Raise the Tamil issue in Colombo
SIR, The Prime Minister&’s decision to boycott the CHOGM conference is not correct; he has succumbed to the pressure exerted by some Tamil parties over human rights abuses and alleged war crimes by the Sri Lankan army.<br /> Instead of boycotting the Colombo summit, India should attend the conference and stridently raise the issue of atrocities on Tamils during the 26-year civil war. India would then have been able to buttress the stand that any further violation of human rights will not be tolerated. India is the largest nation in the Commonwealth bloc. <br /> With representation downgraded, the external affairs minister, Salman Khurshid, will step in for the PM. As a seasoned politician, he should deliver a tough “message” on human rights violation by the Sri Lankans. The issue of atrocities on Tamils should be taken up directly with the Sri Lankan authorities. If necessary, the issue can be referred to the United Nations.<br /> Yours, etc., Ramesh G Jethwani, Bangalore, 11 November.<br /> <strong>CRUMBLING TRIPOD</strong><br /> SIR, The State as an entity of governance is a theoretical concept. The Government gives shape to a State and translates into reality the policies and programmes in accord with the needs of the people. The tripod is constituted by the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary. Separation of powers is a striking feature of the structure. The Congress has almost destroyed democracy in the six decades since independence and the process has been completed by the Congress-led UPA. The Prime Minister and his Finance minister have failed miserably. The mission to Mars is merely a diversionary tactic. <br /> Mr Rajindar Sachar in an article in your paper, titled “Politicised criminals” (31 July) had written that at present 162 out of 545 Lok Sabha members and 1258 out of 4032 sitting MLAs have declared that criminal cases are pending against them.<br /> As the second leg of the tripod of governance, the Legislature is a tainted entity. The only wing of governance that is upright is the Judiciary. Mr Sachar has expressed grave concern in his article “Appointment of Judges” (30 September) ~ “The matter needs to be discussed in a calm manner, and not by outgoing discredited legislators and in an atmosphere of suspicion and half-baked information.<br /> Now that the Bill has gone to a standing committee, it will hopefully be widely circulated throughout the country so that the legal fraternity, law school journals and the public can have time to discuss it at leisure.”<br /> Mr Sachar has warned against the strategy of the law minister to get the Constitution 120th Amendment Bill passed and then send it to the States for ratification without the detailed suggestions of the Judicial Appointment Commission. This will be a constitutional monstrosity. The UPA government is crumbling. Yours, etc., Samares Bandyopadhyay,Kolkata, 11 November.
SIR, Hats off to the court in Dhaka and the government of Bangladesh for the judgment in the case relating to the mutiny in Bangladesh Rifles, now renamed as Border Guard Bangladesh. The court has sentenced 152 people to death and 161 others to life imprisonment for their involvement in the February 2009 revolt. The BDR mutiny was not merely an outburst against poor pay and working conditions. It was rooted in a conspiracy by Huji, a militant organisation, and the ISI of Pakistan. Its objective was to assassinate the newly-elected Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, topple her government, and prepare the ground for military rule. The judgment conveys a message to the jihadis and the ISI. The court has spoken bravely.
Yours, etc., Jaydev Biswas, Shyamnagar, 7 November.