The Nehru years
Nayanatara Sahgal's views on the Nehru era (“Witness to history”, Ziya Us Salam, October 31) are very much relevant to the present day. No political philosophy should be studied save in the context of its time. Jawaharlal Nehru did not groom his daughter Indira Gandhi. He developed and allowed all the democratic institutions to flourish. He used to attend the Parliament sessions to the maximum extent possible. His concept of Democratic Socialism, however, gave only 40 per cent positive results. But his illustrious daughter tried to damage the democratic institutions in India and groomed her sons to succeed her. The late Vijayalakshmi Pandit and her family always had strained relations with Indira Gandhi. Vijayalakshmi Pandit even canvassed for the Janata Party during 1977 Lok Sabha elections and even in 1980 elections.
Karavadi Raghava Rao
The article and the extract from the book Jawaharlal Nehru: Civilizing a Savage World by Nayantara Sahgal made poignant reading. The readers have got a rare insight into the personality of a great statesman and the architect of the modern India and his deep commitment to the nation till his last breath .Nayantara Sahgal has depicted Nehru as a great visionary and true internationalist. His decisions, based on pragmatism relevant to that period of history, cannot be termed unstatesmanship. It is pertinent to note that the author bears no ill will against Indira Gandhi nor has she opposed Rahul Gandhi's foray into politics. The book on Nehru will be keenly read by a wide spectrum of people as the author had an insider's view of her illustrious uncle.
This refers to Kalpana Sharma's article “Judges, judgments and women's rights” (October 31). The points raised by her, both with respect to live-in relationships and rape cases, are pertinent. Live-in relationships were rare in bygone days. There has been an appreciable increase in their number in recent years. Mostly, educated/employed men and women enter into such relationships for a variety of reasons. They enjoy living together, without becoming husband and wife, till there is perfect understanding between them and it gets marred when such understanding vanishes.
So, will it not be in the best interests of those seeking such relationship to enter into some sort of written agreement? If such a system comes into vogue, then assumptions and presumptions or arguments and counter-arguments will cease to be the basis for proper disposal of the cases which go to court when the relationship gets broken. The legitimate rights of both men and women will get protected.
This is with reference to K.Hariharan's article, “He's back” (October 24). The fan club of Rajnikanth has no boundaries. He has die-hard fans all over the world. In Japan, Hong Kong and Australia Rajni represents India as its film-world ambassador. From the days of “Apoorva Ragangal” to “Endhiran”, there has been no looking back for the superstar in the tinsel world. His style is his signature. Rajni should continue acting in films without throwing his hat in the political ring. This is what his legion of fans want from him.
The articles on Rajnikanth and his recent blockbuster “Endhiran” were quite interesting. Rajnikanth is a superstar in his own right and there is no gainsaying the fact that he has changed the image of a cinema hero with his approach on and off the field. But, any comparison of Rajnikanth with the legendary MGR is simply unacceptable not only to the avid fans of MGR, but, to objective cinema critics also. A whole generation of youth were inspired by the soul stirring songs of MGR that reverberated the cause of the poor and the downtrodden. Unfortunately, Rajnikanth has failed to provide films with a message for society over the years despite enjoying huge popularity. His recent film “Endhiran” is just a cacophony of sound and graphics with little to provide by way of substance for the masses.
J. Anantha Padmanabhan