I am writing in response to the calls I received about what I meant by “disaffected Indian group” (‘Granger disappointed on the question of an apology for PNC excesses,’ SN, June 3). Did I mean that East Indians were disaffected with the PPP or with the PNC?
I did not mean any of that; in fact, those were not my words. My presentation at the meeting focused on the necessity for the PNC to expiate its sins of the 1980s—to do a gracious and humble thing: admit it made certain mistakes.
If it does not, should we not rightly assume it endorses every policy and practice of the party’s reign of terror? And if indeed silence is tantamount to acquiescence, then is it not natural for people to fear a return to those dark and dismal days? However, Mr Granger, whom I found to be affable and astute, and whom I deeply respect, was adamant in his belief that only the old have a problem with the past. In his thinking, it is the Old Man’s Albatross, of course. Our memory is the PNC’s enemy. It is banking on new blood. But not so fast. Memories of the PNC’s reign of terror cannot be so quickly and quietly obliterated. The Albatross is within the PNC—it needs to cleanse its soul first.
To those who are fond of comparing the PPP to the PNC, I ask this: Could they have criticized the PNC during its repressive rule? The fact that today they can publicly air their grievances—real or imaginary—against the PPP defeats their own argument.
To those who criticize Mike Persaud for hosting Mr Granger, I ask this: What is wrong with civil discourse and exchange of ideas? Do we not learn from each other?
Dolly Z Hassan