Musclemen and polls

Sir, — The editorial, "Elections and musclemen" (Feb. 26) is timely. The D.P. Yadav episode has shown that the Bharatiya Janata Party is willing to do anything for power. All political parties speak against criminalisation of politics but they continue to take into their fold all and sundry for petty gains. This practice should be stopped.

K. Rajeev, Kottayam, Kerala

Sir, — The BJP's claim of being a "party with a difference" has taken a severe beating. In the past too, the party nurtured men such as Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raja Bhaiyya, who had been charged under the Prevention of Terrorism Act by the Mayawati Government in Uttar Pradesh.

Karthyck A.R., Chennai

Sir, — The BJP's dumping of Mr. Yadav following the furore over his entry has to be appreciated, whatever its motives.

V. Padmanabhan, Bangalore

Sir, — The de-induction of Mr.Yadav shows that the BJP is sensitive to well-meaning criticism. Though Mr. Yadav was earlier in parties such as the Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party, this is perhaps the first time a party has de-inducted a potential winner.

Surya Karri, Austin, Texas

Sir, — By showing Mr. Yadav the door just four days after taking him in, sensing that his presence would harm its image, the BJP has proved that it does not have a set ideology. This is the party that was responsible for amending the Representation of the People Act, making it difficult for persons with criminal antecedents, if any, to contest elections.

Prerna Katiyar, New Delhi

Sir, — Political morality, principles, ideologies, long-cherished values, etc., are thrown out of the window, come elections. Sadly, political parties of all hues are vying with one another to rope in leaders with alleged criminal background to win elections in any way. As pointed out in the editorial, good governance will be a myth as long as these leaders are in the forefront.

N.K. Vijayan, Kizhakkambalam, Kerala

Sir, — Selecting candidates through a foolproof and people-centred process is needed.

M. Somasekhar Prasad, Badvel, A.P.