Wednesday, August 30, 2000,
Chandigarh, India



Power of a criminal 

A FEROCIOUS forest brigand, a deadly dacoit and a cruel killer of man and elephants has been ruling the roost for the last so many years. By amassing crores of rupees in the nefarious smuggling of sandal wood and ivory, Veerappan has become a living Ravana.

He has been dictating terms to two otherwise powerful Chief Ministers, and the Central government has been a silent spectator.

The so-called powerful Prime Minister and Home Minister have been literally inactive and callous in dealing with a cancerous growth in society. This adversely reflects their administrative acumen.

The dacoit is being approached through a scribe who wears identical magnificent moustaches. While a known thespian is in the clutches of the dacoit, the two state governments and the Central government are watching the melodrama in sheer bewilderment.

It smacks of lawlessness and makes a glaring mockery of the administration. Is there no K.F. Rustamji or a K.P.S. Gill in the Indian Police Service now ?

Ferozepur Cantt


Selection of VCs

While offering his comments on the valuable suggestion put forth by Prof Bhim Singh Dahiya on the burning issue of appointing Vice-Chancellors, Mr Anil Bhatia in his letter (August 21) has come forward with many useful proposals. It is an undeniable fact that in Haryana the universities are being treated as mere “dustbins” where bureaucratic garbage is dumped after being declared useless for further continuation in government service.

Throughout their service-career these bureaucrats keep indulging in manipulations to ensure their career growth. They become a master in that skill. What to they know about the norms of higher education and about research methodology. They cannot distinguish between school administration and the functioning of universities. As a result, they degrade the seats of higher learning to the level of primary schools!

How can such persons command respect in the community of scholars and intellectuals?

This factor has never been taken into consideration in the appointment of Vice-Chancellors in Haryana and the prestigious posts have invariably (with a few exceptions) been kept reserved for the politically patronised bureaucrats.


For rain shelter on The Ridge

There used to be a rain shelter on The Ridge opposite Dr Parmar’s statue which would provide much-needed shelter to tourists, retirees, women and children during heavy rain in the rainy season and the winter months. It was a heritage building.

That old shelter was dismantled about four or five years back, when the public raised hue and cry. There was an assurance that after constructing a shopping complex, the roof will be provided above it, which will give similar and better shelter again. But now when the shopping complex has been completed, no roof has been provided above it, with the result that there is absolutely no shelter against rain on the The Ridge, which is visited by thousands of tourists, retirees and children everyday.


Why charges on demand drafts?

It is a common practice that the general public has to make payments to various government departments in the form of demand drafts as required by the rules of the offices concerned. These offices include the universities, education departments and boards, power supply boards, telephone and telecom offices and municipal offices.

The banks in turn charge a commission on the amount to be paid from the general public that includes students, unemployed applicants, consumers of electricity and telephone users. They bear the burden per force. This is quite unbecoming and unlikely for a government that claims to be working in the general interest of the public.

It should be made mandatory that all banks should come forward to offer this service free of charge. Each customer should pay the amount exactly payable to the government office. Banks may give a suitable name for such documents offered to the general public without any fee. This decision of the Reserve Bank of India would offer relief to the general public which otherwise has to bear the brunt of the expenses of the government.


HP flood relief fund

I keenly went through the first list of donors for the Himachal Pradesh flood relief fund published by The Tribune on August 17.

As expected, I found no names of Sukh Rams in the list. Is their money meant to rot in the unclaimed steel trunks only?

I would even suggest that The Tribune should refuse to accept any offer of donation if at all it comes from the likes of them. Let us not allow them to pollute the sacred list of noble donors.

Wg Cdr C. L. SEHGAL (retd)


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