Apropos The Dispersal Of Policy (Mar 5), the need of the hour is a two-, or at most, three-party system at the Centre. That will stop the central government from being held to ransom by regional parties who only look to further their own agenda of holding onto power.
Rubal Chakravorty, Ranchi
It’s surprising to have something as distant as the Teesta river being equated with the killing of fishermen. Mamata Banerjee is no Oomen Chandy—one is a no-holds-barred street fighter, the other is genuinely concerned about law and order.
Jose Jacob, Kottayam
As an ex-merchant navy captain, I have to appreciate the Italian government for supporting the captain and crew of Enerica Lexie (The Dispersal of Policy, Mar 5). If an Indian ship had been caught in a similar situation, we wouldn’t have got 10 per cent of the help from the Indian government. That said, I don’t understand why the ship captain wasn’t arrested. The shooting wouldn’t have happened without his implicit orders.
Federalism can be taken too far. Foreign policy must be the sole preserve of the Central government. States can try to influence the Center, but they cannot have any independent policies or practises in relation to any foreign government that is in conflict with national foreign policy.
If the precedent set by the Ottavio Quattrocchi case is taken into consideration, the Italians need not fear the Indian criminal justice system. What is a cause for concern, however, is the pressure being applied by the Church to influence the resolution of what is essentially a secular problem.
Disappointingly, in the heat and dust generated by this case, the need for giving financial compensation to the families of the dead fishermen is being quietly ignored.
No doubt the two Italian marines could be charged for murder under the Indian law and punished, sending them to prison for years and make the tax payers to pay for their maintenance in jail. But what happens to the bereaved fishermens' families who lost their bread winners? Instead, why can't we ask the Italian government to pay compensations to the fishermens' families so as to keep them alive? After all it is not a premeditated murder case. An unfortunate accident as a result of misunderstanding. If our MEA were to be guided by the whims and fancies of the states where dirty politics only are in play to survive, then it would end up the way the donkey had by listening to the advices of many as to how it has to do it's job.
Kerala shows its done.
It's quiet surprising to have something as distant as a Teesta river being equated with the killing of fishermen. Mamata Banerjee is no Oommen Chandy, there is a huge difference between the two - one is a street fighter and has no interest in law and order and the other is genuinely concerned about law and order situation. As for Jayalalitha, the least said the better - she is a crook who will try anything to appease people - includng stalling a nuclear power station which until now was no issue at all. It's a shame the way she is going about, first agreeing to the power plant and once done, trying to annule it - there is a simple word for it - an opportunist. As for the Posco agitation - it's another form of reneging on your commitments and trying to squeeze in more demands at a later point in time and it's shameful. If ever there is a simile to it, it's the Jaitapur agitation - it's grassroots struggle against what the residents of the village feel is not to be welcome, basic reasoning - it's earthquake prone zone. Never in the history of India has and international incident like this being pursued with law being kept in the front; be it Purulia, be it Bhopal, be it the terrorist strikes against India, be it the cooling towers of a power plant built by the Chinese etc. To trivialize it as a election issue, it's taking things a bit far. Let the law decide and now things are in the hands of the district magistrate in Quilon and with the HC in Kochi. Then there is the SC in Delhi and after that politics can intervene.
The need of the hour is a two or at most three party system at the centre. It will stop the central government being help to ransom by regional parties who only look to further their own agenda of holding onto power. There is need for education to reach the common masses, so that they can differentiate between real and imagined problems. Thirdly there should be due diligence done before deciding on any project to avoid any controversy being created by people with suspicious motives later on.
In one line the political system in India has gone to the dogs!!
The national mandate is increasinly becoming an agglomeration of state level verdicts but there is no reason to believe that the national interest consists merely of the arithmetic sum of what the governments of the day regard as the interests of their states.
A government which doesn't give two hoots about hundreds of people killed by Pakistani terrorists is suddenly worried about two fishermen killed by Italians, that too due to a misunderstanding? Politicians who otherwise don't give a damn about clearing environmentally damaging projects suddenly opposing nuclear power plants sanctioned by their rivals? One can be sure that there is a political agenda behind every ostensible act of concern in India!
As for the comment left by V.N.K Murti, dams don't break because of hue and cry. The hue and cry is so that sufficient care is taken to deal with the consequences of dam breakage or better yet, prevent any such incident at all.
The issue was silenced because the Tamil people felt it was okay to use violence against the Malayalees living in Tamil Nadu. Perhaps, more discerning states such as Kerala should have shown better judgement and treat these matters on a long term basis and not just publicize issues every now and then. But this is now being dealt with in a more reasonable fashion. In-depth studies are being done to understand the dam's weaknesses and, hopefully, a plan will also be in place for any disaster mitigation.
The case of Italians killing 2 Indian fishermen is a national issue.
That the case will be tried by the Kerala State high court and Law & Order be enforced by the Kerala Police does not 'disperse' India policy in any way. The case has been handled in an exemplary manner by the State. In addition, for similar such incidents in future, a process will have been put in place. When the leg work is being done by the States, why do you feel the Centre needs to interfere?
I understand you wanted to make a case for India's economic interests and allow for resource grab by the Centre. Murder on the coastal seas of Kerala stands as an odd man out in your article.
As for economic interests and your backing for Centre resource grabs, they have their own complications and matters are best negotiated where their consequences will be most felt. That would be the respective States. The Centre wants to show results and change, then they need to up their game and make a better argument.
The whole episode is like the recently silenced
Mullaperiar dam outburst.. Did the dam break even after so much hue and cry?
Let the byelection over, the Italian crime will go to backwaters.
But since ours is a federal state,the state govts. dealing direcly with
other nations has its consequences.
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