Saturday, May 4, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi



Vested interests may thwart Operation Cleanup

IT is welcome relief to discover that a CM such as Capt Amarinder Singh can be businesslike and dare to go hammer and tongs against officials who were being patronised by the previous government and whose higher echelons were hand in glove with those charged. It remains to be seen if the Captain is able to sustain the cleansing of the stables and these cases don’t remain just an exercise in public relations. Unless, carried to their logical conclusion of bringing justice to the guilty and bringing the remaining guilty to justice, such bold measures would remain mere paper exercises.

Also, the present CM has taken on the most powerful and mighty in the state. And hence there is always the lurking fear that vested interests may attempt to thwart Capt Singh’s operation clean up by putting stumbling blocks. However, not only should the Capt remain undaunted, but his resolve should be reinforced by the present success.

I agree with the esteemed writer that Vice-Chancellors and Chairmen of State Public Service Commissions should function free of political interference and should, therefore, be appointed on the basis of their professional competence and should be men of learning and scholarship.

The appointing authority for the State Public Service Commission should be a selection board which should be constituted of the Chairman of the Union Public Service Commission, one member from the same body, two apolitical respected personalities from the field of academics, art, culture, the print or visual media.


The Vice-Chancellors should be appointed by a Selection Board to be headed by the Chairman of the UGC (University Grants Commission), a member of the same body and two apolitical members from the field of academics, art, culture, print and or visual media. There is no doubt, whatsoever, that corruption breeds and thrives because politicians have a major share in the booty. They are likely to oppose any move in the direction of reforming the selection process for these important positions.

V.B.N. RAM, New Delhi.

Moral education: Transparency and accountability have suffered in every sphere of the country. The product of education system in this country is rotten to the core. Who is to be blamed for the mess in education? Teachers? Yes, of course.

The IAS/IPS (formerly ICS) and other administrators are the products of this very education system, that is, indeed spineless! The bureaucrats act to release the whims and moods of their political masters. The trait of fearlessness seems to be missing in the modern-day administrators.

They endorse what their masters desire. I doubt, whether moral education introduced in some of our schools and colleges in the country will imbibe the quality of fearlessness. Because the man learns morals right from the mother’s womb and goes on learning them in the family and society after birth. How should one establish and join this family and society part of the morals with the part that is learnt in the schools and colleges?

One must not forget that corruption in the PPSC is also one of the offshoots of corruption in the country’s politics. Scamsters in politics often go scot-free without receiving exemplary punishment. The nation will have to take hard decision to restore the people’s faith that has received a grave jolt because of the mess in the PPSC.

IQBAL SINGH, Bijhari (Hamirpur)

Vicious circle: The infamous Ravi Sidhu saga of corruption exposes the vicious cycle that has been working in the politicised bureaucratic structure of the country. With complete lack of transparency and accountability in the highest administrative set-up, merit takes a back seat, thereby opening the flood-gates of corruption, inefficiency and lack of social justice. Once considered the “steel frame” the civil service today, with its blurred vision and a statusquoist attitude, fails to inspire any confidence among the people.

Cherishing the undeserved and undesirable hopes of “bits & crumbs” from their political bosses, bureaucrats have ceased to be straightforward, impartial and just in their functioning. They don’t mind executing the whims and fancies of their political masters even if it means twisting, breaking or redefining the rules. And this is not limited to just one state or region, nor even to a particular field of public administration. If one tried to analyse the incidents of corruption and moral turpitude in Punjab and the genocide, called communal riots, in Gujarat or the feudal rivalry in Bihar, one is sure to come to a common conclusion that such a moral degeneration and loss of human values is caused by the opportunistic politicians and spineless bureaucrats forming a nexus which has recently been joined by criminals also.

But no bursts of public unrest or anger or the hue and cry of the affected victims can ever reform the system or the individuals running it. It at all there is any hope of cleansing the politico-administrative setup, it lies in a healthy system of education and an equally effective judiciary. We can weed out the dead wood, if people are really awakened through education and if our law-enforcing agencies and the judicial system are not bogged down in the marshes of delay, adjournments, appeals and counter-appeals.



Anguish & apology

Apropos the letter “Of killings and apologies” by MPS Bajaj, I want to tell the writer that Mrs Sonia Gandhi was clever enough to use the word “anguish”. She had not apologised at all. Had she been sincere at heart, she should have used the word “apology”, that too at Harmandar Sahib. Secondly, I want to correct Mr Bajaj that there were no riots in 1984. Sikhs were caught unawares which resulted in unprecedented butchery and planned massacre. Had there been riots, the picture would have been quite different.

S.S. BAINS, Chandigarh

Holidaying together

The summer holiday schedules for universities, colleges and schools do not synchronise. The net result being that the family concept of vacationing together is lost. Will the authorities do something in this regard?



I have often gone through obituary/rasam pagri/bhog/antam ardas advertisements in your paper. I miss in them the date of birth (to know the age) and the cause of death (natural, illness, accident or murder).

These facts make a reader conscious of the facts, and unconsciously prepare him to be careful for that eventuality. A road accident prepares him to drive carefully and a disease will enable him to adhere to preventiveness, treatment, change in lifestyle etc. I appeal to all to provide this information.

P.L. GARG, Bathinda

High-beam driving

Apropos the item “Ensure use of helmets” (April 23), the high court is doing a commendable job, but why is it not touching a major traffic hazard — driving with high beam on? Glare of such lights leads to major accidents.


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