Published : Jul 10, 2024 11:00 IST - 3 MINS READ

Readers respond to Frontline’s coverage.

Rise of regionals

The culture of coalition governments is here to stay (Cover Story, July 12). The verdict delivered by India’s voters in 2024 not only reflects the vibrancy of our democracy but also holds an important lesson for the national parties: never underestimate the power of regional parties.

After all the hype of 400 paar and “Modi ki guarantee”, the BJP is now at the mercy of the TDP and the JD(U). Modi himself appears to have mellowed enough to acknowledge that his government will take the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) partners into its confidence on all issues of importance. That the regional parties cannot be taken for granted and will have a bigger say in matters is a reality that neither the Congress nor the BJP can afford to ignore.

K.R. Srinivasan

Secunderabad, Telangana

RSS vs Modi

It is interesting that the RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat chose to say what he did about Narendra Modi only after the BJP’s moral defeat in the 2024 Lok Sabha election (“The RSS sends a message”, July 12). The fact that the BJP has had to ride piggyback on partners in the NDA to return to power after a decade of riding solo is surely a bit of a setback to the RSS in its centenary year.

M.Y. Shariff


Policy dilemma

The past decade witnessed a surge in capital expenditure (“Policy dilemma for Modi 3.0”, July 12). This meant the expansion of highways, construction of expressways, replacement of diesel locomotives, and the introduction of Vande Bharat trains. On the trade front, India entered into several free trade agreements, and Forex reserves hit a new high.

And yet, India still ranks 107 in the Global Hunger Index. The National Family Health Survey 2019-21 shows the under-5 mortality rate at 42 per 1,000 live births. Measures such as the Centre’s recent launch of supply of fortified rice through the public distribution system need a renewed focus.

R.V. Baskaran


Karnataka and caste

I wish to highlight certain omissions in the story on Karnataka (“The southern outlier”, July 12). After the fall of Vijayanagara in the late 16th century, many dynasties that were hitherto subordinates of Vijayanagara declared their political independence. Among them were the Wodeyars, the longest ruling dynasty in the history of Karnataka.

The writer has pointed to the influence of the Carnatic Wars as a change factor. More than these wars, the Anglo-Mysore Wars played a crucial role in determining the sociopolitical condition, especially in the Kannada-speaking regions. The article also does not mention the transitions that took place in the 19th century in the princely state of Mysore after the fall of Tipu Sultan. It was during this period that the seeds of the non-Brahmin movement were sown.

As the article points out, the people of Karnataka uphold cultural pluralism. But is it because of linguistic pluralism, as the article states, or is it because of the social and religious reform movements that carved out a niche as determinants?

There are many constraints to the rise of a regional political party in Karnataka. One of them is caste. It is difficult to understand politics in Karnataka without caste.

S. Narendra Prasad

Mysuru, Karnataka

Jan ki baat

I WRITE to flag another change in Frontline’s core values in the recent past. In the election special issue, the first story by Nirupama Subramanian begins with a Hindi headline: “Jan ki baat” (Cover Story, June 28).

As someone who does not speak or understand Hindi, navigating this linguistic minefield without an English translation was a huge challenge. The article goes on to use two italicised slogans of the NDA, which are Hindi slogans, again without English translation. This is simply unacceptable to the reader who expects a magazine like Frontline to be sensitive to India’s linguistic diversity.

Frontline is a magazine I love and have grown up reading. And I understand that it has changed. By all means change the magazine for the better, but in doing so, do not lose what it means to be Frontline.

Arjun Cherian Kovoor

Kottayam, Kerala

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