Issue :   
October 2017 Edition of Power Politics is updated.  Happy Diwali to all our subscribers and Distributors       October 2017 Edition of Power Politics is updated.   Happy Diwali to all our subscribers and Distributors       
Issue:Sep' 2017


A fine diagnosis

Your cover story on the network of illegal funding to Islamist terrorism in the state of Jammu and Kashmir offers a fine diagnosis of the disease that has continued to torment the Indian Republic since the forties . It is shocking that the successive dispensations in New Delhi have allowed Islamist terrorism to penetrate into the Valley and flourish even after seven decades of the whole of Jammu and Kashmir's accession to the Union of India. The Union of India must take steps to set the matter right .
It must exercise its jurisdiction over the state and protect its citizens in the Valley from terrorism sponsored by certain elements in Islamabad. Our National Intelligence Agency must thoroughly probe into the matter and bring to book all elements involved in the illegal funding of terrorism .
I will take this opportunity also to applaud your takes on the verdicts the Supreme Court of India has delivered on the issues of talaq and the right to privacy. The verdicts are commendable indeed. You have rightly observed that Islam prohibits injustice to any genders, including female. Yet the reactionary forces in India have been perpetuating the dark personal laws of triple talaq that allow men to commit the crime of divorcing their wives just by uttering the word 'talaq' thrice over any mode of communication. You have rightly said India's is a democracy . The Constitution of India guarantees every citizen the right to privacy. The Government cannot act in the way that would take away our right to privacy.

Sundaram Pillai

When black money turned white

In his address to the nation on November 8 last, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that his policy of demonetization was aimed at bringing back black money, ending corruption, suffocating terrorist funding and tackling counterfeit currency. He said, "The... notes hoarded by anti-national and anti-social elements will become just worthless pieces of paper." His premise seemed to be that a sizeable part of the Rs 15.44 lakh crore of the two high-value ( Rs 1000 and Rs 500) banknotes would become invalid in the hands of the holders. They would not be tendered back into the banking system due to fear of punitive government action. The windfall gains made from the scrapped currency notes that would not be deposited in banks would be deployed for social welfare schemes and infrastructure projects. But according to the Reserve Bank of India's annual report, all but 1.4 per cent of the 1,000 rupee note that was banned last year has returned to the banking system. Does it not prove that the demonetization was nothing but an exercise of money laundering where the black money was converted with the help of the government into white? The Prime Minister owes an explanation to the Nation on this. Will he oblige ? Finance Minister Arum Jaitely has recently claimed that the "confiscation of money" had not been an objective. His Ministry has said the government "had expected all the SBNs [specified bank notes] to come back to the banking system to become effectively usable currency." This does not jell . Was not there a RBI circular setting a Rs 5,000 limit on deposits of withdrawn notes unless done under the government's amnesty scheme?

M Thapa

Need for caution

Both China and Pakistan continue to pose threat to India . China's support to its client state Pakistan is intact and its intention has never been clear. India must contain Pakistan directly and China indirectly. China's military and economic prowess cannot be glossed over. India must deal with China diplomatically, politically, multilaterally and economically. New Delhi must canvass against China's imperialist expansionist designs in the region.
In the recent Doklam case the Indian Army did well to deploy itself in Bhutan against China . Of course, the 2007 India-Bhutan Friendship Treaty just states that the two countries "shall cooperate closely with each other on issues relating to their national interests." Also, Bhutan also did not explicitly request any military assistance from India during the stand-off . But India has legitimate security and strategic interests in Bhutan. New Delhi can never let China undermine them.
New Delhi must not rest complacent. The Doklam friction may return . China's road construction activities in the Sikkim sector near the point of India's connection with its north-eastern region have to be constantly watched. Bhutan needs to shun its ambiguity on India's moral obligation to defend its territorial integrity . Like India , Bhutan did not attend China's recent Belt and Road Forum in Beijing. But Thimpu maintained a curious silence on Doklam issue .

Cauvery Mukherjee

Save Larung Gar

Right to one's religion is one of the basis human rights in the modern world. It has been under threat in China since long. Today the world must come together to save Larung Gar on the eastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau. It is in danger . It was founded in 1980 by the late Lama Jigme Phuntsok. It has attracted tens of thousands of monks and nuns over the years. Larung Gar has long operated as an independent centre of learning .
Since Jigme Phuntsok's death in 2004 it has been administered by a group of revered khenpos. The khenpos regularly visited campuses in Europe and the United States to spread their teachings . These khenpos have had a broad following at home. They have attracted thousands of lay practitioners and monastics, both Tibetans and [Han] Chinese. It is now being taken over by the Communist authorities.

Krishna Raj
Bodh Gaya