Attack on Sarabjithttps://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/attack-on-sarabjit/

Attack on Sarabjit

Sarabjit Singh's death,as it happened late at night,has not been reported in the Urdu press on Thursday,but there were editorials about the attack on him earlier.

Sarabjit Singh’s death,as it happened late at night,has not been reported in the Urdu press on Thursday,but there were editorials about the attack on him earlier.

Qaumi Salamati,edited by Mohammad Ahmad Kazmi,accused in the case of the bomb attack on an Israeli diplomat’s car last year,in an editorial on April 29 writes: “There are theories that behind the attack on Sarabjit are the same elements who want revenge for the hanging of Afzal Guru… The attack has raised the question of why two jail inmates awaiting a death sentence would attack Sarabjit. It is probably not wrong to think that even if the Pakistani government was not directly involved,it was directed by elements with access to jails and other arms of the government’s machinery. There is weight in this allegation…”

Inquilab editor Shakeel Shamsi,in his signed column on April 29,writes: “Restlessness [in India about the attack is natural as Sarabjit is an Indian citizen. But this restlessness seems to be artificial and there is a political tinge to it. Because if an attack on an Indian citizen in a jail was so regrettable,a similar protest would have been made at the killing of Qateel Siddiqui in the Pune jail last June. Family members of Qateel would have received the same type of sympathy… In Sarabjit’s case,his lawyers were not able to prove his innocence,whereas Qateel’s crime had not been proved and he had not confessed about his crime. No court in this country had sentenced him.”

Coal Blues

Sahafat,in an editorial on May 2,writes: “wisdom demanded that the government accepted the irregularities in the allotment of coal blocks and conducted an impartial inquiry. What has happened instead is against all procedures and norms…”

Inquilab (May 2) is of the view that “it would be incorrect to blame just the Congress for the misuse of the CBI. In our view,the CBI should be autonomous but it can’t be left without any accountability… [Parliament should allow a jury selected by the Supreme Court to oversee the agency to ensure independent and just functioning”. Rashtriya Sahara,on the same day,cast doubt on the way the BJP has approached the matter.

General’s Gamble

Siasat,in an editorial comm-ent on April 22,expressed its agreement with the views of veteran Pakistani journalists that former Pakistan president,General Pervez Musharraf’s return to Pakistan was based on a delusional optimism and a “military mindset”. Jadeed Khabar (April 29) writes: “The greatest damage in the Pakistan election was to former president Pervez Musharraf,who has been prevented from participating in the election… he is paying for the crimes and mistakes committed by him during his rule”. Jamaat-e-Islami’s bi-weekly,Daawat,in a commentary on April 25,writes: “Musharraf has been caught in the net woven by himself. The treatment he gave to the judges is now being returned to him”.

Chinese Incursions

Reacting to the incursion by China in Ladakh,Rashtriya Sahara,in its editorial on April 30,writes: “Many Indians may not know that at the time of the ceasefire agreement between China and India in 1962,no clear demarcation of the Line of Actual Control (LAC) was made. Ladakh is a part of an Indian state,Jammu and Kashmir. The area where the incursions have been made is seen to be in Ladakh traditionally. Therefore,the Indian claim on the area is legitimate. But border demarcations are not made on the basis of tradition alone. They are made after proper written agreements,something that,unfortunately,has not been done so far in this case and should now be done without any delay. In fact,the patience and perseverance shown by India in the face of Chinese provocation,has been praised by everyone because this is what wisdom demands”. Sahafat,is its editorial on April 26,writes that “a hardline against China is necessary… Even if the vagueness on the [border is accepted,there is no justification for incursions so deep [into our territory… This is not the time for a war,but India has to be prepared”.

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Inquilab,in its comment on April 26 writes: “The feeble expression of anxiety by political parties is not of the type one sees in cases connected with Sri Lanka,Bangladesh and Pakistan… Why are tongues tied with regard to China?”

seema.chishti@expressindia.com