An open letter to Sonia Gandhi
“You leave us alone, don’t divide our people”
By Anwar Manippady
It is not possible for you to know the pulse of Indians as we belong to a great heritage and culture. You are taking advantage of our people’s innocence and goodness. You have been trying to shatter our country’s peace and destroy the great heritage passed down to us from generations. It’s time you restrain yourself from committing such crimes against Indians.
You are worsening the plight of minorities of this country – India, to which you do not belong. It is not possible for you to know the pulse of Indians as we belong to a great heritage and culture. You are taking advantage of our people’s innocence and goodness. You have been trying to shatter our country’s peace and destroy the great heritage passed down to us from generations. It’s time you restrain yourself from committing such crimes against Indians.
You have been leading a National Party not because of the merits you have, but because the members of your party are gullible, ignorant and are not able to unite together! The vote bank policy practiced by you and your Congress party is further deteriorating the relationship between the majorities and minorities of this country. Here are some instances. Sometime ago, while Sania Mirza was donning the Indian colours and bringing laurels to the country, your support to a group of clergy in their fatwa against Sania was uncalled for. You said that it was a personal matter, and their sentiments should not be hurt and it should be respected. There is no such fatwa in this country and instead of quelling this then and there; your support set a very bad precedent. The appeasement through the reservation policy based on caste, creed and religion is further breaking the society by division and groupism. The same reservation policy could be implemented on the basis of the economic backwardness whereby the branding of the people on these lines can be avoided. Of course you couldn’t have created a vote bank there! Recently when some fanatic hooligans attacked novelist Tasleema Nasreen, you and your Party did not utter a word to condemn the incident. Your protégé Y.Samuel Rajashekar Reddy did not get the hooligans booked under proper criminal charges. They had the courage to threaten the author of beheading her and the Andhra Pradesh Government watched this in silence instead of punishing the culprits. Your head of the Government came out with the statement before the investigation ended with regard to the fanatic terrorists involved in the UK bomb blast, saying that ‘One felt sorry for the relatives of such terrorists’. Why do you do this? Is it not trying to please the ignorant minorities for sake of vote bank? Madam, Please stop these appeasements. It is not going to help the minorities. Its detrimental to the minorities, detrimental to the country. These appeasements develop a false strength with the minorities, which in turn will tend to undo the goodness their religion preaches. All these above actions will not build our country India into a modern, developed and a powerful nation.
It also reminds me of the novel Lajja by Smt. Tasleema Nazreen, wherein a Hindu family dedicated to the country Bangladesh was subjected to discrimination, brutality and even rape. And finally that family had to run away from their motherland – Bangladesh. Your appeasement will make the minorities of this country, homeless too, for no fault of theirs or the majorities.
Like the old saying ‘From the frying pan to the fire’; your new venture, destroying the Ram Sethu will be another worst crime against the country. The whole world knows that Ram Sethu has a religious connotation and we Indians are emotionally attached to it. The dredging and opening of Ram Sethu will have far reaching consequences in India. Moreover; 1) It is not beneficial in any way: a) Any ship weighing 40,000 tons and above cannot sail through this pass as most of the ships carry much more weight at present. b) It is exorbitantly costly to make this pass. c) The time gained by passing through this pass instead of going around Srilanka is two hours. d) The ships passing through this channel requires pilotage and pilotage charges which will be heavy. For example the channel length of this pass is about 56 Km and the pilotage charges will be around Rs one lakh per Km. e) Dredging the pass and removing the sand will be a permanent feature and it’s not going to be cost effective. On the whole, it will not be economically viable for the shipping companies or beneficial for the country. 2) How detrimental it is: a) It will hurt sentiments of millions of Indians. b) Priceless Thorium deposits will be washed away by breaking the wall. c) More than ten lakh fishermen will lose their jobs. d) If the pass becomes an International route, it is a threat to our internal security. e) It will destroy the fragile coral islands, as the sediment from the turbulent tides will enter from the Bay of Bengal. f) It might reactivate the sub sea heat flows. g) Ram Sethu is a natural tsunami protection wall. It proved during last tsunami, as Kerala was not affected. This fact has a scientific bearing. Let us take a look at the opinions we have from different quarters of the society and various scientists and thinkers: a) NASA and Google Earth photographs and other information b) Department of Earth Sciences, Government of India. March 2007. c) Sir.A.R. Mudaliar Report 1956. All the above evidences show that Ram Sethu is not a naturally-developed formation, but it’s a man-made bund. The meaning of the word “Sethu” in all the Indian languages is “Man-made bund”. Sir A.R. Mudaliar Committee Report very clearly says that breaking of Ram Sethu is not feasible as it would entail definite navigational hazard and shifting sandbanks in this area presents a far more formidable problem both at the stage of construction and during maintenance level.
