BiharBIHAR completely rejected the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (Cover Story, November 27). The people of the State have reposed their faith in time-tested politicians, especially Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar. This is the NDA’s second defeat after its success in the general election. It needs to do some sincere soul-searching as the people of Delhi and Bihar have shown that they are capable of deciding who will lead them and that they do not blindly follow political rhetoric. This augurs well for India.
Balasubramaniam Pavani, Secunderabad, Telangana
THE more massive the victory, the bigger the responsibility of the winners to fulfil the promises made during the election campaign. What is heartening is that Nitish Kumar has said that he wants to involve the opposition in governing the State. This is a sign of a mature politician. He did a lot in the past 10 years but has a lot of ground to cover. Hopefully, he will not face any problem from Lalu Prasad as the people of Bihar really want to see the State going in the right direction in terms of growth and development.
Bal Govind, Noida, Uttar Pradesh
NITISH KUMAR’S hat-trick victory and the Mahagathbandhan’s impressive performance in Bihar are historic. The win assumes significance as both the Janata Dal (U) and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) were decimated in the 2014 general election. The victory is testimony to the fact that the aam aadmi’s priority continues to be bread-and-butter issues and growth, development and law and order. The BJP’s over-reliance on the popularity of Modi and its gross underestimation of the strength of its political adversaries led to its downfall. The results should serve as a wake-up call for the party.
Suresh Kumar, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
ALTHOUGH the people of Bihar gave the Mahagathbandhan a clear verdict, rejecting the BJP’s hate politics, it is surprising that the RJD won more seats than the Janata Dal (U), though RJD supremo Lalu Prasad was convicted in a corruption case and cannot contest elections. This shows that caste played a decisive role in the outcome of the elections. But one cannot take credit away from Nitish Kumar. Most Biharis wanted him to continue as Chief Minister because of the work he has done over the past 10 years to develop the State and improve law and order. It is high time Modi understood that Hindutva is not compatible with an economic development agenda.
K.R. Srinivasan, Secunderabad, Telangana
THE Mahagathbandhan’s victory was mainly due to the developmental works of the Bihar government under the leadership of Nitish Kumar. The BJP’s popularity is on the wane probably because of the actions of its leaders and followers. It is high time the party reined in the Hindutva elements that are bent on destroying India’s secular credentials, endangering the lives of minority groups and obstructing the path to development.
Jayant Mukherjee, Kolkata
THE two-man army of Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad proved to be stronger than the BJP and the RSS. The weapon this army used was clear-cut progress in the State, particularly of women.
G. Azeemoddin, Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh
Uniform civil code
A.G. NOORANI’S essays are always scholarly, lucid and educative, but his most recent one (“Hindutva’s stick”, November 27) appeared to be an exception. People who understand the Indian political scene will agree with Noorani’s assertion that the uniform civil code is a stick with which the RSS wishes to beat Muslims and self-proclaimed secular political parties/formations. However, that in itself does not merit its dismissal. All organised religions treat women as secondary to men. This historical injustice has become part of popular culture. Discrimination against women and gender minorities is against the Constitution. Therefore, whether people are Hindu, Muslim or of any other religion, they need to be brought within the ambit of a uniform, just and egalitarian legal framework governing personal laws. Contrary to prevailing wisdom, the marriage and succession practices of Hindus are discriminatory to women.
Prashant Singh, New Delhi
IT is unfortunate that the government is trying to impose food habits on its citizens (“Diet and diktat”, November 27). Ever since the BJP rode to power at the Centre and in several States, beef-eating has been banned. There is no clear verdict from the courts about the legality of the ban on the sale and consumption of beef. Many of those involved in the beef trade are out of work. Why should a government interfere with the food habits of its people?
D.B.N. Murthy, Bengaluru
IT was pleasant news that the judiciary asserted its primacy over the executive in judicial appointments (“Judicial assertion”, November 13). The NJAC was a brazen attempt on the part of the government to interfere with the judiciary’s independence.
The Finance Minister’s comment that it is the tyranny of the unelected is misconceived because if the judiciary’s constitutional independence is taken away, what is left is the tyranny of the elected legislators. The Constitution alone is supreme, not Parliament or the judiciary. Courts must be free from the influence of the legislature as MPs are subject to scrutiny by them. The collegium system may have some irregularities but the same can be said of the working of legislators and the functioning of Parliament. Through introspection and self-evaluation, the judiciary can remove the errors in the collegium system.
M.Y. Shariff, Chennai
IN its present form, the collegium system of appointing judges to the higher courts has many flaws. The Supreme Court should overhaul it in the best interests of the country.
N.C. Sreedharan, Kannur, Kerala