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Substantial allegation

Sir — Perhaps Barbara Taylor Bradford is not very familiar with the way things are done in this country. She deemed it right to go ahead and sue Sahara TV for “breach of copyright” because it has allegedly used her novel, A Woman of Substance, and adapted it into a mega serial that had all the correct ingredients of a blockbuster (“Karishma: plot behind the story”, May 10). Unfortunately for her, no matter what our television fraternity has to say about their creativity and originality, plagiarism today is the rule rather than the exception. Examples abound in our television and film industries where tunes and story plots are lifted unscrupulously. There is nothing close to even an acknowledgement to the original makers and producers who sometimes show the temerity to take offence. Bradford’s case could not have escaped the same treatment. All things said and done, one hopes that more and more people like Bradford come up and fight this gross malpractice which our entertainment industry has so specialized in.

Yours faithfully,
Manjira Majumdar, Calcutta


Just hitting back

Sir — Repeated warnings from the United States of America president, George W. Bush, are hardly of any consequence to the terrorists. After the September 11 attacks, he has stated a number of times that the US will hound out the killers and they will be taught “the meaning of American justice”. He did not spare us this time either, after the horrific attacks at the expatriate housing compound in Riyadh (“America bleeds in Laden cradle”, May 14). The Americans are perhaps not familiar with the adage, “As you sow, so shall you reap”. The US’s attempts to wrongfully get hold of things not its own resulted in the catastrophe of 9/11. Now its policies of trying to extend its dominance over Iraq has probably resulted in this suicide bombing. This will continue and it can be easily predicted that the Americans and the British will find it difficult to feel that any haven is safe for them.

Yours faithfully,
Jang Bahadur Singh, Jamshedpur


Sir — Last week’s suicide bombing at Riyadh has shaken the US administration, its armed forces and its bewildered people. All the bragging about the death and decimation of the terrorist forces, that the American president has been confidently dishing out to his audiences in the small towns across the US, has been shattered by the ghastly scenes of destruction in the “foreigners enclave” in an Arab city. Some of the most prominent of his own countrymen had pressed him repeatedly to restrain the energy he has spent on the war on terror and not to open so many other dangerous fronts. He refused to listen to them, apparently under tremendous pressure from the Israeli lobby, and in fear of being routed out of office in the next elections.

By chasing the US secretary of state, Colin Powell, from Riyadh to Russia, the terrorists have signalled the extent of their reach. The Americans ought to ask their president why he is so intent on mortgaging their future and their unchallenged freedom all around the world, to his interests and arrogance.

Instead of addressing the institutionalized injustices of the existing world order, Bush, under the tutelage of his advisors, seems hell-bent on creating an even more unjust world order. Can he get his people to sheepishly go along with his plans of a brutal version of the old imperialist world order by giving them half-truths all the time' Bush’s media blitz will never be able to cope with disasters like Riyadh and its wider implications. And one fervently hopes that by whatever little morality or the freedom of thought and expression there is among the media, Bush’s real objectives behind his reckless political misadventures will be exposed.

Yours faithfully,
Ghulam Muhammed, Mumbai


Sir — The repercussions of the “Iraqi freedom” exercise have only begun to show themselves. Iraq might have been silenced after the war that the US had waged against it last month but radicals among the Islamic community may decide to make sure that the coalition pays the price. It is hilarious when George Bush says in all seriousness that “the war on terrorism continues”. Have things improved after Bush claimed confidently that Osama bin Laden and all those responsible for terrorism shall be brought to book' He seems a little confused whether to hold bin Laden or Saddam Hussein responsible. The Americans now are in a hurry to say that the al Qaida was involved in the bombing in Riyadh. Antagonistic attitudes towards the US have been becoming so strong that this particular attack on the Americans has unfortunately found silent support from many in the developing nations.

Yours faithfully,
Bijoy Ranjan Dey, Tinsukia


Sir — The US is now confronted with awkward questions which the war on Iraq has brought forth. The chain of terrorist attacks and the counter-terrorism tactics are simply exposing the lack of credibility of the investigations that have been promised to the citizens. It appears that the promises made to “smoke out” the offenders and bring them to justice have only been made to cover up the failures of American leaders. In the process, only innocent citizens will continue to come into the line of fire and will be offered mindless solace.

Yours faithfully,
Sushant Chatterjee, Calcutta


Sir — There seems to be no end to terrorism. Terrorists are waiting to seize any opportunity to strike out against the West. Suicide bombing is not new, the frequency with which it is being repeated now is cause for concern. Deterring this will be quite a feat and doing it immediately will remain an arduous task.

Yours faithfully,
S Ram, Calcutta


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