Bidar case


First, with reference to the action taken by the police against the school in Bidar, Karnataka, there was no reason for the police to dramatise the issue as there was no violence either within or outside the campus (Editorial, “Punish the police” and “More Bidar school students questioned”, both February 5).

Second, this being India, a school crawling with police personnel might affect its credibility and reputation in the public eye. Third, it is a mystery how the right-wing activist came to know about the school programme, unless he himself is a parent. If so, why could he have not protested in the first instance with the school authorities?

Equally, it is injudicious on the part of the school authorities to have thought of involving young children to enact something as serious a national issue as the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. Police personnel in India need exposure and training about the freedom of speech and personal liberty.

E.S. Chandrasekaran,


Every time when we conclude that we have seen the nadir of intolerance by an authoritarian regime, we are proved wrong. The police “excesses” in Bidar are an example of the absolute mockery and abuse of the law. The name of the school might have caused the authorities to have a closer look at its activities. The infringement on the right of expression and speech has breached new lows in Karnataka, but with a certain party in power, it does not spring a surprise.

G.B. Sivanandam,


The framing of sedition charges against a parent and teacher is disproportionate application of a law that was meant to remove threats against public order. The action of the police fails on two counts: reasonableness of restriction and proportionate action. The schoolchildren concerned might fear to express their thoughts and opinions freely in the future as a result of the trauma they are sure to have undergone. Their ability to think critically could be limited due to this. The case is also symptomatic of a larger issue. There seems to be a gradual erosion of secular and democratic values from institutions that should be democratic and secular.

Nirmal A.P.,

Thaliyil, Kannur, Kerala

The play only reflected contemporary reality — ongoing protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act across the country. It is a laughable contention that it posed a threat to the security of the state; it is irrelevant to use a colonial-era law against primary schoolchildren enacting a play on current affairs. The police have disrupted the lives of the children, their parents and teachers.


Chakdaha, Nadia, West Bengal

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Printable version | Feb 20, 2020 1:42:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/bidar-case/article30745327.ece

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