Urdu broadsheets have mostly adopted a conservative line on Bangladesh. The Jamaat-e-Islami Hinds biweekly,Daawat,in comment by its editor,Parvez Rehmani (March 10),writes: The Muslims of Bangladesh are active Muslims. Despite their minds being poisoned with Bangla nationalism and atheistic secularism in 1971,their link to Islam could not be severed. There is no basis for the allegations being levelled against the supporters of Jamaat-e-Islami. They are motivated by political revenge… As far as efforts for the establishment of an Islamic life is concerned,the people there respect Jamaat-e-Islami… Therefore,our government should formulate its policy (about Bangladesh) keeping these facts in view. If a government is formed there based on Islamic principles,there is no cause for worry. Such a government would establish better relations with our country because of the presence of 20 crore Muslims in this country.
Delhi-based weekly Nai Duniya (March 10-17) writes: The campaign of democrats in Shabagh is now on its way towards a civil war. Awarding death sentences to the Islamists has become the central tricky issue. It elaborates: Even the supporters of the campaign for awarding death sentence to those who supported Pakistan during the liberation movement in 1971 are expressing the apprehension that if the democrats continue to demand punishment instead of justice,it could lead to a long-term confrontation.
Commenting on the electoral victory of the CPM-led Left Front in Tripura,Siasat,in its editorial on March 2,writes: A kind of anxiety was discerned in political circles regarding the result of the assembly elections in Tripura. This was because politicians wanted to see if the people of Tripura would vote against the communists,like in Kerala and West Bengal. But now it would not be correct to talk of a political oblivion of communists… Even if the results of the Tripura elections do not significantly affect the forthcoming general elections,it would have an impact on the coalitions and political alignments…. At a time when there is a wave against the UPA in the country and the opposition parties have failed to offer a viable alternative,the possibilities of change cannot be ruled out.
Daawat,in a commentary on March 7,writes: If Modi can become a PM candidate because of the Gujarat verdict,so what position can be accorded to Manik Sarkar after the verdict of Tripura? The partisanship of the media can be discerned on this matter… Much is made of Modis victory… On the other hand,the fifth consecutive victory of the Left Front in Tripura and the long rule of Manik Sarkar that is much longer than the rule of Modi did not make news.
Rashtriya Sahara,in its editorial on March 2,writes: The countrys media… did not emphasise the fact that Manik Sarkar is the most honest and spotless politician in the country. Sahafat,in its editorial on March 2,writes: A special feature of elections in Tripura was a record 92 per cent polling. Sarkar is well known for his simplicity and it seems that,following the footsteps of Jyoti Basu,he is marching ahead with success.
Paying a glowing tribute,Rashtriya Sahara,in its editorial of March 7,writes: Undoubtedly,being a socialist country in the neighbourhood of the greatest capitalist country,the US,was an achievement. And [Venezuela leader Hugo Chavez fixed his countrys economy using socialist economic policies,and that is why the people respected him. In India,only those sections that were sworn enemies of socialism were critical of him. Sahafat,in it editorial on March 9,writes: Chavez used to look into the eyes of rulers of the US and never hesitated to speak the truth. This was the reason that the Venezuelan people came out to the streets mourning and crying bitterly after his death… Such popularity is gained by ones love for justice and assertion of truth. One wishes the leaders of our own country could learn a lesson from Chavez.
Compiled by Seema Chishti