Keep PSCs free from interference

This has reference to the editorial “Open defiance” (Jan 3). I may point out that the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and the state Public Service Commissions (PSCs) are not under the control of any government. These are independent institutions duly protected by the Constitution. How can a state Chief Minister control this constitutional body and issue directions to it?

I have never heard that the Election Commission has issued any direction to the UPSC for stopping their work or withholding any result during the Lok Sabha elections. We should all try to keep the status of the Public Service Commissions fully intact, impartial and free from any political interference.

TARLOCHAN SINGH, MP Chairman, National Commission for Minorities, Government of India, New Delhi




Limits of superstition

Here comes the story of a gory incident at Belamaranahalli in Kolar district, Karnataka, recently. The body of an 80-year-old leprosy patient, Sadappa, buried in a common burial ground, was exhumed by superstitious villagers and thrown open for vultures to feed on it.

The villagers believe that there will be no rain if a leprosy patient is laid to rest there. The incident came to the fore when Sadappa’s family found his grave dug open. A team from the Leprosy Society found the skull and bones laying scattered nearby a plantation. Inquiries revealed that the heinous act was committed by the villagers, though they feigned ignorance when local authorities questioned them. Sadappa’s wife Pillamma recovered the skull and buried it once again in the graveyard.

This incident speaks volumes about the ignorance and superstitious briefs of villagers. Awareness campaigns in the villages can wean the people away from superstitions and help develop a progressive outlook.

Dr A.R.K. PILLAI, President, Indian Leprosy Foundation, Jogeshwari (East), Mumbai

Admission policy

It is heartening to learn that instead of over 50 tests currently conducted by professional institutes on their own, there will only be five major countrywide examinations from this year onwards.

As far as entrance examinations for admission to and degree courses in engineering are concerned, they are conducted on the basis of CBSE syllabus, meant for the qualifying examinations of +1 and +2 classes. As almost all the state boards of school education follow the CBSE syllabus, why shouldn’t there be only one major countrywide examination for admission to all medical and engineering colleges in the country?

At present, candidates have to spend thousands of rupees on the purchase of prospectus and application forms, if they intend to appear in these examinations, conducted by the various states for admission to their medical and engineering colleges.

This will save the candidates and their parents from the huge financial burden. I would be happy if the new admission policy clears the confusion and lightens the burden on the aspirants.

IQBAL SINGH, Bijhari (Hamirpur)

Rule of law

It is wrong on the part of political parties like the BJP to communalise the issue of the arrest of the Kanchi Shankaracharya. Clearly, it is a case of an individual and not an institution. Obviously, reports of sleaze, sex and greed of the Kanchi Mutt add to public anxiety. But stories connected with other religious places have also been coming to light from time to time.

The Prime Minister’s communication advising Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa to extend due respect to the Kanchi seer during the trial and her assurance to him in this regard is apt and timely. Political parties should keep off such matters as exploiting religious sentiments of people for political gains is bad politics. The rule of law should prevail at any cost.

Lt-Col BACHITTAR SINGH (retd), Mohali

Judicial integrity

The judiciary will have to maintain highest standards of integrity and rectitude. The two appalling incidents involving moral turpitude and misconduct by a former Calcutta High Court judge and a civil judge in Gujarat, which have been severely censured by the Supreme Court, are just an iota of the professional misconduct prevailing in the judiciary.

Apparently, there is a nexus between the judges and the lawyers. Like some doctors who prefer slow recovery of their patients for monetary gain, the lawyers keep on prolonging the cases to charge substantive fee from hapless clients.

The setting up of a National Judicial Commission has not found favour with the government. In the absence of an apex judicial monitoring body, the alternative suggested, i.e., the constitution of a Collegium, headed by the Supreme Court Chief Justice, and a similar set up in the High Courts are expected to meet the dire need for ensuring healthy working of the judiciary.

Brig H.S. CHANDEL (retd), Malanger (HP)


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