It seems the genie uncorked by Mamata Banerjee in Nandigram is turning ‘Bhasmasura-like’ against her in Bhangar (‘High voltage revolt’, May 20).
The modus operandi of the agitation—declaring independence from government rule—has the unmistakable imprint of Maoist involvement. But, the government’s action to hastily invoke the old draconian land acquisition act exacerbated the feeling of betrayal in the villagers.
The conflict between existential dilemma and development strategy should be assuaged with a sensible and sensitive approach.
The high-voltage drama near Kolkata is sure to create havoc in West Bengal. It was obvious that the poor villagers would revolt if the government tried to snatch their means of living.
I feel this project is of no use to the villagers. Hence, measures should be undertaken to resolve the issue.
That the Banerjee-led government should have done this is more of an irony, considering it was her party—the Trinamool Congress—which had spearheaded the confrontation in Nandigram against the CPI(M). It is also reflective of the hypocrisy of mainstream political parties, which tend to play politics with issues of development—while in power it pursues projects irrespective of their impact, and opposes the same when not in power. Needless to say, such an approach bodes ill for all stakeholders.
P. Prasand Thampy,
Intimidation and forceful eviction of villagers violate democratic values. The health concerns aired by the villagers must be addressed by a high-level committee comprising scientists and environmentalists.
All said, the move by some villagers and their supporters—declaring certain villages ‘liberated’—cannot be justified, as it violates the law of the land.
Time is running out and it will be in the interest of all concerned to work towards an acceptable solution to the crisis, that has disrupted normal life in villages around the proposed national power project.
It appears from your story that Syed Salahuddin wants to give an impression to the readers that he is talking on behalf of Kashmiris, thereby forgetting that he belongs to a small, separatist group (‘India wants to suppress all Kashmiri voices’, May 20). Salahuddin’s so-called “peaceful solution” is ‘Azad Kashmir’. But, then, he cannot admit the reality that Pakistan will never accept the idea of ‘Azad Kashmir’.
Terrorists like Salahuddin should not be taken at face value. It is his organisation that is suppressing all Kashmiri voices and not India.
Kashmir will always remain an integral part of India. The Hizb militants have caused so many atrocities in Kashmir. I was delighted to know that they are now starved of men and material.
Stalin is in the best phase of his political career as the DMK has never had it so easy (‘Consolidation moves’, May 20). He is the only voice in Tamil Nadu who is consistently speaking against Narendra Modi.
The DMK will play an important role in 2019 in bringing down the NDA government at the Centre. Most likely, it will be the DMK that will form the government in Tamil Nadu in 2021, with Stalin as chief minister.
Shobhaa De’s column (‘Man-animal conflict’, May 20) had no substance. Such a column is sheer waste of space in a magazine like THE WEEK. Let us have something fruitful to read.
His mother and my mother
I enjoyed reading Shashi Tharoor’s article on his mother (‘Tough love’, May 20). I could feel every word in it. My mother is also 82. She, too, lives independently. She, too, is very active on social media. We joke to her that she will certainly be 102 not out. As we get old, the love only gets tender.
Tharoor’s article on his mother was inspiring. Most women, when they become widows, depend on friends or family to take life forward. But, Tharoor’s mother stands apart in choosing to remain independent. She lives alone in Kochi, doing everything herself, including cooking, using the internet for reading, sending e-mails and driving her car, even at the age of 82! A multi-talented woman, she is worthy of emulation.
Let me congratulate THE WEEK for featuring an excellent article on cannabis and its medicinal and commercial potential (‘Canna-biz’, May 20). I was totally unaware of the miraculous properties of the hemp. Amending the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985, is the need of the hour.
Cannabis should be promoted just like the bamboo in the northeast. More institutes like the Indian Institute of Integrated Medicine should be set up across the country.
Cannabis should not be regulated in India. There are so many medical and commercial uses of cannabis. State governments should promote the usage of cannabis.
Why Prakash Raj?
Perhaps this is the season of matinee idols and you have added one more to your kitty—Prakash Raj (‘This week, meet…’, May 20). The interview revealed some interesting details about the flip side of the star.
His replies to the queries display his immaturity. I have watched Raj’s television shows, where he shows impatience and replies in an intemperate language.
Riddhi Sen is a superb actor who has a bright future (’19, and set go’, May 20). I gather that he is the youngest winner in the best actor category.
Regional films have so many good performers, who are better than many Bollywood stars. But, sadly, they are not known outside their state.
It was good to know that this year’s national awards was not Bollywood-centric.
I was surprised to know that Jairam Ramesh finds Narendra Modi’s campaign high-decibel and one that gets crowd and everybody agog (‘Point blank’, May 20). More leaders from the Congress and other opposition parties should think like that. Modi’s popularity will come down when opposition leaders praise him. Modi thrives on the negative comments made by certain leaders. Why should one always criticise Modi?