Saturday, February 14, 2015

Titular politics

Deccan Chronicle | S.K. Sinha | February 13, 2015
I would venture to suggest another name for a Bharat Ratna. Like Lata Mangeshkar, Bhupen Hazarika had a most captivating voice and was one of the top singers of our time. One of the causes of alienation of people from the Northeast has been that they are not treated well in the rest of India. I recall that with great difficulty we had managed to get a Bharat Ratna for Gopinath Bordoloi, the great statesman but for whose stand in 1946 Assam may have become part of East Pakistan, and later Bangladesh. The award helped in getting the people of Assam back to the national mainstream. Today there have been several cases of discrimination and violence against students from the Northeast in our national capital and in other cities. It is reported that the authorities at the Taj Mahal insisted that a batch of girl students from Handique Girls College, Guwahati, buy entry tickets at rates prescribed for foreigners. They had identity cards issued by their college with “Guwahati, Assam”, printed on it. The ignorant staff maintained that since India was not written on their card they would have to be treated as foreigners.
 
A Bharat Ratna for Bhupen Hazarika will provide a balm to the hurt feelings of the Assamese. National awards recognise the contribution of individuals and provide an incentive to others to emulate and strive. It is an important component of good governance.Click here to read the full story