Letters to the editor

'It's kiddish of the Congress to merely wait for the BJP to make mistakes'

A selection of readers' opinions over the past week.

A matter of ideology

It’s true that the Congress lacks ideology, true national spirit and the will to oppose the ongoing madness of the ruling party (“Serious question: Does the Congress party believe in anything at all?”). It seems that the Congress is “certain” of coming to power in three years’ time. Therefore, they are merely waiting for the BJP to commit mistakes so as to reap the benefits. This is kiddish behaviour. Vikrant Mahajan

***

I absolutely agree with Anjali Mody’s view that the Congress is giving up the ideological and political battle to the Bharatiya Janata Party without a fight. I think it is happening because of ineptitude of its current leadership, where the senior most leader is incapable of comprehending the nuances of the BJP’s divisive politics. The Congress’ inability to bring educated Indians back into the forefront has made it a soft target for the BJP. Sumit Mitra

***

Can someone please tell the Congress to have intra-party elections? Most of the country is fed up of the very obvious dynastic succession. It doesn’t inspire any confidence at all. And since the idea is to have a fair election, there has to be a secret ballot. Elect a leader and some of the party’s old supporters may come back to them. Otherwise the BJP will win in 2019 again, merely because there is no alternative. Jamila Koshy

***

The Congress has always worked against the interests of the country. They have been self-centred and will go to any extent to retain power. RV Ramani

***

I am on the same page as Anjali Mody in understanding Congress politics in competing with the Bharatiya Janata Party on nationalism and pandering to what it considers as Hindu majoritarian views and sentiments.

The writer has mentioned Gujarat and the Afzal Guru hanging. I can add Punjab to the list. The details she provided on how the Congress had two different manifestos – one in English for liberal middle class where secularism was mentioned, and another one in Gujarati where secularism was abandoned to pander to the electorate – shows the utter bankruptcy of the Congress politics that has eventually contributed to consolidating Hindu communalism and expanding the base of the BJP. Pritam Singh

Time warp

Well, at least Rahul Gandhi got Narendra Modi talking (“Has Rahul Gandhi finally got under the skin of the BJP?”). But I’m disappointed that he could not get him to debate on any of the important issues or the current happenings. Modi seems to be stuck in a time warp as all his rhetoric is reserved for the Gandhi family. I was not much of an Atal Bihari Vajpayee fan, but I have now realised his value. He was a true statesman, who knew where to draw the line when it came to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. All I have to say to Modi now is: Sir, I am sorry I wasted my vote on you. Rekha BM

Professor's paradox

This professor from Lucknow has behaved like any other opportunistic academician/pseudo-intellectual at this moment in our country (“’This is worse than the Emergency’: Lucknow professor targeted for sharing article on Umar Khalid”). He said that he has merely shared the article in which Apoorvanand supported Umar Khalid’s protest.

Well, this whole argument is that Umar Khalid was not just demonstrating a different thought. Had that been the case, we all would have welcome a different thought as a fresh breeze and debated it. However, he and many others like him decided to allegedly shout anti-Indians slogans. Nobody should be allowed to do that. Country is first and foremost and our radical opinions come after that.

The Lucknow professor is saying everything that there is to say, like comparing the current happenings to the Emergency, and yet claiming that the situation is not conducive. I think that someone needs to tell him that if it was like the Emergency period, then he would not be roaming freely after supporting anti-India slogans. So there is a paradox in his actions and words written against the current establishment.

However, one very important fact is that he is from Uttar Pradesh and his intellect is not showing him the worsened law and order mechanism in the state. Let us stop the hypocrisy here and be united at least on the agenda of India. Himanshoo Kumar Saxena

***

I read the article on the Lucknow professor, Rajesh Misra, and do feel bad for him for what he has to go through because of a simple Facebook post. It reminds me of a student who posted on Facebook about some activities in his university that he did not like. Some people entered his hostel room that night and had arguments and scuffled with him. I don’t know if the boy got injured as that is still a bit mysterious.

Who do you think the professor and the media would call the victim in the above case? The student who created the post or the people who had a scuffle in his room?

The university I am referring to is the University of Hyderabad and one of the people who entered that student’s room to have a scuffle against the Facebook post was one Rohith Vemula. Who do you support now?

Get some perspective. There are victims on both sides of this battle and the media needs to be neutral. Krishnan

Manufactured campaign

To compare the JNU police arrest to the provocative sloganeering with McCarthyism is typical hyperbole from those pseudo-intellectual Leftists who have visceral hatred of this democratically-elected government (“’What is happening in India today is similar to the McCarthy era’: Partha Chatterjee”).

It’s shameful behaviour on the part of these people as they are partners in crime of the incredibly corrupt undemocratic Congress party that has presided over abject poverty, massive under- and unemployment and hunger and malnutrition for 60 years.

You manufacture, exaggerate and falsify to portray this regime, which is attempting to address the issues neglected for decades, as intolerant, fascist and numerous equally unwarranted hateful adjectives.

You have deeply entrenched bias, intellectual dishonesty and unwillingness to admit that you may be barking up not just wrong tree but in the wrong forest altogether. Harish Datta

The hate spectrum

Your speech was rolling along brilliantly; I found myself nodding when you spoke about the primacy of the constitution and a thoughtful and robust interpretation of Article 19(1)(A) (“’Affection cannot be manufactured or be regulated by the law’: Lawrence Liang quotes Gandhi in his JNU teach-in lecture”). I even cheered when you brought up the issue of raucous news anchors.

And then in one word you destroyed everything that you said you stood for. If I recall correctly, you exhorted the students to “fight the [political] right”. Why assume that everything the Right does is wrong; everything the Left stands for is perfect and good and “reasonable”?

When I see the hate spectrum we have unleashed in this country, I despair; this is the polarisation that stems from hate, not that which stems from reasoned debate. The Left and the Right are no less culpable, which leaves us floundering for the voice of sanity, which I thought you almost were. Sandhya Sundar

Mischief mongering

Please do a little more homework to make your case (“Make in India and remove Sheldon Pollock from Murty Classical Library, demand 132 intellectuals”). What is it about the timing of the petition that you are suspicious about? It requires time to study a book and to arrive at certain conclusions after discussing it with like-minded people who have also gone through it. So identifying the timing of the petition with the JNU row is a clear case of “journalistic mischief” or gathering evidence against something you are fighting for. Arun

Seeking objectivity

I am not Right, Left or Centre, but just an individual who feels the need to know about affairs that matter with clarity and equanimity (“Why Hindutva groups have for long had Sheldon Pollock in their sights”). Among the affairs that matter to me is classical Indian works, for which I have much respect.

I do find the piece one-sided. No surprise there given that it is written by a student of Sheldon Pollock. But given that he has taken Rajiv Malhotra by name, criticised his work and labeled him many things, I submit that in the interest of objectivity and fairness, Malhotra be invited to write a rebuttal. Badhri

Mild description

The writer holds that violence begins in Syria and is “exported to Europe”, followed by the erection of walls and fences (“Live and let die: Did Michel Foucault predict Europe’s refugee crisis?”). But what about Nato’s illegal invasion of Iraq, its funding and arming of what later became ISIS, and now Russia’s bombs? Didn’t any of this contribute to the refugee crisis, which anyway for Europe amounts to only a very small number of immigrants?

Live and let die is too charitable a description of what has been perpetrated on these societies by Euro-American governments. It amounts to the same old explanation, that some people just have chaos and barbarism in their blood. Aman Kumar

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