The editorial in the latest issue of Organiser,titled Chawla is a blot on EC; let him resign on his own, says: The ongoing controversy in the Election Commission has yet again proved how pathetically inadequate our politicians are when it comes to setting high ideals before the nation. I dont want to send a message that there are two sets of standards,one for powerful people and one for ordinary folks who are working every day and paying their taxes… I take responsibility for it and were going to make sure we fix it so it doesnt happen again, this is how an embarrassed President Barack Obama admitted to the mistake of selecting two important candidates including his political soulmate to lead health reform,Tom Daschle who had to withdraw over some trivial tax issues. There is a lesson in it for India in the ongoing storm over the Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswamis recommendation to the President to remove Election Commissioner Navin Chawla.
It adds: It is interesting to note how the Congress Party and its Law Minister reacted to the CEC recommendation. The ruling party accused the CEC of being a BJP man. And the Law Minister HR Bharadwaj brazenly declared that Chawla would soon be promoted as the next CEC and that Gopalaswami was not entitled to recommend the removal of EC. It is possible that there are different legal interpretations on the appointment and removal of the Election Commissioner¿ Independent of CECs official stand,Navin Chawla is not a person who can inspire confidence in such an important position. He was controversial all through his career. Two years ago some 200 MPs had petitioned the Union Government for his removal,presenting a dossier that accused him of pro-Congress bias. The UPA government understandably rejected the demand. Chawlas closeness to the Congress and the Sonia Gandhi household has never been a secret. The Shah Commission which inquired into the excesses of the Emergency,has provided sufficient proof of Chawlas political leanings. Last year a petition was filed in the Supreme Court against Chawlas appointment but was withdrawn following the CECs submission that he had the authority to dismiss an errant EC.
A news item titled Religious leaders exhort society to fight terror unitedly says: To counter increasing terrorism and terror activities in the country the seers have decided to organise public meetings across the country between February 20 and March 20. Decision to this effect was taken by saints at a Sant Sammelan organised in Mumbai on January 30. The saints will conduct an awareness drive.
It adds: Addressing the gathering of more than one lakh people Sant Asaram Bapu said together we have to end terrorism from within and outside the country. For the uplift of the poor,those who are able,should provide education,health care,homestead and employment to them. With the help of outsiders and the missionaries,conspiracies are being hatched to defame the Hindu seers and their religious beliefs.
Compiled by Suman K Jha