Monday, October 6, 2003, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


Most teachers unable to teach Hindi

LAKHS of students studying in colleges and universities are opting for Hindi as their medium of instruction and examination every year in Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Uttaranchal, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Jharkhand and other states, especially in subjects like economics, commerce, political science and other social sciences. As the University Grants Commission is celebrating 2002-2003 as its golden jubilee year, I would like to bring to your attention a few incontrovertible facts.

Unfortunately, 95 per cent of lecturers, readers and professors working in colleges and universities are ignorant of the standard Hindi technical terminologies in these subjects. They are not competent enough to teach their subjects in Hindi medium. I have given the benefit of doubt to the remaining 5 per cent.

Not a single college or university level textbook in economics, commerce, etc., has been published by any private publisher or the State Hindi Granth Academy using standard and approved Hindi technical terminology in these states in the last ten years. So is the state of question papers set in Hindi in various examinations in these states.



The UGC spends crores of rupees every year on in-service training of college teachers in the country but no one has ever paid any attention to these aspects of teaching. Huge funds are going down the drain.

How can an apex institution like the UGC or any state government can ever maintain the standards of teaching, examination and research in the universities, the task for which it was mandated?


Pervez’s slip is showing

GENERAL Pervez Musharraf slipped in the UN General Assembly — out of sheer bravado to boast about the well-known Pakistani war gameplan — being carried out surreptitiously by a lethal combination of terror, drugs and dons with local Trojan horses in Kashmir. Apparently, the Pakistani Army has been having marvellous time ever since their last defeat in 1971. They have no time or will to fight, being so busy in ruling their country, teaching the art of democracy to their countrymen and reframing the Constitution! They lost heavily even in safe Kargil heights and had to seek safe passage without retrieving their dead!

Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee has been quite right in rejecting the ceasefire offer ostensibly to stem the present heavy attrition of its terrorist outfits in Kashmir. Pakistan has really no locus standi in Kashmir after the state lawfully acceded to India. Problems, if any, are local and have been overcome to a large extent as evident from free and fair elections in the Valley. The remaining differences would also be overcome. Whether the time barred and defunct 50-year-old resolution has been contravened or not is between India and the UN. Pakistan is certainly not the conscience-keeper of the world forum.

Cross-border terrorism and its local support has to be dismantled ruthlessly as the US and Israel have been doing. It is our war and must be fought alone. We should welcome those who want to join us. Big nations like India do not succumb to terrorism or nuclear blackmailing as our Prime Minister has reiterated. Why have any truck or bus and establish diplomatic ties with a neighbour who cannot even be a good enemy?

Air-Cmde RAGHUBIR SINGH (retd), Pune


One rank, one pension

The issue of one rank-one pension (OROP) for ex-servicemen has come to the fore once again. Champions of the cause are generally those who held senior positions in the Army prior to their retirement. The rationale behind the OROP is undisputed. However, the manner is which it is being demanded amounts to begging.

In a dynamic state, progress and prosperity are ongoing processes. Respective generations of employees including those in the defence avail themselves of the “pluses” and “minuses” of services in their times. Uniformed men of yesteryears are segment of the overall civil society. Pleading with the government with a single track demand, that too frequently, shows the ex-servicemen fraternity in a poor light before the people.

The genesis of the problem lies in the terms and conditions of recruitment which forestall uniformed men to complete the requisite 33 years of service to earn full pension. Additionally, payscales and pensions are promotion and rank-based. Consequent to the peculiar rank structure, most men and officers in the Army do not reach the level of payscales equivalent to their counterparts in the civil side. These reasons attribute to earning comparatively far too less pension by those in uniform. These reasons are beyond the control of the affected individuals and warrant no explanation.

The only solution to the problem is either by lateral move of service personnel to civil paramilitary forces at the appropriate time to enable them to complete the mandatory 33 years of service or by granting higher pension on completion of their currently stipulated period of engagement.

The anomaly ought to be projected firmly to the government by those at the helm of affairs in three services. Since the government is evasive, sacrifices on their part is called for. But do we have such brand of Generals? There is a general impression that only meek personalities attain senior positions in the defence hierarchy. What a pity!

Lt-Col BACHITTAR SINGH (retd), SAS Nagar

In the shadow of gun

Every other day, we see on the front-page of the newspapers pictures of women wailing over the loss of their dear ones in the militant attacks in Kashmir. This has become such a routine news that we just read the number of dead persons and turn to the next page. This seems to be all that we owe to these people.

Our politicians are busy with their game of numbers in Parliament and their vague strategies on Pakistan. They are dilly-dallying on taking a firm decision to root out militancy from the Kashmir Valley. Meanwhile, attacks are continuing and the people continue to live in the shadow of guns. Their losses are irreparable and cannot be compensated.

Who is going to account for these tragic deaths each day. Any answers with the government?


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