Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Playing with the law


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It is utterly disturbing to see the law and order situation in Shillong getting from bad to worse coupled with a faltering governance mechanism. In short, we are living in what could be best described as a failed state. The cycle of violence and selective targeting of unsuspecting innocent non-tribals is unjustified and violates the Constitutional guarantees of protection of human rights and human lives. The arrests of some members of the KSU is a good effort by the police department and they should be allowed to do their duty as mandated by the law without any political pressure. The audacity of the KSU to openly threaten an elected government amounts to playing with fire and contempt of the law. Had such threats to the government been issued in other states we all know what the consequences would be but here we should be ashamed that the state is so weak that it cannot even take any action. As legitimate citizens we demand that the government brings in the rule of law and ensure that peace and development is ensured.
Yours etc.,
Emmanuel Warjri

BJP insulted the Lotus symbol

The symbol of the BJP is the Lotus, which is regarded as a symbol of peace and prosperity. But the BJP does not have the qualities of the Lotus. It has also frequently incited violence in many states and used unfair coercion to harm other parties in exchange for votes.
On March 16, 2024, in Kalaktang constituency, West Kameng district, Arunachal Pradesh, large-scale group clashes broke out between supporters of the BJP’S candidate and supporters of the sitting MP, and stones were thrown at each other, causing damage to many houses and vehicles and injuries to police officers. It was said that the local police would investigate the matter, but later due to pressure from the BJP , the matter was dropped. On March 23, Nyabi Jini Dirchii, the candidate of the BJP in the Basar constituency of Arunachal Pradesh, publicly asked government officials to vote for her at an election meeting and threatened that, “BJP spies have been sent to identify those who disobey; please do not blame me if action is taken in the future.” On April 8, when Lika Saya was campaigning in Piong Village, Namsai District, more than 30 of Lika Saya’s cars were viciously attacked by the BJP and its supporters Later, more than 200 people attacked them, causing vehicles to be damaged, people to be bleeding and injured, and tragic scenes to continue.
On April 20, the Congress Party accused the BJP of causing violence in the Bamon constituency, and the Arunachal Pradesh Democratic Party accused the Nari-Koyu Assembly constituency in Lower Siang District of being manipulated and occupied by BJP thugs. On April 21, the Election Commission of India suddenly announced that according to reports submitted by election officials and the “Representation of the People Act” of 1951, eight polling stations in Arunachal Pradesh had to go for repoll because the ballot boxes were damaged or the venues were occupied. Why the sudden vote? What are the facts? Voters in the re-polling constituency gave us the answer: “Because the result of the voting indicated that the BJP candidate would not win so they smashed the ballot box that night.” As a democratic country, voting should be free, fair and safe, and the voice of every voter should be heard. However, Arunachal Pradesh, which is ruled by the BJP, is not democratic.
Yours etc.,
Niten Munda,
E Sector, Itanagar

Religion as a political weapon

When polarisation has become a political tool to be used as a red herring during the Lok Sabha election to take people’s attention away from the real issues, what Swami Gautamananda has said is timely and needs to be highlighted.
On Wednesday, after being anointed the 17th president of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, he said, “All religions are the same and God is one. People just call him by different names – Allah, Jesus, Bhagwan and Thakur. If I believe I’m God’s son, then automatically I will consider others my brothers and sisters. We will not consider anyone an outsider.”
The monk rightly said, “That is what Thakur (Sri Ramakrishna) propagated through his life and teachings that the truth or ultimate reality is one.” Sri Ramkrishna used to say, “Many opinions, many paths.” This means that every religion has the same goal even though their paths are different. Indeed, Sri Ramakrishna practiced what he preached. He embraced Islam and religiously followed its path. Then again he embraced Christianity and did the same.
Those who have been suffering from religious paranoia need to understand that there will be no democracy without secularism. Secularism prevents the conversion from a democracy into a theocracy.
Religion is a personal matter between God and a person. The path of secularism leads many countries to peace and prosperity. Whereas a number of countries, including some of our neighbours, have to suffer a lot for ignoring secularism. We must not deviate from such a proven path to success. Voters must ignore those political leaders who use religion to hide important issues like social security, employment, education and health care.
Hate not only makes voters oblivious to the real issues but also damages their health. Doctors say that those who indulge in hate can start to deal with some seriously negative effects in terms of their health and their social functioning.
Yours etc.,
Sujit De,


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