OPINION

H K Dua

Give Kashmir a ceasefire
26.05.17 - H K Dua*

Remember how Vajpayee government touched hearts with a similar move 
 
Several prominent citizens from different walks of life have called for a declaration of ceasefire in Kashmir during the month of Ramzan, beginning on Friday. Their appeal needs to be immediately heeded, both by the Centre and the state government.

Those who have appealed for a ceasefire include Yashwant Sinha of the NDA who recently led a citizens’ team to J&K to make a bid for the restoration of peace. The other eminent people include Air Marshal Kapil Kak (retd.), Wajahat Habibullah, Justice A.P. Shah, Salman Haider, J.F. Riberio, A.S. Dulat, Aruna Roy, Syeda Hameed, Zoya Hasan, Prem Shankar Jha and Bharat Bhushan.

The appeal has been addressed to the Centre and the PDP-BJP government in the state to take a lead in declaring that the security forces will resort to shooting only in extreme situations and in self-defence. "Let there be no ...
  


Space for democracy is shrinking
19.12.16 - H K Dua

Strength and quality of a democratic polity in a large measure depends on the functioning of the constitutional institutions -Parliament, the Executive and the Judiciary. Over the last 70 years since Independence these have declined in their effectiveness and prestige.

Parliament and state legislatures no longer enjoy the respect of the people who in the initial years of Independence used to look to them with awe and sometimes with reverence.  Unchecked, Influence of money, criminalisation of politics and demonstrative disregard of democratic norms and rules have led to internal decay of Parliament and State Assemblies.  The Executive is callous, distant from the people and indifferent to their problems. The people still look to the court as the last hope but overburdened with crores of cases and some shortcomings, it is unable to dispense justice to the people in time and at affordable cost.

While these major organs that run our hard-earned democracy ...
  


Crossing the federal line
16.12.16 - H K Dua

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is by no way a casual person. Hence, it would be a mistake to take his recent statements, suggesting a debate on simultaneous elections to Parliament and state assemblies, casually. His proposal could be part of a larger design to extend his party’s — or his personal sway — over the entire country. He could be pursuing the thought that simultaneous Parliament and assembly polls would be to the BJP’s advantage, ensconced as it is at the centre and in most northern and western states without depending on another party. Also, opposition parties are in disarray and unlikely to join hands against the government.

Interestingly, Narendra Modi did some thinking aloud on simultaneous polls at an all-party meeting chaired by the speaker, and later at the BJP’s national executive some months ago. He then raked up the theme again just a few days before demonetisation. It is ...
  



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