Letters to the editor

Readers’ comments: If BJP continues with divisive politics, it will be digging its grave for 2019

A selection of readers’ opinions.

Hindi imposition

This news should be repeated multiple times in the lead up to the 2019 Lok Sabha election because it something that can be understood by all (“Watch: Shashi Tharoor states why it’s a waste of resources to add Hindi as an official UN language”).

Tharoor said in his speech, “I understand the pride of Hindi speakers in this country, but people in this country who do not speak Hindi also have pride in being Indian.”

We should add to this:, “Creating circumstances that exclude from opportunity any Indian on the basis of their language is mean-spirited and wrong; just as excluding any Indian on the basis of what their religion is evil. Our duty is to refrain from doing evil! Is that not correct? Next time you hear the word ‘Hindutva’, I want you think about this.” – Daryl Wayne Atamanyk


Hindi is the fourth most-spoken language in the world after Chinese, Spanish and English. We respect all languages in India but if Tharoor has no problem with English, why is he not comfortable with Hindi getting official status at UN? – Ashutosh Raghuwanshi


It is unbecoming of Shashi Tharoor to back-track and try to placate Hindi chauvinists after asserting at that it should not be adopted as an official language at the UN that India thrives on unity in diversity is the biggest farce peddled by subsequent ruling parties to the country’s people. The BJP is treading a suicidal path with their divisive policies. If the continue on this path, they will be digging their own grave for the 2019 elections. – Venkatapathy Balaram

Under attack

It has been often observed that followers of great reformers have adopted Braminical ritual and practices to maintain feudal forms of superiority in the community
(“Watch: Jignesh Mevani’s speech did not disrespect Ambedkar. In fact, it did the opposite”). It is an irony that new caste structures have evolved among followers of Buddha, Mahaveera, Basavanna, Narayanaguru. The very classification of Dalit Christian among Christianity, for instance, is casteism.

Ultimately, identity requirement is the reason for casteism among Hindus. It exists in different forms among other religions too. Total eradication of casteism may be impossible. Even if it is achieved, caste structures will reappear in new avatar. The need of the day is to effectively implement existing legislation to help redress the social, educational and economical inequalities in the society. – Gunashekhara Krishnaswamy


Jignesh Mevani is trying to prove that he is more knowledgeable Ambedkar, Kanshiram and Mayawati and has the solution to the evils of Manuwadi Bramhinism. How so? By joining hands with the communists and the Congress, which is by and for Brahmins?

He is hypocritical to suggest that Ambedkar is wrong in opposing communists. Does this ignorant man know that the communists joined hands with the Congress to defeating Ambedkar in the 1950s? He joins the notorious league with members like Arun Shourie and Sudheendra Kulkarni who have criticised Ambedkar. If he continues this way, he will disappear from mainstream politics as the fog does in the presence of the sun. – T Theethan

Massacre memories

Naresh Fernandes gives spine-chilling and graphic details of violence perpetrated on one community by another, with the complicity of the establishment during the Mumbai riots (“Video: Mumbai was at war with itself: Naresh Fernandes recollects reporting the 1992-’93 riots”). As a resident of Mohammed Ali Road during those days, I can remember those incidents like they just happened yesterday.

Kudos to Naresh Fernandes for his bold and authentic narration. I hope and pray that such a catastrophic situation will never arise again, even though some elements are trying to incite similar trouble. – Joseph Pinto

Argumentative Indians

So, TM Krishna continues with his Modi-bashing (“The TM Krishna column: The quality of public debate in India is dismal, the cue comes from Modi”). In my state, Karnataka, we have had a string of incompetent chief ministers and will soon enough get one more. Yes, we have noticed the rise of Hindutva, but divisive politics and inequality have existed even before that.

We’re killing people in many other ways too: farmers are suffering because of poor agricultural yield and government apathy, industrial pollution is choking our air and dirtying our waters an over population. Will Krishna speak up on these issues please? – Sharath Ahuja


Well said, TM Krishna. But what worries me most is that the so-called educated Indian has completely lost the plot and can easily be swayed. Common sense is becoming increasingly rare. – Venkatesh Periyaswamy

Controversial comments

This is one of the most truthful and accurate representations that I have come across on the issue (“Mamata Banerjee’s remarks on Bengalis in Assam could revive an old and bitter divide”). As a fourth-generation Bengali-speaking person who still wonders sometimes about his identity, I in full agreement with this article.

The National Register of Citizens is a great way to identify and remove illegal immigrants from Assam once and for all. Mamata Banerjee’s comments have the potential to not only destabilise the delicate social balance of Assam but also process of making the national register altogether. – Avijit Roy

Blinkered view

It is sad that the head of a leading airline thinks this way (“It is hard to train students from villages, IndiGo president tells parliamentary panel”). In my experience of 12 years, I have often found youngsters from villages to be easier to train and more adapting. Speaking fluent English is one thing and having the right attitude for customer service is another. – Subhrangshu Banerjee

Sonia Gandhi’s legacy

Sonia Gandhi, firstly, got the post of Congress chief only because of dynasty politics (“A champion of India’s poor: Sonia Gandhi’s most valuable, and least acknowledged, contribution”). Further, like Indira Gandhi, she may have wanted to remove poverty but failed miserably because she did not have the competence to understand results of her miscalculated steps. Further, Sonia eased the path for Quattrochi and a lot of corruption and minority appeasement took place under her leadership of the congress. It is difficult to agree that she truly cared for poor.

Further she destroyed the spirit of Constitution, just like Indira destroyed institutions. By paying glowing tributes to her, you overlook the serious defects in leadership because of which there was corruption and deficit even under an economist’s tenure as prime minister. – Dinesh Solanki

Golden voice

There is no doubt that Mohammed Rafi is the greatest male singer we’ve had in Bollywood (“Google celebrates Mohammed Rafi’s 93rd birthday with a doodle”). Of course, there have been many talented people whose voice has mesmerised the country, key among them Kishore Kumar, Mukesh, Manna Dey and more recently, Udit Narayan and Sonu Nigam, but in terms of versatility and melody, nobody has yet matched up to Ragi.

Is it not baffling that the same person could render devotional tunes like Madhuban Mein Radhika and Man Tadpat Hari Bhajan Ko Aaj with as much ease as romantic and peppy numbers like O Haseena Zulfon Wali andAaja Aaja Main Hoon Pyaar Tera?

While Kishore Kumar could match up to him in songs of despair and pain, he could not compete when a composition called for the genius of a singer who could combine pathos with classical nuances.

It isn’t without reason that even greats like Dey, Nigam, Narayan, Mahendra, Yesudas, Anuradha Padwal and even Lata Mangeshkar have held him as the most mesmerising in the modern musical world. – Santanu Banerji

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