"The fact is terror is a threat to Pakistan. And it has been a threat to India for a long time now," said India's high commissioner to Pakistan, Shiv Shankar Menon, soon after the Havana meeting.Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf agreed in Havana to create a joint anti-terrorist "mechanism".
In the aftermath of the recent Mumbai blasts in July we were told that the blasts were carried out by groups from within Pakistan and they could provide evidence of the same.The prime minister broke off Foreign Secretary level talks with Pakistan. But now we seem to be on the same side of the table, both victims of terrorism. What changed? and do we have a right to know?
Referring to the above statement from Havana,G Parthasarathy, a former Indian ambassador to Pakistan said:"It constitutes a dilution and a surrender of our position on terrorism."
Commenting on the same Swapan dasgupta says, "Life is at a permanent discount in India" and he calls us a "Nation led by wimps." He adds, "Like the liveried attendant in parliament who slammed the door on the attackers and paid with his life, the victims of terrorism end up as statistics - mourned for the mandatory fortnight and then dumped into the dustbins of history."
Sad, scary!

In another development, veteran criminal lawyer Ram jethmalani decides to defend the prime accused Manu Sharma in the jessica lal case. Now he will use every trick in the book to set his client free even stooping to the extent of casting aspersions on the victim. "I wont do anything, but everything for my client."
The only principle this notoriously "argumentative Indian" will uphold in all this is his loyalty to the client who can afford to pay for his services.
In this country it is possible to engage in criminal activity and bribe the police to destroy evidence, use muscle power to threaten witnesses to turn hostile and employ the best legal brains to get you out!

How safe do you feel living in India today being a honest taxpaying "common man", who shops in crowded malls and commutes by public transport?
10 Responses
  1. Mahadevan Says:

    Can anyone forget late Shri V.K.Krishna Menon's 8 hours, non stop, extempore, defence of our position in Kashmir, at a UN General Assembly Session, at the end of which he collapsed on the floor ? Mr.Menon used to say repeatedly in every forum, "Kashmir's accession to India is full, final and irrevocable". Current day politcians should realise that Mr.Menon was politically on their left, more vociforous and intellectually miles ahead. G.Parthasarathi is well informed on Kashmir and all Pakistan related matters and his views should be respected.

    The Anti-terorist squad of Mumbai did a fine job in identifying the culprits, and yet we are hesistant because of political compulsions. Today political compulsions are so high that even the views of National Security Cell, headed by the PM's hand picked man, is not respected.

    About Jessica Lal's case, if a few publicly spirited men/women are permitted to implead themselves in the case, they can pick a hundred holes in Mr.Ram Jethmalani's studied arguments.

    Th last sentence in your penaltimate para, superbly sums up the happenings in the country today.

  2. So now we're on the same side as pakistan? Just cant believe this is happening. its like 'Sleeping with the Enemy'.Where are the nations leaders leading us? They say - every nation deserves the leaders it get? Do we really deserve this?

  3. i really wouldn't trust pak with anything

  4. passerby55 Says:

    A good post, Usha.

    Looks like we all know that loyalty to corruption and lies pays in India

    Sometimes the whole system...makes you ask Why? People know the right, they also know before hand the real victims will go scotfree..

    A funniest part is to get our own ration card and gasconnection some years ago, we had to walk the same path.

    A person who wnats to challenge is ridiculed and labeled MAD.

    btw.USha, you removed the other post. but i thought you could have let our comments remain. its just only a thot, nothing serious.


  5. Anonymous Says:

    I remember exchanging a chain of emails about the Mumbai blasts. My cousin, among others, seemed sick & tired of "proposed diplomatic solutions" & the underlying sentiment was indeed that of "life is at a permanent discount in India". There was a point of view which said that while the Iraq war is totally unjustified, it gave a strong message about how American lives are valued.

    In that discussion as in this comment, I'm inclined to think of retaliation as a reaction, & not so much as a solution.

    Pakistan & India need to talk unconditionally to address their issues. If terrorism is not seen as the political tool in Pakistan to bring India to the table, that might be a good thing.

    I believe that Pakistan's economy is fueled by aid & its strategic position close to Afghnistan. It is possible to hurt them badly just by economic sanctions. But I wonder if a country in total anarchy is really to anybody's advantage - as we witness the unfolding civil war in Iraq.

    As is often the case, a lot in the world can be criticized in isolation but it takes an immense amount of skill to solve problems holistically.


  6. Usha Says:

    Mahadevan: I remember a dialogue from the film Roja where the young wife asks the minister if they would act in the same way if someone powerful had been held hostage by terrorists. Why is the life of 187 innocent people not worth anything for the powers that be? And why would you want to forgive a country and shake hands with it when they shelter men who mastermind the blowing up of our parliament? Strange people, politicians!

    Somethingtosay:Looks like we do - another election and people will vote them back to power and treat them like Gods!

    ITW:I think we conduct talks and carry on diplomacy without solving the basic issues. That is the cause of the mistrust worthy behaviour from both sides.

    Passerby:I am sure we can change it if only we would care.
    The post is back.

    Souvik: I also do not believe in war being a solution.It only leads to more people being killed.
    But when we claim that we have conclusive proof of the involvement of a country in something as grave as Mumbai blasts and within 3 months change our position and hug them and say that they are as much Victims as we are, the public has a right to know who was lying and when and why.
    If we had conclusive proof we should be able to demonstrate it ot the international community and get them to back us in imposing sanctions against the country that manufactures and exports terror. If not we should stop taking shelter behind accusations against Pakistan and mislead our public.
    I guess we elect them and give them the power only in the hope they will solve it holistically.

  7. Paavai Says:

    As long as one does not have deal with cops and courts - India is a safe place.

  8. Anonymous Says:

    Yes, proofs about Pakistan's involvement with terrorist acts are not a new thing. Mumbai blasts are just one of many. You must be aware of the Azaad Kashmir propaganda. If Militancy in Kashmir is seen as terrorism, then we & the world always has had conclusive proof of Pakistan's support for terror. There are plentiful other instances too.

    It is interesting that India continues to emphasize that the Kashmir problem is between the two countries, & does not want any international intervention. It is also interesting that dating that letter of accession that Hari Singh signed has not produced anything conclusive .

    So while Menon might get off his rhetorics about Kashmir, it is by no means an absolutely clear picture. Nehru had his own part to play about Kashmir.

    Having said all that, sanctions are a punitive measure of sorts. In the end, however, it is really a subcontinental problem & cannot be solved by punsihment.

    The plurality of Pakistan as in India is both the victim & the criminal that perpetrates violence. There are multiple interest groups within each country & so.

    I have lots more to say & learn on the topic. If there is one thing we subcontinentals are, it is political.

    Write something apolitical lootenant, & save your blog from my neverending rants.


  9. hari Says:


    In a single line I can define India as:

    A Democratic country with a Government of the politicians, for the politicians and by the Politicians.

    There is no room or life for a common man in India.

  10. Anonymous Says:

    Well written Usha. But some comments on the last lines there.

    The common man doesn't pay taxes. And he doesn't shop in crowded malls either. Though use of public transport is apt to describe one!

    On a serious note, from the looks of it, don't you think it indeed is damn easy to take lives in our country? So many crowded places, such lax internal security setup. But the fact that there aren't 100 blasts happening everyday gives me confidence. That, overwhelming majority of us are peace loving. And possibly, the internal security setup isn't as lax as it seems.