Disenchantment in the Valley
With reference to Barkha Dutt’s article A stitch in time (June 28), the time has come for politicians of the Valley to stand up and contain the fallout over the land transfer to the Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB). In the last few years, life in J&K had become normal, but this new issue has taken a communal turn and has disturbed the peace in the Valley.
Tarun Madan, Delhi
The issue of forest land transfer to the SASB has brought about a polarisation between Hindus and Muslims. The state government should take immediate steps to restore peace and handle the situation with care so that no community is hurt.
Dagar Katyal, Chandigarh
Barkha Dutt’s article seemed like a meal cooked in the People’s Democratic Party’s kitchen to the taste of the separatists in the Valley. The Kashmir issue is neither an economic problem nor a human rights problem. At the core of it all lies anti-Indianism and anti-Hinduism, whichever way you look at it. Neither the large-scale expulsion of Pandits and Sikhs from Kashmir, the crores of rupees worth of economic assistance being given to Kashmiris, nor declaring it an autonomous state, has stopped anti-Indianism. Scrapping Article 370 and a crackdown on the separatists and their mentors is the surgery that Kashmir desperately needs.
YOGEET SHARMA, Delhi
The PDP has been raising trivial issues despite being in the government. The Waqf Board and the Hindu Shrine Boards must be excluded from government patronage to grow naturally in a democratic manner. The state government ignored the problems of Kashmiris all these years despite getting funds from the Centre. The roads, educational institutions, environment and businesses are all in a pathetic condition, as the ministers care only for their constituencies.
Hilal Ahmed, Srinagar
It is a wrong notion that the Amarnath cave was discovered in 1860 by a Muslim shepherd. Historical records show that because of the persecution at the hands of Iftikhar Khan, who was appointed as governor of Kashmir by Aurangzeb in 1674, some Pandits visited the Amarnath cave to seek deliverance. Then they met Guru Tegh Bahadur, who agreed to save them from conversion. The Guru was also beheaded by the emperor in 1675 for refusing to convert to Islam as it would have facilitated the conversion of Pandits in the Valley. The route to Amarnath was rediscovered in 1860 by Malik, a devout Muslim. It is because of these reasons that Hindus could not visit the shrine and the route to the cave remained neglected.
J.L. GANJOO, Delhi
Left alert is a false alarm
Sitaram Yechury in Do not drop the bomb (July 3) fails to make a convincing case for scrapping the Indo-US deal. The UPA’s Common Minimum Programme didn’t preclude anything outside its ambit. The deal has been supported by the scientific community that knows best about the benefits of nuclear energy. The Hyde Act does not restrain other nations from supplying fuel in the event of the US pulling out, but it’d be naive for the world to help us if we continue to explode nuclear weapons.
J.M. Manchanda, via email
This is where reality bites
Apropos of Mondy Thapar’s Reality shows: Much more than just kids on show (July 3), it is cruel for a ten-year-old to undergo a 12-hour long rehearsal in a studio. The producers of reality shows should avoid a competitive angle, and opt for just a ‘talent show’ with no rankings attached so that the children don’t get hurt.
P.K. Srivastava, via email