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Force first

The Naxalite attacks across the “red corridor” on the first day of the Lok Sabha elections is an assault on Indian democracy.....

April 20, 2009 12:55:50 am

•The Naxalite attacks across the “red corridor” on the first day of the Lok Sabha elections is an assault on Indian democracy (‘First phase,Naxals cast their bullet’,IE,April 17). The magnitude of this internal threat has been obvious all this while and thus we feel all the more let down by the Union home ministry. Not only have the Maoists been killing civilians and security personnel for a long time but with the general elections begun India’s image abroad is taking a beating. While there’s no denying that economic uplift is necessary to eradicate the Maoist threat altogether,right now what we need is rapid and large-scale armed action.

— Hemant A. Sant


Old tricks

• In the editorial ‘Listening in’ (IE,April 10) you have rightly said that although the Obama administration has come up with the new Af-Pak strategy,India should be prepared for some big initial mistakes by the US and characteristic over-reach by Pakistani generals. After all,Pakistan wants American money with no strings attached and hopes to continue with its pretence of fighting terror. Pakistan is trying to shift US attention to the India-Pak problem. America is also being misled that Islamabad can meet the challenge from extremists if only India eased pressure on the eastern border. India is doing nothing to

prevent Pakistan from launching a proper military drive.

— Dilbag Rai Chandigarh

A turnaround?

•The credibility of the Left,at its nadir during the nuclear deal debate,seems to be rising again. The Left has authored the so-called Third Front and many prominent leaders lost no time in acknowledging the UPA’s debt to the Left for its survival through most of its term. And now,Manmohan Singh himself has praised the

Marxists. Is this a recognition of the communists’ potential to still return a sizeable number of MPs to Parliament?

— Arun Malankar


Little choice

•During the Kandahar hijack,the NDA government buckled under pressure; but so would have any government in its place (‘If I was home minster…’,IE,April 16).It was a tricky situation indeed,with so many Indian lives at stake.

Wasn’t it right to prioritise those lives? Besides,the Kandahar episode cannot be compared with 26/11 technically.

— Manoj Agrawal


•P. Chidambaram’s contention that if he were home minister during the Kandahar crisis he wouldn’t have released terrorists is ridiculous. He seems to have made this claim without understanding the ground realities of a hijack,with many hostages held by foreign actors in a foreign land. If Chidambaram were home minister then and refused to release terrorists,and the hostages died as a result,what would he have said to their families? Again,after the massacre,would he have still sent commandos to nab the hijackers? And how would he have managed the global reaction?

— S. Krishna Kumar


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