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Billionaires must help Kosi victims

India has the largest number of billionaires overtaking Japan and Korea. We have not heard a single billionaire making any worthwhile contribution towards mitigating untold hardship and alleviating the sufferings of helpless people in the affected parts of Bihar. Corporate social responsibility cannot just be window dressing. The corporate world must remember that the poor and the disadvantaged of this country have a share in their enormous wealth. They must not usurp the share of the poor and the disadvantaged. The billionaires may like to take a cue from the gesture of Warren Buffet who contributed $ 1 billion to the Bill Gates Foundation for the fight against polio and several other diseases.

In fact, India should have a give list mentioning the contributions made by our country’s billionaires for social causes. I am reminded of Mother Teresa when she said – Give till it hurts.


Of what use are the rich lists if the people in them invoke only envy and not affection? Of what use is to me if their wealth grows four times every four hours if all is lost for that child whose every second is spent in despair and darkness? People in the flood-affected areas do not have a piece of cloth even to wrap the dead bodies before burial or cremation.

I appeal to the billionaires and other captains of industry to open their hearts and give generously to mitigate the pain and sufferings of people who have lost everything; their homes and hearths in the fury of Kosi floods. The media should prominently publicise not their entry and place in the Forbes list but their contribution in this hour of need.

I would appeal to all Ministers and Members of Parliament to donate at least one month’s salary for Bihar flood relief victims. This gesture will be appreciated by the nation. I was able to raise Rs 1.5 lakh from the morning walkers in the small Park in C Block of Defence Colony, New Delhi. Let no one deny himself/herself the opportunity to extend a helping hand.

SUDARSHAN AGARWAL (Former Governor of Uttarakhand and Sikkim), New Delhi

Haryana plan

The Bansi Lal government had formulated a Master Plan for controlling waterlogging and saving the low-lying areas of Jind, Hisar, Sirsa, Bhiwani, Rohtak and Jhajjar districts from the flood havoc. That Master Plan prepared in 1998-99 was under the state government’s active consideration for final approval and implementation.

However, after the change of the government in 1999, it did not see the light of the day. The present government should take a leaf out of the invaluable technical document and implement it after careful review.

Dr B.S. TANWAR, Chief Engineer (retd), Kurukshetra

Rural education

Prof S. S. Gill’s article, “Neglect of rural education” (Aug 19) was interesting. Undoubtedly, the issue raised by him is of utmost importance. Though we are developing our infrastructure rapidly, we are creating a chasm between our cities and villages.

Schools imparting education in villages are working without staff and infrastructure. This is not the condition of government schools. It is rightly said that little knowledge is a dangerous thing. So is the condition of private schools providing education in villages. Teachers working in such schools are unqualified and underpaid. As a result, can we produce skilled workers? No. The Punjab government should take firm steps to control the deteriorating condition of schools.

BALJEET SINGH, Anandpur Sahib


Where is the basic fault? In government schools all our India, children are from very poor families and hence neglected. Inferiority complex arises from the very beginning that they are government school students, lagging far behind public schools. Teachers don’t give proper attention to the rural students who are always neglected.

There is only one solution. The government should think beyond vote banks and make it binding on government teachers to admit their children in government schools up to Standard V. The whole system will improve automatically.


Scrap Article 370

I read the editorial, “Kashmir cauldron” (Aug 26). The Kashmir problem is a natural symptom of the scourge called “secularism”. Its genesis lies in Nehru’s bloomer in the form of unilateral and unwarranted ceasefire on January 1, 1949. The Himalayan blunder was compounded by the insertion of Article 370 in the Constitution.

Indira Gandhi could have rectified her dad’s folly at the Simla Agreement. She should have released the Pakistani prisoners of war only if and when Bhutto had agreed to throw the Kashmir question in the limbo. Clearly, the Kashmir problem can be solved only by the revocation of Article 370.



Repair the lifeline

Commuters from Dhandra-Monakwal, Kheri, Mehamudpur and a dozen other villages along with the residents of colonies in the outskirts of Ludhiana bear the burnt of damaged roads. The main road connecting these areas is closed these days due to work on the sewerage project. Alternative routes on Dugri-Dhandra road and Phase-II Road near Green Land Convent School are in a deplorable condition.

The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation should at least fill up or do patch work on these roads immediately. It will help ease traffic on both routes and give relief to the residents.



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