Reforms must to rejuvenate the system

Mohan Guruswamy’s article “Pitfalls of bureaucracy: Reform or perish” (Perspective, July 31) was thought provoking. No doubt, the I.K. Gujral government was the weakest, corrupt and ultra populist, but the other governments are no different. As for corruption and sloth, these are increasing day by day.

Reforms in the bureaucracy are necessary to check political interference and corruption. Clearly, without people’s movement, political will and an active media, little can be achieved. The media can expose the deficiencies and mobilise public opinion for genuine reforms.



The bureaucrats and the politicians are responsible for the malady. In almost all societies, values are transmitted through parents, grandparents, religion and the arts etc. With the break-up of the joint family system and working parents gradually taking their place, the transmission of values from the elders has ceased. Good teachers and schools which used to make students good citizens have been reduced to merely preparing students for the examination.  


In such a scenario, how can we expect men and women of rectitude and high integrity at the top? So before introducing any reform in the bureaucracy, we need to evolve a structure of core values which can be provided by changing the present system of education. The values of parents and teachers will help mould the character of children.

P.L. SETHI, Patiala


In the past 58 years, successive governments have done little to check corruption and political interference. As a result, with the exception of a few honest officers, most are busy in making money. In the process, the common man is the most sufferer.

During the British rule, when the condition of roads was not good, the District Magistrates and Superintendents of Police used to visit the districts and redress the grievances of the public. Now the people keep waiting for hours for a darshan of these officers! The government should ensure that people’s grievances are redressed on priority.


Poor research

I am happy to learn that the UGC is planning to access all Ph.D theses submitted in the universities through e-Ph D. Every university has its own journal with no copyright. The papers published in such journals are not qualitative and the material just a compendium.

In these journals, people published their papers only to fulfill the requirement of 3-5 articles in 5-8 years for their promotion under Career Advance Scheme as Reader/Professor. Consequently, these articles have no academic worth. Further, these journals are for internal circulation only. Most copies gather dust in the editor’s office or in the press as a heap of garbage. These are also not abstracted or accredited by any Journal Citation.

The situation in science is no different. Most Readers and Professors are Ph.Ds without any papers published in journals, Indian and foreign. The universities do not follow a uniform syllabi despite repeated UGC directives. In most universities, syllabi are also a big academic fraud. While in one university, M.Sc (Physics) has a total of 14 papers, in another, it has a very small syllabi with 10 papers. Now, one can understand what is happening in the country in the name of higher education.

S.P. GUPTA, Kurukshetra

Writer par excellence

I read Dhananjaya Bhat’s write-up “India’s most acclaimed writer” (Spectrum, July 31), Premchand was a shrewd observer. He delineated the rural people’s mode of life in his writings. His heart melted with pity and love for peasants, labourers and members of low castes, who were affected by famine and exploited by callous officials, big zamindars and usurious sahukaars.

He was a protagonist of communal harmony and social unity. He wrote with simplicity using a straightforward language, often studded with words from everyday parlance.


More on Kohinoor

The year of rule by Maharaja Dalip Singh in the write-up by K.R.N Swamy in (Specturm, July 17) is wrongly mentioned as 1839. After the death of Ranjit Singh, it was the eldest prince Kharag Singh who ascended the throne at Lahore. He was followed by prince Sher Singh and it was only in 1845 that the youngest prince Dalip Singh was made the Maharaja.

According to records, Ranjit Singh was keen to bequeath the diamond to Shri Jagannath Temple, Puri.

H.S. SANDHU, Panchkula

Of death and rebirth

In “New angle on death”(Saturday Extra, July 30), Khushwant Singh has given his views about death and rebirth. According to him, what happens in life, good or bad, is just a matter of chance. It has nothing to do with God and good or bad past Karma. There is no rebirth and its all ends with death.

Even modern science accepts that nothing can deny the existence of soul or spirit in living beings. Thus it has to be an eternal thing. Again, there are many cases of rebirth, where a child can recall happenings of the past life and is able to recognise parents and relatives. If we do not accept rebirth, there is no better explanation. In fact, eternal soul, and rebirth according to past Karma, good or bad, solves all the problems, and keeps a person away from evils.

This is the unique philosophy of India, accepted with minor differences, by all sects which originated in our country like Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists apart from Hindus. Such a belief helps a person withstand pains with courage.



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