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Unbecoming of a liberal democracy

The government, which is protecting Taslima for its own interest, must cancel her visa and send her back to Bangladesh, writes Bhagwan Thadani.

india Updated: Dec 30, 2007 00:04 IST

Unbecoming of a liberal democracy

Vir Sanghvi's article The trouble with Taslima made interesting reading. Nasreen is a controversial writer who has hurt the sentiments of a section of people in India. The government, which is protecting Taslima for its own interest, must cancel her visa and send her back to Bangladesh. The more she stays here the more tension she causes the government and the people. It's time the Taslima problem be solved to avoid further controversy.

Bhagwan Thadani, Mumbai

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More than Taslima Nasreen's whims regarding her visa, it is the Indian government's lack of approach towards such issues that has often caused trouble. One wonders whether a secular democracy, boasting of a liberal freedom of speech, should get ruffled by the anti-social and illegal actions of a small group of politically-motivated people. It is painful that the government failed to take a stand when an intolerant religious mob tried to tear to pieces our claims of a secular democracy.

Ved Guilani, Hissar

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The government's diktat that Taslima Nasreen 'remain under house arrest or leave the country' is objectionable. It is unbecoming of a liberal democracy which India pretends to be. All liberals across India who believe in freedom of speech should oppose this medieval ruling. The secular citizens of India should take to the streets so that the government is forced to revoke the statement; and also clarify whether this country is meant only for religious fanatics and vote-bank eyeing politicians or also for its liberal and secular citizens.

Sanjay Kumar, Sitamarhi

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On the one hand, exiled Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen is being held in isolation at some and barred from meeting even her friends, on the other Rahul Gandhi, who had also received death threats from LeT, was far from being under such a house arrest. The government is showing double standards in its efforts to appease the voters. Taslima should be
provided security and allowed to live in Kolkata.

PC Chakraborty, Delhi

Enlighten and educate

Kaushik Basu makes lot of sense when he emphasises the importance of higher education in India. We should consider the education-tourism sector. Given the intellectual resources available in the country, it shouldn't be difficult. The government though, may play spoil-sport. Think for example, the willingness of the IIMs to open foreign branches. The government sits on ambitious projects until they lose their competitive edge. It is interesting to note how the Chinese universities and research centres are expanding.

Rahul Kumar, Mumbai

Polite if convenient

Karan Thapar rightfully laments the loss of civility in political life while referring to the verbal utterances of Sonia Gandhi. It is sad but true that civilised behaviour is passe. Being uncouth and brash is acceptable, especially if the rules and values suit your convenience.

Veena Garella, via e mail