Letters to the Editor

Print edition : June 23, 2017

Judiciary

THE Justice C.S. Karnan episode exposes the defects in the collegium system of judicial appointments (Cover Story, June 9). The process by which Justice Karnan got elevated to the position of High Court judge lacks transparency. The Supreme Court’s handling of Justice Karnan’s misconduct is questionable. The conduct of a judge is not be discussed anywhere except in Parliament. The Supreme Court has failed to live up to its reputation as the custodian of our fundamental freedoms in this case. The judiciary needs comprehensive reforms.

N.C. Sreedharan, Kannur, Kerala



WHILE Justice Karnan was serving as a High Court judge in Chennai, the then Chief Justices of the Madras High Court and the Supreme Court did not take seriously his erratic actions and dubious judicial orders. Before transferring him to the Calcutta High Court, the Supreme Court should have directed him to mend his ways. The Supreme Court’s contempt proceedings against Justice Karnan can be viewed as a retaliation for his ex parte verdict against seven judges after he was divested of his judicial powers.

P. Rajan, Thalassery, Kerala

THE Cover Story articles were comprehensive and presented the problem in the proper light. It is evident that the Supreme Court blundered when it convicted Justice Karnan. But it will not eat its own words. A simple problem has been made complex. It should have just allowed the matter to die down on its own as Justice Karnan’s retirement is imminent.

S.S. Rajagopalan, Chennai

THE actions of Justice Karnan so far have made a mockery of the rule of law and brought the judiciary into disrepute. It is clear that he is not in the right frame of mind to discharge his duties and responsibilities as a judge. Further, defying the orders of the Chief Justice and then issuing orders against him and other judges from his residence and sending copies of the same to the media amounted to criminal contempt of the Supreme Court, the judiciary and the judicial process. Thus, it was just and reasonable for the court to sentence him to six months’ imprisonment. One hopes Justice Karnan stops evading arrest, which has complicated the case and shown him in a poor light.

K.R. Srinivasan , Secunderabad, Telangana



Nirbhaya

CRIMES against women must be firmly dealt with and no leniency must be shown to offenders even if they are juveniles (“Death penalty debate”, June 9). Moral instruction classes should be introduced in schools, and shows highlighting crimes should be banned from television as they can corrupt children’s minds.

A.J. Rangarajan, Chennai



Caste violence

IT is ironical that 70 years after Independence attacks on Dalit and minority communities in the country are unabated (“Targeting Dalits”, June 9). In Shabbirpur village, the caste Hindu attackers did not leave untouched even the Dalits’ essential articles and livestock. One the one hand, the ruling dispensation eulogises B.R. Ambedkar, while on the other Dalits are being targeted by the upper castes across the country. One hopes that the Yogi Adityanath government will take prompt action against the guilty and arrange to rehabilitate the Dalits so that they can return to their original homes with assurances of safety. The Prime Minister’s slogan of “Sabka sath, sabka vikas” needs to be strictly followed.

Jayant Mukherjee, Kolkata



Kashmir

THE espirit de corps among the Kashmiri people and separatists and hardliners has risen to alarming proportions (“Total alienation”, May 26). While things are drifting out of control, the authorities behave like babes in the woods, and the Centre is taking an obdurate stand, which closes the doors on any discussion. The open rebellion of Kashmiri girls speaks volumes about the enormity of Kashmiris’ alienation.

Ayyasseri Raveendranath, Aranmula, Kerala

I FEEL that it was a historical blunder on the part of the members of the azadi movement to force the tiny population of Kashmiri Pandits to flee Kashmir. This made all Kashmiri leaders millionaires while the poor have become poorer. Had Kashmiri Pandits been left untouched, things would have been different politically. No movement based purely on communalism has ever been successful. The presence of the Pandits would have hardly made any difference to the movement but would have prevented it from getting a communal colour. It was a political miscalculation.

Ravi Raina, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh

THERE would have been no Kashmir problem if a Kashmiri had not been made the first Prime Minister of independent India (“Myths and falsehood”, May 26). Nehru was not fairly elected but was thrust upon a confused nation by M.K. Gandhi, whose knowledge of the land, peoples and international affairs was negligible. The crux of the problem was that the Congress and the Muslim League each wanted more land and people under their control. This, ironically, was their idea of freedom; it did not mean freedom from hunger, illiteracy, homelessness and religious fanaticism. Then what difference does it make to the average Indian whether he or she is ruled by Rama or Ravana?

V.N. Ramaswamy, Hyderabad

PAKISTAN uses every opportunity to exploit what happens in the Kashmir Valley to further its own ends. Whenever the National Democratic Alliance has the chance, it has used the issue in a politically opportunistic way. For example, in 2004, L.K. Advani, then the Deputy Prime Minister, said: “The BJP alone can find a solution to our problems with Pakistan because Hindus will never think whatever we have done is a sellout.” Political parties in India should not politicise the Kashmir issue.

The voter turnout in the byelection to the Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency was 7.14 per cent, which showed that the Valley had rejected Indian democracy. Why did that happen? In no other troubled region of the country do the authorities treat the people the way they treat those in the Valley. The people in the Valley feel they are not being treated as Indians. The idea that Kashmiris are Indians should spread among them.

Jalal S., Kayamkulam, Kerala



AOL

THE Art of Living Foundation (AOL) is challenging the findings of the National Green Tribunal’s expert committee that its World Culture Festival caused extensive damage to the Yamuna floodplains (“Art of defiance”, May 26). Sri Sri Ravi Shankar is accusing the panel of experts of non-application of mind. Maybe this is true as he appears to have monopoly rights over the art of application of mind because he is a spiritual guru.

Mahendra Nath Bhartiya, Alto-Porvorim, Goa



France

THE French elections showed that using hackers to try and influence a nation’s elections does not always work (“Appetite for change”, May 26). Donald Trump’s win was attributed to Russian hacking. The French people seemed to have learnt from the U.S. experience. France does not have Fox News, but it does have France 24, a government-run television channel beamed across the globe. The new President faces huge challenges, the major ones being rising unemployment and terrorism. This win has infused new life into the European Union just as the United Kingdom is going to leave it. The world needs a strong E.U., and the French election results are encouraging for a multipolar world.

Deendayal M. Lulla, Mumbai



Vinod Khanna

THE article “A hero in many roles” (May 26) was an in-depth tribute to Vinod Khanna (also known as the monk who sold his Mercedes). He made his film debut in 1968 with “Mann ka Meet”.

In the mid 1970s when he was at the peak of his career, he shifted to Rajneeshpuram in the U.S., where he spent his time washing dishes and working as Osho’s gardener. When he came back to India, he proved his mettle in politics. Vinod Khanna represented Punjab’s Gurdaspur constituency in the Lok Sabha for four terms and was a Minister of State in Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi did not give him a Cabinet berth in his Ministry. Although Vinod Khanna received several film awards, he did not receive any Padma award.

Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee, Faridabad, Haryana

A letter from the Editor


Dear reader,

The COVID-19-induced lockdown and the absolute necessity for human beings to maintain a physical distance from one another in order to contain the pandemic has changed our lives in unimaginable ways. The print medium all over the world is no exception.

As the distribution of printed copies is unlikely to resume any time soon, Frontline will come to you only through the digital platform until the return of normality. The resources needed to keep up the good work that Frontline has been doing for the past 35 years and more are immense. It is a long journey indeed. Readers who have been part of this journey are our source of strength.

Subscribing to the online edition, I am confident, will make it mutually beneficial.

Sincerely,

R. Vijaya Sankar

Editor, Frontline

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