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For the Record

July 26, 1999

For the record
Politics & Policy
Give sanity a change

*** "I would feel different with someone else’s heart . . . that’s a good enough reason not to have a heart transplant, even if it saved my life . . . I don’t want to die, but I would rather die than have the transplant and have someone else’s heart. I would rather die with 15 years of my own heart."

(‘M’, a dying 15-year old schoolgirl, whose emotional plea to ‘allow her to die’ was denied by a Judge in Newcastle, England. She was forced to have a heart transplant against her will and was recovering)

*** "Globally there is enough food to feed the world, but to our shame we live in a world where food rots and people starve."

(Jacques Diouf, director general of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, presenting the 1998 annual report of World Food Programme which says that number of people living in hunger worldwide has risen by 8 million to 830 million in three years—1996-1999)

*** "The brutal tactics they employ— including summary executions, ‘disappearances’, torture and rape— have provoked widespread alienation from India."

(Human Rights Watch report ‘Behind the Conflict in Kashmir’ on atrocities committed by Indian forces in occupied Kashmir)

*** "I do not want to be one of the four million Pakistanis living abroad. I want to be in Pakistan and fight from there."

(Cricket hero-turned-politician, Imran Khan, predicting a powerful backlash to prime minister Nawaz Sharif for mishandling the Kashmir conflict)

*** "Powerful politicians must not be allowed to harass and intimidate the press."

(Press watchdog, the Southeast Asian Press Alliance’s complaint to Thai prime minister over barging of armed guards belonging to deputy prime minister in the offices of Daily Thai Post)

*** "That may be so, but according to my books you’re dead."

(Lal Bihari, a farmer recounting the reply of a revenue official in India. It took Lal, who was listed as deceased by his unscrupulous relatives, eighteen years to prove that he is alive to get his land back)

*** "We don’t drink or smoke, so we’ve got to do something."

(Singer Donny Osmond replying to a question on why he and his sister, singer Marie Osmond, both Mormons have five and seven children each)

*** "As clergy we must seek out people where they are."

(Swedish pastor, Louise Linder, who has set up a rent-a-priest agency which comprise six members of the clergy)

*** "The president of the United States has arguably the most difficult job on this planet and we don’t want that individual to be worried about pinching pennies."

(Tom Davis, Republican member of the US House of Representatives as the House voted to increase the salary of the President Bill Clinton’s successor from $ 200,000 to $ 400,000 per annum. The measure was passed by 334-82 votes)

*** "They [Kennedy family] had it all— beauty, intelligence, money, culture and charm. The only thing they lacked was the most important— the luck to enjoy it."

(Spanish Daily El Mundo, reacting to the news of disappearance of John F. Kennedy Jr., his wife and her sister in a plane crash in Massachusetts)

*** "They could be charged with attempted murder and unlawful detention if they used guns to intimidate the editorial staff."

(Thai premier, Chaun Leekpai urging the Daily Thai Post to file a criminal complaint to help police initiate investigations that an aide to a deputy premier led armed man in the Newspaper office to intimidate the staff)

*** "I am very happy to be out of my second prison . . . I can now do the things that I always wanted to do."

(Nelson Mandella, humorously referring to his five-year spell as South Africa’s first democratically elected president)

*** "We try to inspire the children with some imaginative projects— not only to ensure their good behaviour but to raise their achievements."

(Graham Newman, deputy headmaster of Prestwich school, Manchester which reward model students to come in late for classes)

*** "Newsweek should be ranamed Newsweak."

(Thai foreign minister, Surin Pitsuwan, infuriated over Weekly’s story that Thailand’s only economic advantages over its neighbours were sex and golf)

Edited by Syed M. Aslam