Thursday, October 3, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi



Handling paddy marketing operations

The marketing season of paddy is in full swing. Due to mechanical harnessing and transportation of paddy to the markets, the peak marketing season, which used to prolong for 60-70 days, has been reduced to 35-40 days in spite of increased production and marketable surplus because of high yielding varieties of wheat and paddy released every year.

Thus the quantum of business transacted everyday has increased. Consequently, problems of unloading, space, cleaning, sale, prices weighing, payment and lifting the purchased stocks from the market arise every year and cause resentment among farmers, which leads to unrest and dharnas. At times it is very difficult to satisfy the farmers in a mob and to make them understand the reality of the situation.

This year the production cost of paddy has gone up due to the rise in the prices of fertilisers, diesel etc and drought. Therefore, this season the resentment and unrest among the farmers is much more as they do not get the right MSP and a friendly treatment in the markets.

The state governments, marketing boards and market committees will have to make concerted efforts to ensure fair prices, timely procurement, accurate weighment and prompt payment to farmers. The lifting of purchased stocks should be on a day-to-day basis to make space for fresh arrivals in the markets.

Besides, sufficient lighting arrangements, adequate drinking water, toilets and cleanliness are the basic amenities required to be made. Better marketing arrangements and requisite facilities in the markets will give relief to the toiling peasants, who become helpless while getting remuneration returns of their hard-earned marketable surplus.



Kurukshetra in neglect

The efforts of the Haryana Government to develop Kurukshetra as a heritage city and a hub of tourism are largely marred by lack of cleanliness and maintenance of the premises of places of tourist attraction. Pathways at the Brahmsarover and Ch. Devi Lal Park, not to speak of places of lesser importance, are littered with cattle dung and filth giving obnoxious looks and smell.

Almost all verandahs at the Brahmasarover are occupied by wandering people, whose credentials are not verified, and rendered most unhygienic to walk. A large portion of the Devi Lal Park gets waterlogged. Unless the entry of cattle to these places is strictly barred and proper cleanliness is ensured, a visit to these places cannot arouse reverence and charm.

D.P. KARKARA, Kurukshetra

Hospital engineering

The PGI, Chandigarh, was the birthplace of hospital engineering in South-East Asia. The PGI’s department was acknowledged a model for developing countries. The mobile workshop of the PGI with spares used to go to H.P., Haryana and Punjab hospitals for repair work.

The Director, GMCH, and the new DHS of UT are requested to implement the “shared hospital engineering services” model covering the Sector 16 hospital, GMHC, government and private clinics. To start with, medical waste disposal can be taken up. Any investment will pay back in three years, will save 30 per cent of maintenance budgets and reduce the idle period of equipment by 70per cent. The proposals have been pending with the Chandigarh Administration since 1998.

The PHSC can follow the model for Punjab hospitals. Hospitals are an industry and policy makers have to acknowledge the role of qualified hospital engineers, biomedical, clinical and medical architecture.

The new Institute of Research in Health at Panjab Unviersity can play a unifying role in developing new shared hospital health service models..

J.C. MEHTA, Chandigarh

Nepali influx

This refers to the news item “After 13 children, pregnant again” (Sept 25). As soon as Nepali children attain the age of 15 or so, they are sent across the border to seek livelihood in India. As a result they have flooded the entire northern belt. They take up all sorts of menial jobs.

They live in big groups, each hiring a single discarded room with practically no water and lavatory facilities. Early in the morning they are an eyesore to those taking walk. The sight of public water taps and roadsides is so embarrassing and disgusting that many have stopped going out early in the morning.

They often perpetrate crimes — quite often thefts, sometimes mauling and even murders — for the sake of cash and jewellery. Their victims are often aged people living alone due to the posting of their children at far-off places. Some have managed to get ration cards and have even enrolled themselves as voters.

Indians also go abroad to earn money. They also undertake menial jobs. However, their entry into foreign countries is governed by certain rules, regulations and conditions. Sadly, these restrictions vis-a-vis Nepalis are lacking. Hence the influx.

D.K. AGGARWALA, Hoshiarpur

Ludhiana’s past

Mr M.S. Cheema’s article “Behind the silver screen” in Ludhiana Tribune made a reference to old cinema houses in Ludhiana. I remember there were three cinema houses in 1947 when we left Ludhiana. The name Batta theater comes to mind which has not been mentioned in the article.

I am a relative of the family which owned Naulakha cinema as well as Naulakha Bagh, which Mr Cheema has mentioned in his article “Gardens of yore, parks of today”. Mr Cheema is doing an excellent work highlighting the history of Ludhiana. We lived in Gulchaman Gali and left in 1947 never to go back. I am now settled in England with my family and wait for the day when normalcy returns and I may be able to visit my lovely Ludhiana. I will remain for ever in your debt if you could print some photographs of Gulchaman Gali, Iqbal Ganj, Naulakha Bagh and the surrounding areas as they look today.

MOHAMMED J. NAWID, by e-mail

Package for UTI

A Rs 14,561 crore package just to save UTI culprits. What is SEBI doing? No change after what Harsad Mehta did. Different ways of robbing the common man. Vehicle owners are openly robbed by the National highways authority of India. No different from highway robbers. Is there any limit?

ON SHARMA, Panchkula


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