Governors must be men of high integrity

Ever since the Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court quashed the dissolution of the Bihar Assembly in May as unconstitutional, the Opposition parties and some sections have been after Governor Buta Singh’s scalp. One must look at any development in its proper context and evolution and not the post facto judgement from any source.

Mr Buta Singh has demonstrated that Governors are very carefully selected for their sagacity, objective approach and requisite boldness in framing their recommendations to the Centre. He has the right and opportunity to consult others and even sound constitutional legal experts before reaching a conclusion regarding his recommendation to the Centre.

The Governor had information that some legislators were ready to buy or sell votes. He was not bound to ask for punitive action since his informants would not give the required material for the court case. The only course open to him was to recommend the dissolution of the House and ask the government to hold fresh elections.


In any case, we urge the Centre to stick to the policy of selecting Governors who are persons of highest integrity and who can withstand political pressures.

Prof J.N. NANDA, New Delhi


I emphatically support Governor Buta Singh’s decision to dissolve the Bihar Assembly. It was totally immoral for the 20-odd MLAs of Mr Ram Vilas Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party to split the party and move towards the Janata Dal (United) to cobble together a coalition. It was contrary to the wishes of the people who had elected them.

The proper way for them was to get themselves elected on the ticket of the party which they had joined. In a democracy, due respect should be given to the people as they are sovereign.



Despite the Supreme Court quashing the dissolution of the Bihar Assembly as unconstitutional, Governor Buta Singh continues in the Raj Bhawan. This is simply pathetic and disgusting and makes us wonder whether this is what the vibrant democracy is all about.

This also gives credence to the recent London-based survey that “only 2 per cent of Indian people trust their politicians” and “73 per cent of them feel that democracy in India is meant only for the politicians”.

This was strengthened by Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil’s statement after the Jharkhand episode and consequent public outcry that the political parties have failed to reach a consensus on the implementation of the Sarkaria Commission report (relating to the Governor’s appointment).

The President and the Prime Minister, despite their compulsions, must prevail upon the Centre to maintain the sanctity of Raj Bhawans. Only retired top defence services officers should be appointed as Governors.

Lt-Col JIWAN SHAROTRI (retd), Kasauli


People have a right to comment on the merits of Governor Buta Singh’s action. Clearly, the Supreme Court judgement in the Bihar dissolution case (details of which will be spelt out by the Constitution Bench soon) is a severe indictment of all those involved in dissolving the State Assembly.

President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam is also a party to the decision as it was he who signed the proclamation on the dotted line soon after receiving the fax from the Union Cabinet in the midnight.

Dr J.P. GUPTA, Chandigarh

Making fruits more nutritious

Fruits and vegetables are known for their health promotion qualities. Agricultural scientists in the United States are trying to improve the nutrients in melons (kharbuja) and other fruits and vegetables by spraying potassium and calcium on the leaves during fruit development.

The potassium formulation is relatively simple, inexpensive and safe. Potassium increases the levels of beta-carotene, a powerful dietary antioxidant, and helps the plant’s photosynthesis, ultimately increasing the fruit’s sugar content. This, in turn, raises the levels of Vitamin C.

Calcium and potassium application could be combined to further improve the quality of melons as also crops like chillies, tomatoes, papaya, bananas, and pumpkins.

There is need for advanced study and research on the methodology of calcium and potassium application in India, the results of which should be communicated to farmers promptly. This will help improve consumers’ health and raise farmers’ income.


Aviation boom

No other sector has witnessed the kind of growth that the aviation sector has seen in India. Low-cost airlines like Air Deccan and SpiceJet have made air travel as cheap as travelling by the Rajdhani Express. Airbus hails India as the “next big story” in aviation because it is poised to grow by 25 per cent in the next five years with a projected investment of about $30 million. The total air traffic in India is expected to rise by 5 million passengers each year over the next 10 years.

However, this growth can be hampered by infrastructural constraints at Indian airports. The quality of airport infrastructure, which is a vital component of the overall transportation network, contributes directly to a country’s international competitiveness and the flow of foreign investment.



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