This refers to the article “A year after Mumbai: the global battle of ideas” (Nov. 23). The 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks were expected to mark a turning point in the global struggle against terrorism. The outrage expressed by people, the media and political leaders was profound and it raised the hope that November 26 would mark the end of terrorism. But the legal proceedings against the terror suspects are still in the pre-trial stage in Pakistan.
If Islamabad’s claim that it is facing a threat from its periphery is true, its response to the terror attacks would have been intense. But most of the time, it has been denying the involvement of its men in the attack. India and Pakistan should work together if terrorism is to be uprooted from their soil. There is a need for a radical change in the peace dialogue.
S.S. Vasan, Chennai
The attack on Mumbai was sad and ignominious. Have we learnt our lessons or are we still sitting ducks? The answer is ‘yes’ and ‘no.’ ‘No’ because considerable work has been done by way of boosting security, improving reaction time, and coordinating intelligence network. ‘Yes,’ because the threat of a terror attack still looms large.
This is because we have not been able to instil fear in the minds of terrorists and their handlers. We would have done that had we, soon after the Kargil war, Parliament attack or, at least 26/11, carried out precision strikes on the terrorist camps across the border; had we eliminated hardcore terrorists; and had we punished Ajmal ‘Kasab’ within weeks of 26/11 rather than making him sit on our heads.
Aniket Singh, Mohali
Nothing can be more shameful than the fact that even after one year of the Mumbai carnage, ‘Kasab,’ the lone terrorist caught in action, is yet to be sentenced for his crime. On the contrary, we are spending money on his security and health.
Had our criminal justice system been more speedy and prompt, we would not have ‘Kasabs’ striking terror in India.
S.P. Sharma, Mumbai
There may be many opinions on the right and wrong of the moves made by India to counter cross-border terror, post-26/11. The truth is: the danger of an attack on any major city, place of worship, other strategic points such as power plants, railway stations and airports today is real. Eliminating terrorist activities from the Pakistani soil is next to impossible.
V.K. Nair, Thrissur
With the first anniversary of 26/11 approaching, many believe that India should have retaliated against Pakistan first and then started talking to it. Pakistan and the ISI were most certainly involved in the heinous crime perpetrated from their soil. But a very important question to which we are yet to find an answer is: who in India gave support to the perpetrators of 26/11? Why are we not asking this as forcefully as we should?
Motupalli S. Prasad, Chennai
Gory happenings such as the 26/11 attacks should not be relived. In fact, the trauma that the people of Mumbai experienced must be erased from their minds forever and a sense of security and peace instilled in them. Instead, we find newspapers and the electronic media full of footage of the dastardly attacks — people running in panic, bodies strewn all over, etc. This is certainly not pleasant for those who would like to forget the tragedy. People celebrate festivals such as Diwali, Christmas and Eid because of the good things and the message that accompany them. Observing the anniversary of a terror attack that killed, maimed and orphaned many is in poor taste.
M.V. Nahusharaj, Bangalore
The report on the Italian police account of how Pakistani operatives activated a U.S.-based Voice-over-Internet Protocol which was used by handlers in Pakistan to give orders to the terrorists during the Mumbai attacks throws light on how dangerous modern technology can be. The growth of science was meant for the welfare and wellbeing of humanity. But, unfortunately, it is increasingly misused to inflict misery. Where did we go wrong? The answer lies within our society — in the family, the social set-up and the culture we develop.
C. Petson Peter, Kochi
The Mumbai attacks case is taking a curious turn following the reports of the alleged involvement of Pakistan-born U.S. national David Headley and the disclosure of the Italian police. Where did the attack originate? We have a right to know. The government should find out where the plan was hatched.
B.S. Raghavendra Rao, Bangalore
One wonders what the rationale behind the extensive media coverage to Headley is. It is not as though a terrorist plot against India has been exposed by the foreign intelligence agencies for the first time. If anything, it is a blot on our intelligence. Headley travelled widely in India before 26/11, creating sleeper cells. He did not even bother to cover his tracks. If only our intelligence agencies had been more alert, the 26/11 carnage could have been averted.
Subramanian Venkatraman, Mumbai