* This refers to the editorial Letter and spirit (IE,October 2). Home Minister Sushilkumar Shindes letter to the states that no innocent Muslim should be detained illegally only reinforces the widely held belief that people from minority communities are not treated equally before law. It reflects badly not only on our criminal justice system but also on the Union government. Shindes effete directive is a product of vote bank politics and will prove to be counterproductive. At any rate,a matter as grave as one of people being systematically harassed under the pretext of law enforcement merits much more serious consideration. If people are being illegally detained by the police then more substantial steps must be taken.
* I agree with Letter and spirit (IE,October 2). The feeling that innocent Muslims are singled out and hounded in sensitive terror cases stems from past experiences. There appears to be a lack of diligence and common sense,coupled with a bigoted worldview,in such cases. However,Sushilkumar Shindes letter does not infuse any confidence in the system or in the corrective process he apparently seeks to set in motion. All persons must be dealt with according to the law. There must not be different standards for different communities. It is Shindes job to ensure that the rule book is adhered to by the police,failing which strict punitive action must be taken.
Not mutually exclusive
* This refers to Substance over form,please by Radha Kumar (IE,October 2). I agree that we should not lose sight of the substantive point of Rahul Gandhis outburst that the ordinance protecting convicted legislators is morally wrong. Indeed,most of us had not missed this point and had,in fact,felt hopeful that someone had broken the party line and listened to his conscience. But surely,substance and form are not mutually exclusive. When a young man,for whom the prime ministers chair is for the taking and whose wish could never be ignored by his party,publicly belittles his own government and prime minister,then it is more than a trivial question of form.
* This refers to He tried his best by C.Raja Mohan (IE,October 1). While noting that Rajiv Gandhi and Atal Bihari Vajpayee had invested much political capital and diplomatic energy to change the structure of India-Pakistan relations,the writer lets the Pakistani leadership off the hook for the failure of these efforts. Even Manmohan Singh went out of his way in Havana and Sharm el-Sheikh,but Pakistan did not honour its part of the commitment. This is the reason for the repeated failures.