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MPs, MLAs must be taught legislative rules

B.G. Verghese’s article “Life after July 22: Coalition dharma must change” (July 23) makes good sense since it draws our attention to the new socio-cultural phenomenon of emergence of nondescript elements in Indian politics.

One may lament with him such a change but it is unavoidable. Recently, we have seen the emergence of new leadership among the Gujjar community, especially in Rajasthan. A few of its new leaders would certainly add to such elements at the national scene. We should expect such leadership from Adivasis, nomadic tribes which number in crores. How will you check them from entering legislatures?

To cope with such a situation we need to open institutes of politics where knowledge about legislative procedures, rules of business and our Constitution is imparted to new elements. Dr B.R. Ambedkar had an idea of establishing such an institution; even Madhu Limaye had vouched for such an idea. The Central government must think and take concrete steps toward it. It will go a long way in making our democratic setup a vibrant one.


Secondly, I fully agree with Mr Verghese that corporate or professional MPs must be made to shed their extra-parliamentary interests by law as nobody will be willing to do so by convention. There is a dire need of such a law in view of the latest position where film stars and sports persons having become MPs failed to take part in Lok Sabha meetings. For instance out of 62 meetings of the 15th Lok Sabha held so far, Govinda attended one meeting, Vinod Khanna 16, and Navjot Sidhu 15 only. Dharmendra and Hema Malini would not have done any different, I suppose.

G.S. BAL, Jalandhar


After partition of the country and amalgamation of all the princely states into the Union of India, the grant of privy purses to the Princes was also stopped after some time in the interest of the country as a whole. Now, the Members of Parliament, besides drawing handsome salaries and availing of other beneficial facilities, are also getting funds under “MPs Local Areas Development Scheme” (MPLADS) which came into inception in 1993. Under this scheme each MP gets Rs 2 crore per annum for carrying out developments in his constituency for the welfare of the people. Thus, the overall amount for all the MPs comes to Rs 10,000 crore approximately per annum.

The grant of funds to the MPs under MPLADS, pension and providing them security men may be discontinued forthwith in the larger interest of the country in order to enable the government to utilise this money for overall development.

Dr R.S. Varma, Karnal

No political will

During the last many years there has been a plethora of writings by security and intelligence experts calling for far-reaching police and intelligence reforms to brace up for a fight against the ever- increasing menace of terrorism that has stalked India for over two decades now. The concern reached a crescendo in the wake of serial bomb blasts in the last few years in a large number of Indian cities.

It is highly regrettable that our political class is still unaware of the need for drastic and effective reforms in the police and intelligence setup. Till now the ruling parties, both at the Centre and in the states, have treated the police and intelligence setups as little more than their private agencies and unabashedly used them for keeping watch on their rivals or internal feuds rather than letting them do the police and intelligence work they are supposed to do.

It will continue till such time as the skewed political thinking is not replaced by a strong political will to mend matters by rising above narrow and petty political considerations.

The million dollar question is: Will they?

R.J. KHURANA, Bhopal

Refund won’t do

This has reference to a report that the Punjab government, in order to save its bureaucrats from the high court’s wrath, has refunded Rs 1.95 crore that they had misappropriated from Red Cross funds.

Would the Punjab government be treating its all other employees involved in such misappropriation of funds the same way?

I am sure that the honourable court would still punish the culprits severely. For it is not only a simple case of misappropriation of funds. Those who contributed to help the Tsunami victims or Kargil martyrs have been cheated as the money never went to the victims.

In case these anti-national elements are let off lightly a public campaign should be started by filing PILs in the apex court in bulk.

BALVINDER, Chandigarh

Of Chandigarh cops

On July 23, I had to go to the PGI, Chandigarh, as my 10-month-old granddaughter was to undergo D.M.S.A. (Gamma Camera) test as prescribed by the doctors. I and my family members were in our own vehicle. All the documents required under the rules were carefully maintained and my well-trained licence holder driver was also making use of his safety belt.

Just near the hospital two Chandigarh Police cops pounced upon our car (HP 36-4656) and volleyed a query that was honourably responded by my driver. Still, we were detained and harassed for about an hour.

Strangely, the same harassment is being meted out to most of the drivers of HP here in this “city beautiful”.

RAVI DATTA, Dehra (Kangra)


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