IAS officer’s courage of conviction

This is regarding The Tribune’s news reports and the editorial on the peremptory transfer of Haryana’s IAS officer, Mr Ashok Khemka. He was transferred from the post of Director, Secondary Education, to an insignificant post of Officer on Special Duty (Rules) for not implementing the wrong orders of the Chief Minister’s Office. Mr Khemka showed his courage of conviction and uprightness. Such officers are rare in the bureaucracy where sycophancy and bending backwards for prize postings have become common these days.

In a developing country like India, where 30 per cent of its population lives below the poverty line, the bureaucracy is highly paid with perks, security of service and good pension. These facilities are provided to them so that they strive for the welfare of the people and not to serve their personal interests or those of their political masters.

LAL SINGH YADAV, Advocate, District Courts, Narnaul




In 1994, Mr Khemka was the SDM, Pehowa. I was the Medical Officer in the Government Hospital, Pehowa, then. He had a no nonsense attitude towards work. He made a commendable job during the annual Pehowa Mela. He declared the money allocated for the Mela as surplus and returned the balance of the sanctioned fund to the government.

The Congress, which is praising him for his uprightness today, had treated him shabbily when it was in power those days. As the SDM, Tohana, Mr Khemka had earned the Congress government’s wrath for being honest and sincere.

Dr MANOJ LAMBA, Lamba Diagnostic Centre, Kurukshetra

Will district tag help Mewat?

Apropos of your editorial on Mewat district (Sept 17), Mewat area in Haryana comprises five blocks of Gurgaon district and one block of Faridabad. It is the most backward area in the region. Its literacy rate in 1971 was 14.9 per cent, water is brackish, and 1.2 lakh acre ft. of run-off water from the Aravalis is drained into the Yamuna as waste every year.

In summer, it is very hot as it falls into the semi-arid zone. The local people, known as Meo’s, do not adopt family planning. As a result, their population has been rising at an alarming rate. The land holdings are very small. The eating habits of the Meo’s and their living standards are unhygienic owing to poverty. Will the district tag for Mewat help change the socio-economic profile of its people?

R.S. BAIDWAN, Former DFO (Aravali), Mohali


Exploiting Kashmir

When you hear General Musharraf saying over and over “Pakistan will not give up Kashmir”, it is very important to understand what he is up to. He is not interested in any kind of peace with India. Nor could he afford to force himself into another full-scale war with India.

The hard fact is that anti-India rhetoric has always been a key for survival for all the past rulers of Pakistan. This has helped them to grab and stay in power until one was forced out by the other. It is no secret that General Musharraf also forced himself into power in 1999 and his best bet to stay in power is to sound anti-India as much as he can and Kashmir is the only issue he could exploit. He tried other tricks in the past but didn’t work.

SUBHASH C. CHAUDHRY, Indianapolis (USA) 

Impartial piece

Mr Paranjoy Guha Thakurta has tried to be objective and impartial in his thoughtful article “Foreign experts — yes or no?” (Sept 27). Notwithstanding the government’s recent decision to disband all these committees in the Planning Commission, I congratulate the Left parties for taking a principled stand against the inclusion of foreign experts in this commission.


A role model

I am thankful to The Tribune for highlighting the achievement of Usha Ganguly through Aditi Tandon’s news-report, “Using theatre to voice her deepest concerns” (Sept 20). A lecturer in a college in Kolkata, where I was her student in late 1970’s, Usha Ganguly is a staunch feminist and a renewed playwright and theatre personality with innumerable coveted awards in her kitty.

Despite her fame and star-status, she remains a role model of dignity and modesty. I, for one, salute this exceptionally talented lady.


Mobile tower, please

To attract customers, mobile companies like Airtel, Reliance, BSNL, Spice and Hutch are offering many lucrative schemes. However, instead of their announcements and surveys, Airtel and BSNL have failed to install a mobile tower in Nagrota Surian, which, incidentally, is also a tourist centre.

Many people have purchased mobile sets but without the signal, they have become just show pieces. Airtel and BSNL authorities should install a mobile tower in Nagrota Surian immediately to help mobile users.


Son-mania must go

The editorial “Endangered daughters” brings on record the declining gender ratio in Punjab, a state boasting of highest per capita income of the country. The desire for having a male child has outgrown into a mania.

A girl is an idol of compassion, kindness, charity and self-control. The superstitious societal norms accepting the male dominion have created havoc, making the life of a woman vulnerable although it should be venerable.

The prospective parents think of the immense expenditure borne by them on marriage as well as dowry (which has become a part and parcel of the former) even before a daughter is born. Time has proved that a daughter is a sunshine in the lives of her parents as well as her in-laws.

SUMITI VASUDEVA, Lecturer, S. D. College, Ambala Cantonment

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