Saturday, August 29, 2009

Classic Na"Pak" Raga

Dear Friends,
This evening, while I was checking my mails on a popular site, I was drawn to a news item in which Pakistan's eagerness to resume bilateral talks even in the face of Indian reluctance, was featured. It said- "Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, in a wide-ranging interview to a TV news channel, dispelled the impression that there is a deadlock between India and Pakistan over New Delhi's call for Islamabad to take action against outlawed Jamaat-ud-Dawaah chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed for his links to the Mumbai attacks and demanded legally tenable evidence against the Lashkar-e-Tayiba founder."
I was not at all surprised by the rather shameful statement of the Pakistani Foreign Minister. In any, case it speaks a lot about their legal and social systems and what else you would expect from a country which treats terrorists as "strategic assets" and where mostly overt and sometimes covert support to the killers, is part of normal state craft and discourse. Pakistan, as we, in India, always knew and world has known post 9/11, is the mother, father, uncle, grand pa, sister, brother and son of almost every terrorist act, no matter where it unfolds, in the recent times.
If a nation, worth its name, cannot prosecute a terrorist of Hafiz Mohammad Saeed's repute and cannot make a legally tight case against him, with all the evidences presented by Indian Government and FBI besides having an Interpol "red corner notice" in his name, then there is definitely something terribly wrong with that nation. We have seen that when others tell them to take action, then it is regarded as interference and left to them selves, everyone of us knows, they would rather heap praises on such rogue individuals and organisations and treat them as national heroes.
The question, which needs to be answered by the rational Pakistanis (I know, there are some after all), is that where this wayward and deviant policy will lead their society and their country in days and months to come. (I don't think they have years to find the right answers)
If the Pakistani establishment has a death wish and is in a "self destruct mode", then we can only pray and wish them well.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Shahrukh's experience of the US hospitality

Dear Friends,
This is my first blog entry in the month of August. Some how, I never was able to excite myself enough, to be compelled to share my views with you.
This morning, while we all were busy watching The Prime Minister making his routine and rather lack luster Independence Day speech from the Red Fort, TV news channels broke this news about Shahrukh Khan's interrogation at the Newark NJ airport, on security grounds. It was as if India's Independence Day had lost its importance and significance in just few minutes if not seconds, if one were to go by the coverage of this incident, by the Indian news channels.
I,being the eternal non-conformist, thought that it was most whimsical of us to sermonize and to tell US, how it should go about ensuring its security. While I have all the sympathy for Mr. Khan, I do also feel that we should instead appreciate that US Government is alive to its primary duty of protecting its citizens, much unlike India.
Do not forget, we Indians are good at nothing-we cannot protect our leaders (Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi) nor can the Indian Government ensure the security of its citizens (I don't think you require the long list of terror attacks which has killed and maimed thousands). Whereas, after the 9/11 attacks in2001, not a single bullet has been fired by a terrorist on the US soil, much less bombings and grenade attacks, of the scale and style we witness in India rather frequently. Isn't it to the credit of "no nonsense" approach of the US authorities, when it comes to their security and national interest? The United States Government is first answerable to its citizens and then to anybody else in India, where pontificating and sermonizing comes naturally to us, in keeping with our tradition of saints and tolerance.
If anything, we should emulate and appreciate their zero-tolerance policy to tackle the menace of terrorism. And, till such time we, in India, find a better way of protecting the precious lives of our leaders and the countrymen, and at the same time not insulting the vanity and pride of Bollywood stars and their ilk, let us not preach. God forbid, if the Americans start going soft on terrorism or if they become sentimental like us, then the consequences would be catastrophic, to say the least.
PS-(18th August,2009): Today's press conference by Shahrukh and his utterances , perhaps were an admission by him, though oblique, that he has come to his senses after all.
Remember the old adage-
"When you are in Rome, do as the Romans do". (If every other American sheds his/her clothes at the drop of a hat, why shouldn't Shahrukh?

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