India Deserves Permanent Seat at UN
INDIA rightly deserves a permanent membership at the UN Security Council and all the five permanent members should support the candidacy wholeheartedly. No one can deny the fact that India is a regional and global power and besides being the largest democracy can play a major role in shaping the future of the world if made a permanent member. The Security Council is long overdue for a major overhaul of composition and procedures and there is widespread support for revamping the UN’s most powerful body to reflect current global realities rather than the international power structure of the post-World War II when the UN came into existence with USA, UK, China, Russia and France as five permanent members of the Security Council. Another five countries should be inducted into the UN council – India, Brazil, Germany, Japan and South Africa. This will enhance the abilities of the Security Council to carry out its mandate and effectively meet the challenges of the world at large.
WENZEL D’MELLO, Mapusa
Of ‘Hazards’ and Criminal Negligence
THE criminal neglect vis-à-vis the ‘hazards’ permitted by the government that kill and maim people regularly is unacceptable. A two and a half year old boy, who had recently fallen into a 230-feet borewell at a village in Tamil Nadu and reportedly been rescued, was declared dead. The PWD and other government agencies regularly dig up roads and dangerously leave them open and unmarked. Cannot the government ensure safety by holding someone accountable to enforce these safety rules? The courts have issued orders and guidelines on PILs on this issue. The executive fault the courts for judicial activism; but will this criminal negligence be taken very seriously if there is contempt of court?
JOHN ERIC GOMES, Porvorim
Upholding Diversity of India
ONE often hears that diversity is under threat in the present day India. India is the oldest surviving culture. All other ancient cultures have died out and they are replaced by new ones. But the Indian culture has survived. In the course of the chequered history of our civilization, people of different stocks and cultures came to India and made India as their home. There were no cases of religious persecution in India. The communal virus appeared during the British rule. Our politicians sowed the seeds of communalism during the independence struggle, aided and abetted by the British. Since then the same saga of communalism continued with the additional fuel supplied by the present day politicians. Because of the vote-bank politics, there have been continuous attempts to demonize the majority community. The interest of the majority community is sacrificed at the altar of political expediency. There was a time when the political lexicon was littered with terms of appeasement. Some of the religious leaders openly urge people not to vote for a particular party during any election. Are they fostering national unity? When the majority community tries to claim its share in the political space, it is termed as a threat to diversity of Indian culture. In Kashmir, the members of one community were driven away from their place of birth and they are not allowed to return. Is this inhuman action symbolizes celebration of diversity? Vast majority of Indians, including the members of the majority community, are secular at the core. Hating other religions and their way of life is not the ethos of Indian culture. By making irresponsible statements like, India’s diversity is at threat’ an attempt is made to build social tension. Diversity in India is not a facial makeup that can be wiped out by a tissue paper. At the same time, respecting diversity cannot be a one-way traffic; each religious, regional, language or caste group has to learn to respect the culture and way of life of others. The onus of responsibility lies with all of us. But too much pluralism can be harmful in the long run.
S N D POOJARY, Miramar