Letters to the editor

Print edition : April 14, 2017

Assembly elections

THE Bharatiya Janata Party’s landslide victory in the Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh is the result of the polarisation of voters on communal lines and points to the rise of Hindutva hegemony (Cover Story, March 31). This was evident from the fact that not a single person from the Muslim community, which constitutes 19 per cent of the State’s population, was fielded as a BJP candidate.

Narendra Modi and his team hoodwinked the people of U.P. and elsewhere into believing that demonetisation was beneficial to them, though the facts on the ground are different. Now Modi and Amit Shah have revealed their true colours by installing a hard-core, right-wing saffron leader, Yogi Adityanath, as the Chief Minster. Let us see how its election slogan “sabka saath, sabka vikas” progresses in the coming days.


THE fact that Prime Minister Modi’s efforts and his government’s flagship schemes have played vital roles in the BJP’s victory in the Assembly elections cannot be denied anymore. U.P. has a huge workforce and a vast agrarian sector. Despite this, a majority of its people are downtrodden. It is the responsibility of the government to create a viable environment in terms of facilities, education, agriculture, business and jobs.


THE victory in U.P. and Uttarakhand has given a fillip to Modi in the run-up to the Assembly elections next year in Gujarat and Karnataka and in the general election of 2019. The BJP has been consolidating its position, and Modi’s popularity has been rising after every election, whether in local bodies or in Assemblies, which shows that there is no leader at the pan-India level who can match him. Casting aspersions on the BJP for polarising voters is not only incorrect but shows the Congress’ sheer desperation. It is the consolidation of votes across caste and religion that enabled the BJP to get three-fourths of the votes.


IT appears that the BJP learnt its lessons from the Bihar debacle and did its homework. The positive outcome of these elections is that it has sounded the death knell for caste, identity and sectarian politics. That the BJP was able to secure comprehensive victories even in the Muslim-dominated areas of Uttar Pradesh is a pointer to its acceptability among all strata of the electorate.

With the anti-incumbency factor weighing heavily against the Samajwadi Party because of its failure on several fronts, mainly law and order, and the party being wracked by internal feuds, its defeat was no surprise. The pathetic fall of the Congress can be attributed to its disconnect with the grass roots and its obsession with the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty to revive its electoral fortunes. However, it would be premature to script the epitaph of the Congress, which had bounced back strongly from crises in the past by presenting itself as the only credible national alternative to the BJP.


Granite robbery

THE article “Anatomy of a loot” (March 31) was a scoop, stripping bare everything done by the granite mafia, which disregarded the law of the nation, intruded into the personal liberty and property of innocent people in the vicinity of Melur, caused loss of natural resources, inflicted damage on the ecosystem, and deprived the exchequer of its revenue. But for the judicial intervention and appointment of U. Sagayam as Special Investigating Officer to look into the murky affairs, these crimes would have gone undetected. Sagayam’s recommendation for a thorough investigation under a Multi-disciplinary Team of the CBI shows that the enormity of these ghastly crimes is yet to be unravelled.

Sagayam’s crusade will be complete only when the authorities bring the politicians and the corrupt government officials to book. Kudos to Sagayam and Frontline.


Racist attacks

THERE is no bias against Indians as such in the United States (“Inventing enemies”, March 31). It is likely that they are mistaken for West Asians and others. The bias, if any, is no different from what the people of Manipur, Mizoram or Arunachal Pradesh face in our country.

H.N. Ramakrishna, FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA, U.S.

Eastward ho

THE member nations of BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) can very well tap opportunities in Mexico as the new U.S. administration wants to impose curbs on that country (“Time to look east?”, March 31). With all his talk on stopping immigrants, Donald Trump is akin to our politicians who harp on stopping people from coming to Mumbai on the pretext that they steal local jobs.

Immigration has been happening from time immemorial. Politicians want to win elections, and they find in it an issue that can be exploited to win power.


Africa and the world

IT was, inter alia, Chinua Achebe’s “Things Fall Apart” that accurately portrayed the tragedy that was unfolding in Africa under the despicable colonial rule (“How Africa developed Europe”, March 17). He complemented it with a scathing deconstruction of Joseph Conrad’s classic novel “Heart of Darkness”. Achebe touched a chord in the formerly colonised world. I found the article captivating for its rigour and precision.


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