Wharton episode: A selective conscience
It is unfortunate that students and professors of Wharton School and others who would have attended the India Economic Forum have missed a golden opportunity to learn about the pragmatic economic development principles adopted by Narendra Modi. They seem to be too caught up with the American economy and the bungling by the manipulative mandarins of the Senate! Inhuman behaviour as understood by those who have opposed Modi’s participation, is based on hearsay about the 2002 Gujarat riots. The Godhra train deaths and the massacre of innocent Sikhs in 1984 is probably just history for these people. They will not challenge American gun laws, despite the repeated massacres of children, or the American government’s role in Pakistan where innocent Muslims are being killed in the campaign against the Taliban. The capacity to discern right from wrong is known as moral sense, or conscience. Let me point out that even Nobel laureate Amartya Sen, who is concerned with welfare economics, never blamed Modi for the 2002 riots.
—AS Raj, by email
The argument that Narendra Modi is a democratically elected lawmaker is frivolous. In India today, we see anti-socials and even criminals elected, in the absence of a ban on tainted candidates. And there are more than a few of such elements in our legislative bodies. Uttar Pradesh Cabinet minister Raja Bhaiya, who was forced to resign on accusation of his involvement in the murder of a deputy superintendent of police, is an example. As for Americans pretending to be the upholders of human rights, it’s a sham, for Uncle Sam’s hands are bloodied with war crimes and human rights violations across the world, from Vietnam to Guantanamo Bay. They have, therefore, no moral right to point a finger at Modi, or anybody else for that matter.
—KP Rajan, Mumbai
The decision to cancel the keynote address by Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi to the Wharton India Economic Forum is audacious. This is a snub to Indians, especially the citizens of Gujarat who have elected him thrice to lead the state government. Just suppose Modi does becomes prime minister next year, will the United States be able to continue to ignore him, just because a few hypocrites in that country oppose him? It absurdity of the opposition to Modi is disappointing. Who knows, there may come a time soon when these hypocrites are compelled to bow down to the verdict of the Indian voters when Modi becomes prime minister.
— VS Ganeshan, Bangalore
Narendra Modi should brush aside the Wharton issue and focus on the more important business that he has in India. Similarly, he shouldn’t bother to seek a US or Europe visa, may be even reject it if one is offered to him. These countries are keeping Modi at arms length for alleged human rights violations in the Gujarat riots, while conveniently ignoring the atrocities they have committed in other states. Even today, the West continues to support governments the world over, that are committing atrocities against their own citizens. The BJP should learn a lesson from the Chinese leaders who never aspired to travel to the West, but made them come to China.
— N Ramamurthy, Chennai
Figure this, Ajit
Before challenging Maharashtra Navnirman Sena chief Raj Thackeray, the Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar should remember that had it not been for the presence of a large number of MNS candidates in the 2009 Assembly elections, the tally of the Congress-Nationalist Congress Party alliance would have been lower by at least 20 seats. The fledgling outfit helped the coalition by eating into a large chunk of votes of the Shiv Sena-Bharatiya Janata Party combine which was evident in the narrow margin of votes by which some of its candidates were defeated.
—Vineet Phadtare, Mumbai
Obituary for Aussie cricket
Many years ago, the “Sporting Times” published a mock obituary of English Cricket. We could adapt it for the Australians who surrendered in the second Test at Uppal this way: “In affectionate remembrance of Australian Cricket which suffered a stroke at MAC and died at Uppal on March 5, 2013. Deeply lamented by a large circle of sorrowing friends and acquaintances. - RIP. Note: The body will be taken to Melbourne for the funeral at the Australian Cricket Academy and the Ashes will be spread in Sydney.”
—Maniam Ramani, Vashi
Congratulations to the Indian team on winning the second Test against Australia by an innings and 135 runs. The new Mr Dependable, Cheteshwar Pujara, Murali Vijay, Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were the chief architects of the victory. Hats off to MS Dhoni who has become India’s most successful captain. However, there were two disappointments: Virender Sehwag with the bat and Harbhajan Singh with the ball. I am sure that both these players will not be seen in the remaining two Tests.
— Manoj Shah, Mumbai
Cricket over cash
Cheteshwar Pujara has by his superb performance once again brought joy to many who have described him as the next Dravid. The main reason for his sublime form is his focus on Test cricket and the distance he has kept from the cash-rich IPL. The boy from Saurashtra has not been lured by the money and concentrates on his game hard. Well done young man!
—Nikhil Rai, Mumbai
Whiteboard for kids
Apropos of “Blue trees, purple skies and a lot of fun”, nowadays many parents are better off financially, so they pamper their children with the latest toys and gadgets. At times, parents scold the kids if they happen to damage these expensive things. Instead, parents should buy them a whiteboard and a marker. These simple items will help unleash the child’s imagination and creativity. This way the kids would spend more time on the white board instead of the idiot box and this could also spur interest in studies.
—Ketan R Meher, by email