This refers to the editorial ‘Street theatre’ (IE, March 5). The fact is that the omnipresent electronic media is equally responsible for the new found street activism among our politicians. Politicians are perpetually media hungry. If they do not get enough coverage, they face the risk of becoming irrelevant. The electronic media are also constantly on the lookout for new, sensational stories that will get them more eyeballs. Electronic media must not encourage the absurd antics of politicians. I suspect that few politicians find it worth their while to continue their “protests” once the cameras are turned off and the curtains come down.
— Shrinivas Mathdevru
I have never understood some people’s objections to elected officials staging street protests and dharnas. Do elected representatives lose their constitutionally guaranteed rights to freedom of speech, expression, association and protest once they assume office? People seem to forget that some major popular movements that have been successful included elected representatives among their support bases. Recall, for instance, the US civil rights movement and the accompanying protests. However, the increasing incidence of street protests in India can only be attributed to the growing chasm between the unresponsive Central government and the people.
— Amar Madnani
Reverse Robin Hood
This refers to ‘You told us go to hell, says Supreme Court, sends Subrata Roy to jail’ (IE, March 5). It is heartening that we have a Supreme Court that does not spare even the big fish. It was good that Subrata Roy has been sent to jail. Here is a man who has long been browbeating the law. He has fooled and robbed poor, unsuspecting investors. Roy has been known to flaunt his wealth vulgarly. He is also known for his close connections to film stars, politicians and cricketers. It is shameful that a man who is so well-off himself owes poor investors thousands of crores. The anger against him was palpable when a protester threw ink in his face and called him a “thief”? The way some film industry personalities have come to Roy’s defence is shameful.
— R.D. Singh
What about growth
This refers to the editorial ‘Growth defects’ (IE, march 5). The third quarter GDP numbers portray a worrisome picture of the economy. The ripple effects of banning mining, delays in environmental clearances and general policy paralysis are still being felt in the GDP numbers. The current fiscal year is going to be the second consecutive year of below 5 per cent growth — something that hasn’t happened since the pre-reforms 1980s.
— Rohit Vyas