Letters to the Editor — January 24, 2022

Extinguishing history

‘Obliteration of a memory’ is the phrase that comes to one’s mind after reading the report, “Amar Jawan Jyoti now merged with National War Memorial flame, says Government” (January 22). Applying the same strange logic, why don’t we ‘merge’ all the statues of political leaders too? Already, the obliteration of history is a work in progress. One wonders what the next casualty will be. The Independence Day address from a Mughal-era fort?

R. Thomas Paul,


Surely, both flames could have co-existed as the stand-alone icons of our glorious past, signifying the grit and the valour of our veer jawans across different time frames. For many veterans like me, and even to our millennials, the Amar Jawan Jyoti memorial, with an eternal flame, has always held deep memories of of our past, colonial included. To subsume articles of immense value is quite unheard of in the annals of Indian history. Arguably, the Government could have also elicited our views.

G. Ramasubramanyam,

Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh

Many travellers to the national capital make it a point to visit the solemn place to derive inspiration and to absorb national pride. The jyoti gave significance, an identity, a purpose and a charm to the iconic place and has, so far, not posed any hindrance to any segment of society. The Government could have left it untouched.

V. Johan Dhanakumar,


Belittling, distorting, erasing history and carving new narratives to suit its political and religious ideology are tools the ruling party is employing to polarise the electorate for narrow political gains. The exuberance shown in appointing a committee to ‘examine’ ancient history, observing a Partition Horrors Remembrance Day, the Central Vista Project, renaming of public monuments, cities, towns, educational institutions and even dropping Mahatma Gandhi’s favourite hymn from this year’s Beating Retreat ceremony are all examples of a well-crafted, despicable plan with a quest for a new history to drive a future politics. It is time for the people of this great country to see through these political ploys.

Dr. Biju C. Mathew,


Not in the hymn book

I am shocked and surprised that the Government has decided to drop the Mahatma’s favourite hymn, ‘Abide with me’, from this year’s Beating Retreat ceremony, and played every year since 1950. Who is the brain behind this unwarranted move? Will it not touch the nation to the quick? It is a stark fact that the younger generation today is oblivious of the yeoman services rendered by Gandhiji. Now, to drop his favourite hymn will only make this even worse.

Mani Nataraajan,

Coonoor, The Nilgiris

Subhas Bhowmick

Subhas Bhowmick was famed as a ‘bulldozer’ in the football maidan of his generation. He shook the opponent’s defence with his dribbling skills. Remarkable too was his switchover to coaching. His contributions will always be linked to the rise of Indian football.

Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee,

Faridabad, Haryana

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Printable version | May 20, 2022 2:14:06 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/letters/article38315307.ece