Your interview with General Manoj Pande, Chief of Army Staff, was informative (‘China is our primary front now’, August 27). The Indian Army is one of the strongest armies in the world. We are surrounded by threats all over, and it is only because of the sacrifices made by our armed forces that we are able to sleep peacefully. Our soldiers endure profound hardships for our security, and one must never forget to acknowledge that. Let us stand with our heads bowed for the countless sacrifices our soldiers have made over the years.
Though Pande said that the Army is not in favour of permanent deployment along the LAC, I think the Army, the Air Force and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police will have enhanced deployment in eastern Ladakh in the coming years. The Chinese cannot be trusted.
Pakistan is no longer a major threat to India, so we should focus on boosting infrastructure along the Chinese border.
Your interview with the Army chief provided a comprehensive overview of the ongoing transformation and challenges in the military. His words such as, “Changes that will set a smooth transition” and “Integration is an inescapable way of life” will put our defence forces and officers on a high pedestal.
The cover story was indeed an enlightening read.
It is good that we have kickstarted the process to set up theatre commands. This is the need of the hour. It enables systematised usage of military resources through better command and control.
In the eventuality of a war, I am not sure whether a BJP government would like the theatre commanders to report to the Chief Defence Staff (CDS), which would then make it an all-powerful appointment. It could also disturb the equilibrium of civil-military links. Ideally, the BJP government would want the theatre commanders to report directly to the prime minister or the defence minister. I hope there is clarity on that in the coming days.
Call for digitisation
An overhaul of the criminal justice system is the need of the hour, but wider consultation is required (‘Crime and punishment, new edition’, August 27). Replacing the Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure and Indian Evidence Act will definitely bring sweeping reforms to the criminal justice system. Excessive delays in investigation and complex legal procedures have, on many occasions, caused delays in providing justice. Everything has to be digitised.
It would have been better to have the names of the new bills in English and Hindi. South Indian states and the northeast can use English names so that it is easy to decipher, and rest of the states can use Hindi names. Police officers, lawyers and judges in south India and the northeast would find it difficult to pronounce names in Hindi.
As a citizen of India, I wholeheartedly welcome the new bills. Change, after all, is inevitable. But, change also brings some apprehensions and doubts. The need for radical changes was felt for long. However, nothing much was done on that front and recommendations by various committees were gathering dust due to lack of action. The redundant laws added to the burden of the legal fraternity and there was a need to tackle the new age crime.
Judiciary is the last resort for disputants and endless delays makes one lose faith in the justice delivery mechanism. With the introduction of new laws, the legendary tareekh pe tareekh (date after date) will also be a thing of the past.
We will wait
Abhishek Bachchan has never been a favourite child of the box office (‘I am not happy with any of my performances’, August 27). Though a number of his films have received critical acclaim and his acting prowess has been recognised, junior Bachchan’s choice of scripts have not been up to the mark.
One big hit with a big-ticket director, with a strong storyline, saleable costars and a significant role, would catapult him up the ladder.
Happy and united
‘Divided colours of United India’ (August 20) was lively, hilarious and enjoyable. The narrators of different shades of India did an honest job of laughing at the nuances that are integral to different regions.
In particular, I liked the hilarious account of the Gujju’s sense and sensibility. In this age, when people carry tempers on their sleeves, this was much needed, to remind people that it is okay to laugh at oneself and not every criticism demands an action or reaction.
In laughter, people are not only happy and healthy, they are united, too.
The columns by Swara Bhasker are one-sided. They convey wrong messages. In her last column (August 20) she said Muslims are not safe in India. I don’t think so. It is completely false. I am from Hyderabad where Muslims are almost 30 per cent of the population. We live happily with each other.
Hindus are scared to go to Muslim-dominated areas of the old city, but Muslims have no such problem. I have plenty of Muslim friends and they love their motherland a lot.
Vijay Kumar Reddy,
The article ‘Say cheese’ (Aug 27) wrongly mentioned that Tikam Chand’s grandfather was a photographer of an erstwhile royal family of Rajasthan and that Chand had a cameo appearance in the film Bhagam Bhag. (He appeared in Shuddh Desi Romance.) We regret the errors.