Professor Tad S. Murthy , A Tsunami expert says Ram Sethu is needed to change the mouth of the alignment of the Bay of Bengal. This will help in avoiding destruction of Kerala if there’s a recurrence of another tsunami.
Besides ISRO and NASA there are other evidences which shows the existence of Ram Sethu. They are as follows:
Arya Chakravarti coins of Jaffna of 13th century and Parantaka Chola a copper plate of 10th century indicate that king Aparajithavarman went to Setuthirtha. That is Rama’s temple at the Sethu.
Evidence from Sangam literature: In a book titled Ramanatha-puram, a district gazetteer published in 1972 refers to Ram Sethu also as Adam’s Bridge or Nala Setu.
Malabar Bowen Map of 1747 drawn by Netherlands shows Ramar Coil (Rama Temple).
Maps drawn by Joseph Parks, an Australian Botanical explorer (1788) shows Ramar Bridge. (map in Saraswathi Mahal Lib., Thanjavur).
Islamic Expansion and western view of South Asia, 7th to 12th century (Al- Biruni’s record) by a legendry Arab explorer and geographer proves the presence of Ram Sethu.
Madras Presidency Admission Reports of 1903 and a travelogue of 1744 call the bridge of Rama : It really joined Ceylon to India until 1480, until a breach was made through rocks during a storm. A subsequent storm enlarged this breach and thus the foot traffic ceased. A book by Alexander Hamilton, 1744 New account of the East Indies: gives an exact and copious description of the situation, wherein page 338 describes his visit to ‘Zeloan’ (Alternative spelling for Ceylon) by walking on the bridge. Authentic digital images of Sri Ram Sethu from NASA image exchange: Photographs taken by NASA astronauts, Russian cosmonauts, Gemini Spacecraft in 1966, 8 NASA Space Shuttle Missions 1983 to 1994. International Space Station expedition 2002-2005, all conclude Ancient Bridge = Sri Ram Sethu and appreciate the Sethu in following words: Sri Ram Sethu causeway must have been a major engineering feat for its thin trace is still so clearly visible on the present days satellite images. It has resisted the relentless erosion of the sea for millions of years and it attests to the great engineering skills of the ancient Indian people. It is the earliest and largest carbon-fibre reinforced civil engineering structure known to man and should be protected as a world heritage site. Justice K.T. Thomas and our former President Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam observations say that the Sethu is a heritage site and has a religious leaning. All the above scientific derivations, historical evidences and observations of scientists and learned persons and the feeling of millions of people of all communities if set aside and the Ram Sethu is destroyed, our country will go through insurmountable spiritual and economic loss. When Metro Rail tracks in Delhi can be replanned because of the worry that it might cause vibration to the natural heritage the Kutub Minar; the highways gets diverted when monuments like dargahs, temples and churches comes in the way, then why can’t to have absolute peace, and to avoid chaotic situations above all in the interest of this great country the breaking of Ram Sethu be dropped. On the other hand the development of Ram Sethu as a heritage place, a pilgrim center and as a tourist spot should be envisaged which will not only bring huge revenue to the exchequer but peace to people of India too.
(The writer is Chairman, Karnataka State Govt. Minorities Development Corporation.)