Readers write

Letters to the Editor

Print edition : July 24, 2015

Battered image

The Lalitgate scam caught the National Democratic Alliance government unawares as it was celebrating one year of its rule by holding rallies across the country and claiming that it was a corruption-free government (Cover Story, July 10). It was improper on the part of Sushma Swaraj to have helped Lalit Modi, who faces money laundering charges, especially because of his client-counsel relationship with her family. Saying that she helped him on humanitarian grounds is untenable. She should have helped the government bring him back to India so that he could be tried in a court of law.

Narendra Modi should sack Sushma Swaraj immediately if she does not resign on moral grounds. Otherwise, it will tarnish further the image of the government, which has done nothing to fulfil its election promises or to deal with the agrarian crisis.

Jayant Mukerjee, Kolkata

THE furore over the surreptitious support extended to Lalit Modi by Sushma Swaraj and Vasundhara Raje has snowballed into a major crisis for the Bharatiya Janata Party. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s image as a crusader against corruption has been dented considerably. The power tussle within the BJP has been clearly exposed. It is intriguing that Narendra Modi is keeping a stubborn silence over this murky issue. The political storm this episode has triggered will not subside easily.

N.C. Sreedharan, Kannur, Kerala

The controversy over the External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj violating standard protocols of the Foreign Office to help Lalit Modi has poured cold water on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s gung-ho declaration of not compromising on questions of transparency and probity. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s alleged bid to help Lalit Modi to obtain immigration clearance for the U.K. in 2011 has added fuel to the fire, plunging the BJP into deep trouble. Both Sushma Swaraj and Vasundhara Raje should resign from their posts to prove that this government is clean.

Buddhadev Nandi, Bishnupur, West Bengal

The row over Sushma Swaraj facilitating clearance of Lalit Modi’s visa papers is uncalled for. It is unfortunate that the issue has refused to die down, with the opposition targeting the Prime Minister over a non-political issue. That Sushma Swaraj’s goodwill gesture has turned into a major source of embarrassment for the NDA government shows the Indian polity in a poor light. But the onus is on the Prime Minister now. He has to break his silence and clear the air before the political parties put the government on the mat in Parliament.

R. Prabhu Raj, Chennai

Lessons from history

Keeping in view the importance of the issue highlighted in the article “Godmen and libel” (July 10), I suggest that the book reviewed in the article (“ Maharaj Libel Case”) should be reprinted and made available to the public.

Mool Chand Sonkar. Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh

Caste violence

The atrocities perpetrated on Dalits in Maharashtra, considered to be one of the country’s most industrially developed States, are disturbing and made me wonder whether we are really living in the computer age (“Ringing with hate”, June 26). The orchestrated attacks on Dalits can be attributed to the growing antipathy and intolerance of vested interests to their growing social and political empowerment. The unsavoury incidents are a grim pointer to the firm entrenchment of caste prejudices. Adding insult to injury has been the lackadaisical attitude of the State administration and the law enforcement agencies in dealing stringently with the perpetrators of such crimes.

The need of the hour is the demolition of both the physical and mental barriers that discriminate against people on the basis of narrow parochial considerations. Suitable amendments to the Prevention of Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes Act in order to accord stringent punishment to the perpetrators of such heinous acts would go a long way in serving as an effective deterrent.

B. Suresh Kumar, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

Empathy and suicide

THE increase in the incidence of suicides (“The extreme step”, June 26) should sensitise and awaken us to the inhuman indifference, insensitivity and apathy afflicting our society. A callous acquisitive culture has ruined social values, affecting one’s pursuit of inner individual happiness. It is a pity that those who lack the sagacity to withstand these social pressures take the extreme step of snuffing out their own lives. It is high time that we became more empathetic and considerate towards less fortunate people.

Rakesh Kumar Sinha, Jhumri Telaiya, Jharkhand


THE Supreme Court has done the right thing in banning the publication of photographs of leaders in government advertisements (“Distorted message”, June 26). Such advertisements promote a personality cult at taxpayers’ cost. Such curtailment might result in loss of revenue to the print media, but it is a small price to pay to prevent government funds being diverted for unimportant expenditures.

D.B.N. Murthy, Bangalore

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor