Ramadoss destroying AIIMS

IT is really sad that leaders like Union Health Minister Dr Ramadoss are bent upon destroying the autonomy of premier institutions like AIIMS and the PGI. The treatment meted out to Dr P. Venugopal, till recently AIIMS Director, is unfair. He has devoted over 40 years of dedicated services to AIIMS.

Sadly, there is a crisis of leadership. India has only rulers and not leaders. The leadership has been seized by persons like Dr Ramadoss who has only one agenda — “I, me and myself first and always”. It is more shocking that our world famous economist and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is a silent spectator to the whole drama in AIIMS.

Dr D. S. JASPAL, Ambala City




Actually, after Parliament passed the AIIMS (Amendment) Bill fixing the AIIMS Director’s age of retirement at 65 years, Dr P. Venugopal had no locus standi to continue in the office. Despite his professional eminence, he had transgressed the official code of conduct by instigating the doctors to go on strike against the Centre’s policy on 27 per cent quota for the OBCs in engineering and medical colleges.

In a democratic polity, the collective will of Parliament is supreme and one has to accept the decision of the political leadership. It goes without saying that the Minister will always have the last laugh.

SHER SINGH, Ludhiana

Checking blood infections

BLOOD transfusion plays a significant role in the healthcare delivery system. It saves human lives, but can also put the patient’s life at risk if the blood carries viral infections such as AIDS (HIV), hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV). Japan, the US and Western Europe have achieved significant levels of safety in blood transfusion through 100 per cent voluntary blood donation and by incorporating Nucleic Acid Testing (NAT) for screening blood prior to transfusion.

In India, voluntary blood donation is less than 60 per cent and screening of blood for viral diseases is done by the Elisa method which is incapable of detecting the viral infections during the window period, i.e. the time between infection and the development of antibodies.

Healthy people (in the 18-60 age group, weight over 45 kg with hemoglobin content of above 12.5 per cent) should come forward to donate blood. The health authorities should make NAT mandatory for screening blood for viral infections before transfusion. NAT can reduce the window period for several weeks for HBV, for HCV by 41-60 days and HIV by 10-15 days.

Dr AJAY BAGGA, Hoshiarpur

Defending Taslima

I believe every person has the right to live anywhere in India. It applies to foreigners too unless there is a visa restriction. If some mischief happens, the court has to take the call, not any individual or political party. Since Taslima has graciously withdrawn the “offending” lines from her autobiography Dwikhandito, without protection, she has nowhere to go. She just has to blunder her way through this kind of humiliation and I really feel sorry for her.

Taslima has the right to live anywhere in India subject to her visa restrictions, if any. And if she has done something wrong through her acts of writings, let the matter be decided by the court of law.



Taslima Nasreen, the Bangladeshi writer, has indeed been a writer of exceptional courage. I have read her book, Lajja, exposing Bangladeshi Mullahas who raped the minority Hindu women with all their barbarity and inhumanity in that country. I also read an Urdu translation of Satyarth Parkash during my student days in Kashmir, criticising the Quran, the Bible, the Hindu avtars and so on.

Whereas Taslima’s writings have witnessed protests from a few Muslim Mullahs, instigated by politicians with their own selfish motives, the Swamiji’s Satyarth Prakash got wide publicity without protests. As a rationalist, I, with my fellow citizens of scientific temper, salute Taslima Nasreen.

R. K. BHAT, Shimla


After Kolkata watched fundamentalism raising its ugly head after 15 years, Taslima Nasreen, who adopted Kolkata as her home, was packed off to New Delhi via Jaipur. Why can’t her critics and opponents fight her with the pen and not through vandalism? The West Bengal government bowed before the fundamentalists. What a pity!


Bus concession

The Haryana Chief Minister should help senior citizens by giving bus concession to them in Haryana Roadways buses as most of them have no source of income.




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