Letters to the Editor — July 6, 2021

Afghan’s descent

Afghanistan seems to be, ominously, on the brink of a dreadful civil war (Page 1, “Taliban capture several districts in Afghanistan”, July 5). What is appalling is that in the ensuing power struggle between the Afghan security forces and the Taliban, the extremist, war-happy Taliban seems to be gaining an upper hand. With the embers of militancy and extremism flaring up, the beleaguered Afghan government is naturally feeling let down by the United States and its allies. Apparently, the remedy of the U.S. and its allies for peace in Afghanistan is worse than the malady.

Unfortunately for India, which has contributed immensely in rebuilding the war-torn nation, the rise of the anti-India Taliban bodes ill, especially when China has been making inroads into Afghanistan.

However, the biggest lesson the Afghan imbroglio has is for the U.S. Be it its interference in Vietnam, Iraq or now Afghanistan, it seems to have received a bloody nose by playing the global policeman. It should now realise that maintaining global peace is the prerogative of the UN.

Nalini Vijayaraghavan,


The Rafale deal

With the war of words between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress getting uglier by the day over an investigation into the Rafale deal, citizens are not getting any wiser in the absence of any official response from the Government on the issue. The details of why the French agency is now reasonably satisfied about the need for a judicial investigation into the deal cannot be brushed aside. The Indian government can no longer be disdainful about allegations of wrong-doing. The Opposition, and the Congress in particular, has been vociferous in its demand to have a joint parliamentary committee to probe various questionable aspects of the deal including pricing; and this cannot be ignored (Page 1, “Cong. calls for probe into Rafale deal”, July 5).

S.K. Choudhury,


There is still a lingering suspicion that the deal was not entirely free from the taint of kickbacks or the underhand payment of ‘hidden commission’. Sometimes ‘influence peddlers’, ‘money launderers’ and ‘middlemen’ masquerade as ‘facilitators’ of the sale of defence equipment. And the Government, if it is really committed to ensuring transparency and accountability, cannot run away. There is a need for a credible investigation. Opacity still surrounds the role a leading Indian business group played and the gain it made using its political clout despite possessing no funds and technical know-how for the ‘joint venture’.

If France can hold an investigation into an inter-governmental agreement, there is no reason why India should not follow suit. To say that information related to defence (and the defence deal) was classified is a weak argument.

G. David Milton,

Maruthancode, Tamil Nadu

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