Monday, July 08, 2002
A LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Foreign-born to rule India?
Though there are many a slip between the cup and the lips, BJP’s hard-line leader, L.K. Advani is poised for the number one spot in the next shake-up of the national kaleidoscope. It would be quite a coincidence that both largest national parties, Congress as well as BJP will then be led by leaders, both born outside independent India’s territories. Whatever may be their commitment to India, the people of India have to right to discuss if their extra-territorial birth will be in anyway effecting and compromising the big issues that face our nation. If , because of his birth in Sindh province, which is totally cut off not only from the boundaries of modern India, but neither plays or nor should play any high-priority role in the governance of the country, Advani should hold any obsessive agenda that could harm the peace and security prospects of future India, then the people have to be fairly warned in advance. Similarly, if Sonia’s Gandhi’s Italian birth, at some stage colours her policy or value judgments that could not be in line with the general consensus of the people of India, there should be some avenue where such eventualities could be publicly thrashed out. Gone are the days, when Kings and Generals born in foreign countries can, by the quirk of marriage or lack of public awareness and empowerment, could be manipulated by foreign powers to effectively rule countries by proxy. In this republican age of people’s rights to choose their own leaders through effective democratic processes, and hold them accountable and tuned to popular sentiments and wishes, any chance or probability of abnormal situations, specially developing with a longer term pace, which may rob them of the full and unfettered exercise of their democratic rights, should be widely debated and an informed consensus evolved for all time to come to guide the future generations.
GHULAM MUHAMMED, P.O.BOX: 16685, BANDRA WEST, MUMBAI – 400 050