This refers to the editorial ‘Parliament is shamed’ (IE, February 14). The UPA government is solely responsible for the mess in Andhra Pradesh. The UPA chairperson and prime minister have done nothing to assuage the feelings of the people of Seemandhra. The manner in which the home minister sought to introduce the Telengana bill, in gross violation of rules and procedures and amid chaotic conditions, is deplorable.
— G. Ramachandram
The events of February 13 must rank among the darkest days in Parliament’s history. More so because the ruling party’s MPs resorted to unprecedented behaviour — snatching the speaker’s microphone, hurling computers, applying pepper spray, and physically attacking each other over the Telangana bill. The lack of exemplary punishment for unruly members has encouraged lawlessness in Parliament.
— M.C. Joshi
This refers to ‘Gas and hot air’ (IE, February 14). It is not unusual for politicians, who see an inherent conflict in the interest of big business and the common man, to take a course of action that may seem to justify their political ambitions, even if their economic arguments may not make much sense. The AAP’s latest salvo is another addition to its growing list of self-destructive political missteps. It smacks of populism. The interests of thousands of those who joined the protests on the streets of Delhi that fuelled the AAP’s success in the elections would be best served by facilitating investment that would add to the growth of the economy and create jobs. And this cannot happen in the absence of a policy regime that doesn’t offer rewards for risk-taking. Incentives are to investments what a rose is to a valentine. Everything!
— Manish Kumar
I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it” said Beatrice Hall, biographer of Voltaire. The quote epitomises tolerance and free speech in its absolute sense. But in India, the space for tolerance and free speech has been shrinking rapidly and the latest example of it was the ban on Wendy Doniger’s book. Every time a book or a movie or a piece of art fails to conform to the collective understanding, some groups or others assert that their sentiments have been hurt and then it is banned, battered or the creator harassed. This is happening with frightening frequency. But what is dangerous for our democracy is that such incidents are now happening with everyone’s consent, either in the form of intolerance or silence.
— Nirupam Hazra