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Saturday, December 25, 1999
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Cleansing public life

THE survey conducted by The Tribune brings out the brazen plunder of Haryana’s mineral wealth by the corrupt politicians. It should be an eyeopener for the people of Haryana. How the self-appointed leaders of poor masses are looting the hidden wealth of Haryana depriving the poor people of their share in it by way of developmental activities in the backward Haryana!

Sometime ago there was another news item in your paper about the dues of about Rs 30 lakh payable by the said politician towards wages of poor labourers. It is very strange that such violators of public laws are eulogised by offering them ministerial posts even without having been elected MLAs. It is for the political parties, who claim to give clean and corruption-free administration to the State, to ensure that all those persons against whom there are any such cases of breach of public law are not given ticket for contesting election to the State Vidhan Sabha or the Lok Sabha.

Second, if any party presents any such corrupt politician as its nominee for election, the voters should ensure that such violators of public laws are kept out of the Assembly/Lok Sabha.


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Reservation Bill

Both the Houses have passed the Reservation Bill in order to give benefit to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. This Bill will be effective from January 25, 2000, for a further 10 years (2010). No doubt it was a good scheme at the time of its introduction and Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes are enjoying this facility for the last 50 years. Some families have progressed a lot. But the lot of many other families has not changed at all.

The reservation policy has totally made the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes dependent on it. For example, as a blind man depends at his stick, continuous grants from the government have become a hurdle in their progress as an independent. It would be better if Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes come forward and throw back the begger-like concession and meet all competitions boldly.


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Working hours

The wealth-intoxicated intellectuals running the State and the Centre do not distinguish between hot summer and bleak winter while effecting changes in the working hours in the offices. During summer, days are long, nights are small and in winter vice-versa. How do the rulers expect there would be efficiency in the offices during bleak winters and small days?

Britishers who ruled the country for a very long time were not fools who introduced six working days in a week. This system continued till Giani Zail Singh created five working days in a week in Punjab and ultimately the Centre also adopted the pattern. There were no fans or coolers and heaters in offices and the employees still worked.

As a result of five working days the politicians have made the employees holiday-minded and workload is piling up everywhere. Efficiency with extra one hour in the office has gone down. Individuals feel boredom and while away time in offices.

In view of holidays declared by Punjab, Haryana and UT Chandigarh, beside Sundays and Saturdays i.e. 104 days there are approximately 36 public holidays, thus nearly 140 off in a year, i.e. one-third of a year. All individuals are allowed 15/8 days casual leave in a year beside earned leave. By prefixing and suffixing an individual enjoys 155 days’ holidays. What efficiency can the States and the Centre expect?

The judiciary observes one-month summer vacations and 15 days winter vacations calculating public holidays, casual leave and extra appox. 35 days the total comes to 190 days — more than half of the year. No wonder lakhs of cases are pending.


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Paid holiday

I fully agree with Mr Tarun Dass (Dec 14) when he suggests to send 30 pc of staff on paid holiday for two years. It is not only an interesting idea, it is the most useful and practical idea and must be implemented. To start with we can start in the public sector and then after two years, I am sure, the government itself will adopt in government Sector also.

Today’s India is full of self-employment opportunities and many of such holidayers will be absorbed very nicely and will not return to their jobs, thus relieving the sector from a big financial instability.

If southern states of India are not cash strapped even then these states should also adopt this formula to get full productivity from their staff as well as save millions of rupees, which can be used for many useful purposes.

My experience is that in public sector almost 30 pc staff is always absent or on leave. Still work goes on. Why not fully understand that 30 pc lesser staff is doing everything every day.

My compliments to the CII for making such a useful suggestion for the nation.


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Questionable decision

Notwithstanding the political wisdom or otherwise of the dissolution of the Haryana Assembly, or even the possible verdict of the forthcoming elections, one feels perturbed at the time and manner in which the state Assemblies are dissolved and elections held at the whims of the ruling party/alliance (“Chautala’s gamble”, editorial, Dec 16). A decision prompted more by vested electoral considerations than any constitutional compulsions can hardly be called a democratic exercise.

The Haryana Chief Minister’s decision to go in for elections 17 months ahead of schedule is an attempt to use the bickerings and dissidence in the rival camp to his advantage. Concession sops to different sections of society on the eve of the polls constitute an attempt to twist the verdict in one’s own favour than to seriously address the problems of the people.

Haryana, with its lead in the dubious political games, has once again raised a question for debate at the national level: Should a party/ alliance in power in a state be empowered to dissolve the Assembly at any time (most opportune for itself) and thus extend its rule without waiting for the scheduled time by when its credibility may in all likelihood be eroded? The so-called unanimous decision of the Cabinet is no more than the dictates of the high command of the party concerned.

Shouldn’t such an issue be debated on the floor of the House? In the absence of a single party rule, coalitions need to be restrained from twisting the system to their own advantage. But the unfortunate part of our political system is that the people, by and large are swayed by pre-poll promises and rhetoric than preferring good governance and credible performance on a regular basis.


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In the news item “HP Assembly adopts resolution on Rohtang Tunnel” the expanded form of RITES has been wrongly quoted as “Railway Institute of Techno Economic Survey” whereas the correct expanded form is ‘Rail India Technical & Economic Services Limited’.

New Delhi


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