Tuesday, June 18, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi



Why no to power generation tax in Himachal?

The editorial “ ‘No’ to generation tax” (June 14) highlighting and endorsing Union Power Minister Suresh Prabhu’s stand on the subject is dismaying, to say the least.

It must be appreciated that Himachalis at large have made tremendous sacrifices vis-a-vis the gigantic hydro-electric projects located in the state. Thousands of families were uprooted, braving untold misery in the process. Many hapless families are still painfully struggling — wandering from pillar to post — for proper resettlement. Incredibly large chunks of fertile land, which sustained the state’s economy to a considerable extent, have been permanently submerged under water.

It was fondly hoped that exploitation of the state’s vast hydel potential would help generate so much revenue that the financially — sick state would no longer reel under a resource crunch. However, the outright rejection of the state’s case for imposition of hydel generation tax by Mr Prabhu comes as a damper.

Why the Centre has opted to go in for the mindless and unjust course is anybody’s guess. Is it so because the state’s case has not been put across and advocated in the language the powers-that-be seem to understand — the language of force, one is curious to know?

TARA CHAND, Ambota (Una)


Paradigm shift in women’s status

As a general perception, women are considered a weaker sex in every walk of life. For ages now, the Indian society has not reconciled to the factum of liberation of women.

However, the last century has seen a paradigm shift in the status of women from being a weaker sex to equal, if not better, sex. The so-called “the female of the species” has tried to break free from the shackles imposed upon them by the male-dominated society. They have carved a niche for themselves in almost every perceptible sphere of life without compromising their responsibilities. Being a wife and a mother are the superlative honours that God has bestowed upon a woman and mere thought of denigrating any of these pious privileges is unthinkable for womanhood. There is absolutely no truth in apprehending that a working woman proves to be an inferior wife or mother. On the contrary, it can be safely submitted that she is better equipped and more exposed to the people and to the latest goings-on in the world, which, when imparted to the child, can prove to be invaluable for his development, both as a successful adult and a responsible citizen. A working wife is an asset both to the husband as well as to society. She not only alleviates the financial burden from the husband’s shoulders but also proves to be a catalyst in the development of the nation.

An open society that embraces the fact of working women is the global order of the day. Any notion of working women being second best to their counterparts should be thrown in the bin, since it is the weaker sex that is proving stronger as the world progresses in the 21st century.

RAJIV BHALLA, Chandigarh

Checking corruption

In his article “Corruption and derailed development” (June 5), Professor Sucha Singh Gill has drawn attention of the Government, the media and the public to understand that corruption is in-built in our system and requires a sustained compaign to give it a natural death.

I firmly believe that by removing corruption, at least, two per cent rate of growth in Gross Domestic Product is possible without additional allocation of resources in all the sectors of the economy. There is an urgent need for zero tolerance against corruption — a resolution of our Prime Minister . It requires good governance at all levels which can create heaven for honest and hell for the corrupt and criminals.

To put the Indian economy in general and Punjab economy in particular on the rails, there is need for vision with action to second generation economic reforms which also requires administrative and political reforms.

The Centre and the States need to get their act together in the business of governing instead of defending the indefensible. To be better off, we need to embrace the new economic policy of liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation (LPG) rather than fight it.

There is an urgent need for infusion of fresh confidence and sense of hope by building the image of a healthy financial system in India. Otherwise, the chances of getting out of the fiscal crisis appear to be dim. To reach the Everest of human development in India, we need to treat human resource development as the infrastructural activity to be undertaken as an essential service with necessary and sufficient physical, financial and human resources.

To my mind, data on socio- economic factors, very high coefficient of distrust, insensitivity of the people for development issues, free rider problem and behavioural pollution are the major weaknesses of the Indian economy.

The spiritually guided materialism strategy flowing from Bhagvad Gita, sloka no.22 of Chapter 9 needs to be adopted in India as a development strategy to get rid of the socio-economic problems including corruption. It is the need of the hour to clearly understand the difference between ‘Needonomics’ and ‘Greedonomics’ for attacking corruption and blackmoney— the twin sisters eating into the socio- economic fabric of our society.

Dr. M.M.GOEL, Sr. Reader in Economics, Kurukshetra University, Kurukshetra

Why this beeline?

Apropos of Mr P.C. Dogra’s article “Punjab Vigilance Bureau is a toothless tiger” (June 8), the writer has failed to explain why there is a beeline for postings in the Vigilance Bureau by all ranks of police officers, if it was a toothless tiger. Is it not for money? Or the money changes its colour when it comes to Vigilance Bureau officers?

RASHPAL SINGH DOGRA, Banga (Nawan Shahr)Top

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