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People should jointly fight against bandhs

The editorial, “Bandhs vs people: Politicians must be made to behave” (July 5) has critically focused on the impact of bandhs on the common citizens and the states’ constitutional responsibility. Frequent bandhs inducing road and rail blockade brings the wheels of life to a grinding halt.

The inconvenience caused to the people, especially the aged, the sick or those going for some examination, in hostile weather conditions, can hardly be felt by the protagonists of such bandhs. The agitators will feel the pinch if their dear ones are victims in such a situation. This is a new breed of terrorism where peace-loving people are scared of coming out of their homes. Admittedly, peaceful demonstration is a constitutional right in a democratic society.

However, the sponsoring political parties should be held accountable for any violence and inconvenience caused to the public. Cutting across party lines, the people should raise their voice against bandhs.




I endorse the suggestion that people should oppose the bandhs and hartals sponsored by the political parties for petty political gains, causing public suffering and loss to national property.

If a bandh is peaceful, it is okay and the Constitution also provides for the freedom of expression and speech. However, when the protestors cross the limits of sanity and start harming common people, destroy buses, railway tracks, stop train services and block traffic on important highways, close shops by force, then the basic spirit behind this freedom is violated.

The media can play a vital role in generating public opinion against such anti-national activities. It can help lower the damaging impact of it. Political parties too must take utmost care while staging protests. They must clearly direct their cadres to hold only peaceful processions and not to target the traffic, shops, trains and the general masses.

The judiciary deserves to be lauded for its bold strictures against the Centre and the states for their failure to act against the violent protestors.



The political parties sponsoring bandhs are as senseless as stones. They never think of the agony of a passenger who misses his flight or appointment because of the bandh. Worse, some hoodlums destroy public and private property with impunity. As they are not brought to book, they go scot free.

The only deterrent to bandhs, as mentioned in the editorial, is to recover the loss of property from the parties and organisations that have sponsored the bandh or hartal.

Prof LAKHA SINGH, Sarhali (Tarn Taran)

Runaway inflation

The runaway inflation, escalating prices of essential commodities, health care and education and falling GDP are making the life of the aam admi miserable day by day. After four years of the UPA rule, inflation has crossed 11.91 per cent, prices of essential commodities and services have gone out of control and the GDP is on the downslide.

While the UPA government is busy in campaigning for the nuclear deal, the aam admi is in a state of misery. Will Mrs Sonia Gandhi and company be able to return to power by signing the nuclear deal and pleasing Uncle Sam?

Dr TIRATH GARG, Ferozepur City

Public library

Bhuntar is an important town of Kullu district. It has a Nagar Panchayat. It has an airport, but no public library. There are many educational institutions in and around Bhuntar. There is an urgent need for a library where the students and the general public can make best use of their spare time. It should be provided with newspapers and magazines in different languages. The government should provide funds for this noble cause expeditiously.

VIJAY MOUDGIL, Shamshi (Kullu)



Undermining VC’s authority

Universities have been the temples of learning in Greece, the cradle of Western civilisation. In India, Taxila and Nalanda were as prestigious as the academies of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle in Athens. Chanakya, the author of Arthshastra, preceding The Prince, was a product of Taxila University.

Panjab Univesity, on migration to India in 1947, had luminaries like Dewan Anand Kumar and A. C. Joshi, heading it with international reputation. However, after re-organisation of states, when the sway of local politics flowered unchecked, the impact flowed to the universities. These were reduced to handmaidens of degraded politics with pliable ‘Yes Boss’ cadre of scholars imposed as VCs.

If the coming generations are to be imbued with the essence of valued characteristics, then there is need to evolve a sound mechanism to select VCs out of the intellectual basket with guts of steel and immune to inroads of surging political waves.

In countries like the US, where universities enjoy innate autonomy in the real sense, Indian scholars also get opportunities to shine, which further provide slots to retired celebrities to contribute, i.e. Prof John Kenneth Galbraith, Dr Henry Kissinger etc. after divesting of political mantles. Caesar’s wife should be above suspicion.

V. I. K. SHARMA, IAS (retd), Jalandhar City



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