Goswami’s actions a blot on IAS

THE editorial “Path to infamy: Goswami brings disgrace to his service” (July 2) rightly pointed out the decay and decadence that has of late set in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS). The involvement of the key accused former Patna District Magistrate Gautum Goswami in Bihar’s multi-crore flood relief scam has brought disgrace to the IAS.

The editorial has simultaneously brought to the fore the obnoxious nexus between the politicians, the bureaucrats and the contractors facilitating the swindling of crores of rupees, thereby fattening their own coffers and depriving the marooned and the homeless of the much-needed assistance during their hour of crisis.

Investigation is on, but the million-dollar question is how swiftly and impartially will the State Vigilance Bureau conduct the probe and whether it would be able to get the amount recovered from the defaulters. In any case, exemplary punishment should be given to all those found involved in the scam. This alone would act as a deterrent.


Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor, neatly hand-written or typed in double space, should not exceed the 150-word limit. These can be sent by post to the Letters Editor, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160030.

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— Editor-in-Chief



It was indeed a bold editorial in public interest. There can be many more Gautam Goswamis indulging in corrupt practices in the bureaucracy and in other important professions. However, the entire bureaucracy as an institution cannot be dubbed as corrupt. Being the steel frame of the government, the bureaucracy is indispensable as its expertise of maintaining law and order and contributing significantly towards development of the state is just inherent in this institution. The need is to reform it.

Dr Manmohan Singh’s government has already kick-started the process of reforms. The establishment of a permanent Centre for Good Governance may go a long way in bringing about the desired results. People should be encouraged to offer their views and suggestions to tackle the evil of corruption in its varied forms and manifestations.

The investigation and trial of corruption cases should be completed within a specific timeframe of say, one year. Equally important is the need to fix accountability on both the politicians and the officials for their acts of omission and commission. Severe punishment should be given to those found guilty for corruption, nepotism and misuse of power for personal gain.

MANJIT SINGH, Chandigarh

Against natural justice

IN his article “Power has limits: Punjab human rights body has jumped the fault-line” (July 4), Justice S. S. Sodhi has rightly analysed the functioning of some of its members based upon the recent judgment of the Punjab and Haryana High Court and another ruling. I fully endorse the view that the member flouted all norms …and showed scant regard for principles of law, to oblige the politicians.

Three cases of an illegal construction violating the basic rights were registered by the PSHRC as bona fide ones. This was confirmed in the news reports, “Wall of contention refuses to budge” (The Tribune, Jan 1, 2002) and “MC mute witness to bylaw violations” (The Tribune, Aug 3, 2002). The cases, with many hearings, took a sudden turn when the cases were entrusted to the Double Bench. Its orders were stereotyped with one-sided version, which is against the principles of natural justice. The action was obviously aimed at weakening the petitioner’s morale.

During November, 2003, the petitioner, despite best attempts, failed to obtain PSHRC case records from the MC Chief. As human rights bodies are a complement to the institutions of judiciary, the members are required to act impartially.



Free power

The Amarinder Singh government has promised free power to small farmers holding less than five acres of land from August 15 despite objections by the Prime Minister and the Planning Commission. Haryana is also playing the same game by waiving the farmers’ loans worth Rs 1,600 crore.

The Punjab Chief Minister should know that the Parkash Singh Badal government had lost the elections even though it promised free power to the farmers. The present government chose to give this concession to marginal farmers, but it will have to bear a loss of Rs 300 crore per annum.

BANSI RAM, Chakhajipur (Hoshiarpur)


In addition to free power to small farmers, the Punjab government also plans to abolish octroi. If octroi can be abolished for all sections, why deny power to all categories of farmers? Free power to farmers, rich or poor, will be in the interest of justice, equity and fairplay.

M.P.S. RANDHAWA, Dhapai (Kapurthala)

Grotesque ruling

This refers to the editorial “Imrana under siege” (July 1). Instead of punishing Ali Mohammad for raping his daughter-in-law, Imrana, the Charthawal Panchayat passed a fatwa that her marriage stood annulled and she should regard her husband, Noor Ilahi, as her son. What a pity!

Many Islamic scholars have different opinions on the issue. I have read Soorah Al-Nisa of the holy Quran. Verse 23 is very clear: “And marry not those women whom your fathers married…” Ali Mohammad raped Imrana, not married her. She cannot treat Noor Ilahi as her son.

Verse 24 says: “Forbidden to you are… the wives of your sons that are from your loins…” Yet Ali Mohammad ravished his son’s wife. Rape cannot be a ground for annulling marriage. Ali Mohammad should be severely punished under the law.



The victims of rape should be suitably compensated. Justice should be prompt. The wife of a rapist should have the right to leave or divorce such a husband. Social organisations should help arrange the marriage  of rape victims.

CHAMAN SINGLA, Bhucho (Bathinda)

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