India and China

Print edition : December 14, 2012

THE Cover Story (November 30) elaborated the wider issues relating to the 1962 war that were left in the dark by those who preferred it to be so. These were and are often overlooked by commentators on the war. The 50th anniversary of the war calls for a credible debate that offers a new perspective on the past and the future of this lingering issue.

THE Cover Story gave one a deep insight into the causes of the border conflict between India and China. It is evident that the war could have been avoided had India taken a pragmatic approach towards the dispute. However, the country learnt some important lessons, mainly its vulnerability in mountain warfare and the need to be prepared in the future.

JAWAHARLAL NEHRUS pseudo-imperialistic policies led to an unnecessary war and, ultimately, turned the border problem into a complex issue. As the author rightly pointed out, every Indian has a right to know the facts behind this war. This is the right time to introspect on our foreign policy with regard to China.

RAMANAND SAGARS TV Ramayana was only one in a long line of Ramayanas produced by the Bombay film industry, none of which make any comment on contemporary politics. The parallel drawn in the article between the Doordarshan serial and this years Turkish blockbuster Conquest 1453 is explicable only if one accepts that the serial provided impetus to the Ram Janmabhoomi movementa tenuous but widely held notion.

THROUGH this exhaustive Cover Story, Frontline has enlightened its readers. Indians have been living with a misguided view as far as China is concerned. It now appears that China gave India ample opportunities to settle the dispute amicably, but Nehru never took them seriously. The article proved that Indias northern borders were never demarcated properly, even in pre-British times. The British seem to have tried to do something about it, but nothing much changed. As the article rightly concluded, it is time the country was told the truth.

Cabinet reshuffle

THE recent Cabinet reshuffle was a typical Congress affair, a please-all exercise that took into account everything from caste and community equations to regional considerations (Corporate hand, November 30). Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal benefited the most as the Congress tried to send out signals to the Jagan Mohan Reddy camp and to an antagonistic Mamata Banerjee. Rahul Gandhi was expected to have an important say in the reshuffle, but in the end, it bore the imprint of Sonia Gandhis logic and Manmohan Singhs requirements.


AT a time when many small nations are doing everything possible to earn foreign exchange with little concern for nature and its protection, Bhutans conservation mission serves as a model for all leaders who are truly interested in conservation (Landlocked beauty, November 30). The royal family of Bhutan rightly deserves the awards and praises showered on it.


THE writer is right in her criticism of the government and its policies (Demonising dissent, November 30). Public perception today is vastly anti-government, or rather anti-Congress. The half-truths and brazen lies being trotted out by the UPAs spokesmen in defence of its actions/inactions and wrong policies are eroding its credibility even further.

U.S. election

RIGHT from the looming fiscal cliff to Israel, Iran, China and Afghanistan, President Barack Obama will have his plate more than full during his second term (Second coming, November 16). He will not only have to cut the defence budget but will have to create a lot of new jobs. And last but not the least, printing never-ending dollars will not fetch the U.S. good results in the long run, so Obama will have to draw a line on that soon. With his mandate so fractured, he will find it difficult to take all the above actions.

NOW Obama can go back to the White House smiling. But the smile, unlike that of the Cheshire cat, may not last too long. This was a tough election to win, but he may find it tougher to govern, with a House of Representatives dominated by Republicans and with nearly half the electorate having voted against him.


HISTORY needs to be made a compulsory subject throughout the world (Bamiyan and beyond, November 16). It is due to the sheer lack of historical sensitivity that the tragedy of Bamiyan occurred. It is sad to see a silent statue of the Buddha, which could withstand the ravages of time, yet could not save itself from the wrath of misguided human anger and hatred.

Silent Spring

SADLY, the concerns highlighted by Rachel Carson in her celebrated book Silent Spring still exist, in some cases on a larger scale (A war gone awry, October 5). Although, advanced countries were quick to discern the fatal consequences of synthetic pesticides, it is astounding to note that in Kerala there was widespread aerial spraying of endosulfan in Kasaragod district as recently as 2006.


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