Uttar Pradesh Minister for Haj and Minority Welfare Haji Mohammed Yaqoob's announcement of a reward of Rs.51 crore and gold equal to the weight of anyone who beheads the Danish cartoonist who lampooned Prophet Muhammed (Feb. 18) is outrageous. This is the land of Gandhi and the Buddha. Peaceful non-violent protest is what is in keeping with our heritage. By the way, from where does he propose to get the cash and gold?

V. Venkitakrishnan,
Chennai

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The announcement is shocking. The cartoon row cannot be addressed by taking such barbaric actions.

Mithun John,
Chennai

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What is worse is the Home Secretary's statement that making an announcement on someone living in a distant country is not an offence. Such inflammatory speeches grossly mislead the Muslim youth. The judiciary should take suo motu notice of such inciting utterances.

V. Shujaath Ahmed,
Chennai

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The Danish cartoons are horrendously blasphemous. But the Minister has uttered something that is a crime under the Indian Penal Code read with the Criminal Procedure Code. I wonder why the powers that be in Delhi are observing silence. The Home Secretary's defence that no crime is committed is puerile and he has to do his elementary law all over again.

V.R. Lakshminarayanan,
Chennai

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The Minister has committed a criminal offence by inciting a section of Indians. Swift action against him will deter similar offences in future.

K. Venkataraman,
Mumbai

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Mr. Yaqoob's statement is a threat to communal harmony and peace. I appeal to all Muslims not to be misled. The Minister should be questioned to determine whether there are other forces behind the announcement. People like him and Iran's President do the most harm to the image of Islam and Muslims.

Shamsul Arifin,
New Delhi

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The announcement is detestable. We are humans, and we should acquire some humanitarian values.

V. Visweswara Rao,
Vizianagaram, A.P.

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The violent protests in Hyderabad against the cartoons are unfortunate. No doubt Muslims all over the world have been hurt. But what purpose is served by pelting innocent people with stones?

That the protesters indulged in such violence after prayers is worse. It is the duty of every Muslim to resist such dangerous tendencies.

Mohammed Kaja,
Hyderabad

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What role did the people of Hyderabad play in the publication of the cartoons? The protesters could have taken out a peaceful rally instead of going on the rampage in the old city.

Abhishek Singh Chauhan,
Hyderabad

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Some elements are taking advantage of the situation by whipping up communal passions. All religions teach tolerance and forbearance and there is a way to protest.

A. Sarah,
Hyderabad

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The protesters must remember that India had nothing to do with the cartoons. It makes no sense to indulge in mindless violence here.

P.V.S.R Sarma,
Machilipatnam, A.P.

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Why should public property in Hyderabad be destroyed in retaliation for blasphemy in Europe?

Any act degrading another person or religion should be condemned in a peaceful way.

M.M. Kale,
Kakinada, A.P.

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No one has a right to offend the sentiments of people belonging to other religions. This is a point Muslims too will do well to remember.

R. Ramaseshaiah,
Hyderabad