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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

To reform CBI

This refers to Justice J.S. Verma’s very instructive column ‘Incredible CBI’.

Written by The Indian Express |
April 14, 2009 12:16:12 am

• This refers to Justice J.S. Verma’s very instructive column ‘Incredible CBI’. To come to the heart of the matter,there are only two institutions which function with both autonomy and freedom — the country’s higher judiciary and the UPSC. Lately,the Election Commission has joined them. The CBI’s tragedy is that it does not have statutory status,being a creature of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act,even given its very vital function of checking corruption and investigating crimes of the most atrocious kind,like the 1984 Sikh riots.

Autonomy can make a vital difference to its functioning. Governments have changed; different parties have ruled from the Centre,yet,not one of them has attempted to ensure that this vital investigative agency be placed on a statutory footing.

As for Verma’s point that “reaching the top of the profession should be considered sufficient reward and lifetime achievement”,would it not be better if the appointment of the director,CBI,is entrusted to a small committee in which the second person should be the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha?

— Prasad Malladi

Nidadavole

Is it real?

• Amulya Gopalakrishnan’s ‘Caught or Not’ highlights an interesting paradox of postmodern public life which is bound to come increasingly into play. Whereas the omnipresent gaze of the camera has made the public figures more conscious and responsible about what they say and do in front of others,the same technology (digital image processing) is the means of undermining the veracity of the image.

The simplicity of “seeing is believing” getting transformed into “seeing and maybe not believing” is an interesting complication. I am reminded of the film ‘Camera Buff’ by Kieslowski,in which a simple documentary made by a hobbyist plays havoc with the management of an organisation.

Modern digital technology and pixel churning in all their refinements shall give ever new dimensions to the race between gaze and reality,and engender innovative ideas and aspects of dissimulation from our politicians and other public figures. And like the race between the police and the thief,it should be never-ending. Or all the fun of the game will be lost. To maintain a straight face and composure in the face of visual evidence requires transcendental forms of audacity and obstinacy.

— Jagrut Gadit Vadodara

Language issues

• This is with reference to your editorial ‘Translate this’ on the Samajwadi Party’s antiquated worldview as manifested in its poll promises. By putting curbs on English medium education and computers and opposing mechanised farming and stock trading,aren’t the SP leaders taking people back to 18th century?

— K.P. Rajan Mumbai

Well done

• The emphatic victory of the Indian team in Azlan Shah Hockey Tournament clearly shows that they are capable of achieving great success in international tournaments.

— Vinay Kapur

Ahmedabad

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