If we forget, it’ll go on
Vir Sanghvi’s article A scandal past its sell-by date (Counterpoint, May 3) reflects the frustration of the common man over the delays in our judicial system, which are compounded by political interference in the investigation of high-profile cases.india Updated: May 09, 2009 23:04 IST
Vir Sanghvi’s article A scandal past its sell-by date (Counterpoint, May 3) reflects the frustration of the common man over the delays in our judicial system, which are compounded by political interference in the investigation of high-profile cases. Sanghvi is being practical in saying that the Bofors case was never going to get anywhere and that we should forget it after 25 years of fruitless inquiry into it. By the same token, we should also forget the denial of justice to the victims of the anti-Sikh and Gujarat riots, and cases like the fodder scam, the Taj corridor scam and many others. Public memory is short. But if we keep forgetting such scandals, will politicians ever stop subverting the criminal justice system?
R.N. Kohli, Delhi
The Bofors case has again been raised though it is not as major a talking point today as it was two decades ago. In fact, people are now fed up with this riddle because of the Congress government’s reluctance to get to the bottom of the conspiracy because of its own interest and the Opposition’s obsession with Ottavio Quattrocchi. However, the case has come to symbolise corruption in politics and the limitations of the criminal justice system in transcending the boundaries of complex national laws.
Sourabh Nagpal, via email
Vir Sanghvi says that there is no dispute about the ‘minor sum’ of Rs 64 crore, which allegedly changed hands in the Bofors case. The quantum of money paid and taken in bribe is not the issue. The fact is that a commission was paid by Bofors and must have been received by someone. Obviously, you will pay the commission to the person(s) who has the authority to approve the deal. With a pliant CBI, bureaucracy, judiciary and the support of partisan journalists, the Congress government carried out the heist. By the time the NDA government came to power, the trail had gone cold and the efforts made by it were not enough to satisfy the international courts.
C. Prakash, Delhi
Vote of no note
This is with reference to Indrajit Hazra’s article It’s too darn hot (Red Herring, May 3). Elections and politics are matters of idle talk in India. We blame politics and crack jokes about our politicians. We participate in rallies shouting slogans against our government, but we won’t act. Post-26/11, it seemed not only Mumbaikars but the whole nation had become one against terrorism and the apathetic attitude of our leaders. The media made us believe that the common man had come of age and the coming elections would witness a change in the general attitude towards electing their candidate. But once again we proved our leaders right that we are just a billion-plus nation waiting to be cheated.
Shahzad Zaman, Allahabad
It is often observed that elections are always held at odd times, be it the elections of 2004 or the ongoing 2009 one which have been in the scorching heat. The elections of 1989 and 1999 were in the middle of winter. The irony is that elections are held for the people, yet the people are not spared a thought.
Mahtab Ahmad, Aligarh
I do not agree with Indrajit Hazra’s views that the vote is the powerless aam admi’s only weapon. To me, the vote only helps to declare results, not form governments. When all parties are openly saying that they will align with anyone to gain power, where is the sanctity of the vote? This is one major reason why polling has been low. But Hazra correctly says that ‘some sort of incentive is required for many Indians on the voters’ list to cast their vote’.
D.R. Gulati, via email
They’re not showpieces
Apropos of the report Kids interrupted (Grey Matter, May 3), potential talent in a child must be discovered and used for his/her successful career at a later stage. But to make him or her compete for positions in the rat race on television shows is not advisable. That’s why many of their record feats are not recognised. Childhood is not a time to perform feats, it is to study, to learn and to enjoy life. Childhood once lost is gone forever. Children must be kept away from stressful activities that serve only to find them places in record books. Let them spend time having fun with cultural and sporting activities without indulging in anything harmful to their health.
Mahesh Kapasi, Delhi
First Published: May 09, 2009 23:02 IST