India-China Agreement On Disengagement
The India-China agreement on disengagement at Pangong Tso in Ladakh is certainly a promising start towards peace. However, stabilising the borders could take a long time. The Indian and Chinese troops are expected to stop their forward positions on either side of Pangong in a phased manner. The troops will have to return to the pre-April 2020 position. However, the surprisingly hasty decision of China to withdraw its troops raises doubts about its intentions. What could have prompted China to take such a hasty decision ? It is reasonable to assume that Beijing’s strategic move is linked to the US factor of interfering in the Ladakh standoff. In spite of the attempts by both countries to end the row peacefully through dialogue, talks between the two sides remained in a state of complete deadlock. The takeaways are clear here: China has been moving cautiously since the Biden administration took a decision on the China-centric Quad and Indo-Pacific strategy. In the recent telephonic conversation between US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, both of them had reiterated their commitment to a strong India-US relationship. China’s disengagement could be linked to deterring India from joining the US-led alliance. China wants to lessen the prospect of India partnering with the new administration to form an anti-China coalition.
VENU G S, Kollam
On Multipurpose Cyclone Shelter
A massive multipurpose cyclone shelter, estimated to cost around Rs 4.38 crore, is set to come up at Zuarinagar in Sancoale in the Mormugao talkua. It is learnt that the project will be funded by the World Bank and is expected to be completed by March 2022. This will serve as a major rehabilitation shelter at the time of a natural calamity as Goa is a coastal state and a natural calamity is within the realm of possibility. It is understood that the cyclone shelter would be used during a calamity as also for organising various activities and local functions. It would be desirable to reserve the cyclone shelter only for crisis situations as one can never be sure when a natural calamity will strike. Other activities and social functions can be organised at venues meant for such functions. As and when the Kala Bhavan at Sancoale becomes operational, it can be used for social functions. It is pertinent to note that if (God forbid) a natural calamity like a cyclone does strike the state, there will be very little time available to shift people affected in North Goa to the facility being made available at Sancoale in South Goa.
ADELMO FERNANDES, Vasco
Democracy Being Diluted
To prevent India becoming a police state used by the government against the people like the British did and worse, the Supreme Court issued directives in 2006, one of which was on promotions and recruitment. The law must give justice and be applied equally, be you so high or low. No State implemented the directives in letter and spirit. Our politicians fought tooth and nail against it! Fourteen years back Goa did establish a PEB (Police Establishment Board) which had DGP as chairman and specified senior police officers and an SP as member secretary to decide all transfers, promotions, postings, and other service related matters. It is reported that our government created a DPC (Departmental Promotions Committee) to replace PEB with bureaucrats with chairman as Chief Secretary or his nominee, administrative secretary/head of department member etc! This government control is dangerous as can be seen on police brutality unleashed on people trying to exercise their democratic freedom guaranteed to them by their Constitution. The government are erroneously termed ruling party when elected and enforce ruling due control of police by recruitment and promotions based on servitude of police who have vast powers, now used to enforce their writ on hapless citizens. This will be the death of freedom and Democracy! There are draconian laws like UAPA made for terrorists where the courts and citizens are helpless if misused. Even if courts eventually free a citizen wrongly arrested and incarcerated, there is no compensation on earth that can restore personal dignity violated and lost life and freedom behind bars! Today for filling vacancies Goa government has reportedly amended rules to bypass The Goa staff selection Committee. Recruiting and promoting the wrong people in the wrong way sponsored by politicians and vested interests is dangerously counter productive for in more ways than one! There should not be any injustice towards innocent people.
John Eric Gomes, Porvorim