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Service before self should be our motto

HK. Dua, in his front-page editorial, “India : Bold, beautiful and ugly” (Nov 10), has aptly lauded the farsighted vision and acumen of our space scientists and criticised the self-serving politicians.

A feeling of pessimism is prevailing in the country and people think that Parliament and state legislatures no more reflect their hopes and aspirations. Our polity is not on the right track. Small regional parties and groups are calling the shots at the Centre. They are not allowing the Congress to work for the uplift of the whole country.

We have to debar criminals from contesting elections, discontinue reservations in government jobs, educational institutions and legislatures on the basis of caste, ensure compulsory education and food for all students at the state’s expense, speed up the justice delivery system, put in place a people-friendly police force, remove special status for Jammu and Kashmir, and enact a uniform civil code.

Mr Dua’s concluding lines are apt: “If only our political leaders and those in other walks of life were to think equally big — and beyond themselves — as our scientists do, the country will be better off.” Amen!



It is an aptly titled and insightful editorial that justly extols the success of our scientists in launching Chandrayaan-I. This momentous feat earns us an entry into the exclusive club of the US, Russia, China and Japan. Besides, it augurs well for our future space missions.

On the flip side, the editorial justly lambasts some of our corrupt, incompetent and unscrupulous political leaders. They have fouled the entire political system by following the despicable motto: ‘Self before country’.

Owing to their narrow vision and lopsided priorities, the majority of our population remains poor, illiterate, backward and bereft of the real fruits of freedom, democracy and development.

Mr Dua rightly advises our politicians to follow the patriotic path shown by scientists in thinking “big” so that our country can march ahead. This advice is equally applicable to all voters who vote these politicians to power.



Very cogently, Mr Dua has asked: If in the domain of science and technology, our own scientists have the character and capacity to turn dream into reality, as they have shown by producing Chandrayaan-I with their singular dedication of single-minded application of science and technology, why in the domain of public life the idealism and vision of our freedom fighters that inspired people to win freedom is on wane and continually proving to be abysmally low?

The critical question to ponder over is how to make our political leaders and those in other walks of life to think “equally big” and “beyond themselves” as our scientists do?

The direction in which we would like to see our polity to move is well defined in the Constitution. Sadly, the spirit of moving in that direction is missing, and this has created the “ugliness” that we see around us — indifference, callousness, greed and decay in the political system.

We are not short of resources, human and material. We need only to think ‘big’ and act in the spirit of ‘Team India’ to conquer the unconquerable! This is not a big bargain. We need to identify our own interests with the interest of the ‘others’.



I endorse Mr Dua’s view that while our scientists have taken the lead in exploring the mystery of the space, our politicians are only thinking of themselves. Sadly, despite 60 years of Independence, 40 per cent of our population is illiterate and most of them do not have the basic economic minimum.

India cannot advance if we can’t provide food, clothing, clean water, healthcare and housing to the teeming millions.

Our leaders must concentrate on improving the quality of life of those living in the countryside. Only then, the Independence that we have got in 1947 will have some worth.



I agree with Mr Dua that while we have successfully launched Chandrayaan-I, our political leadership and society don’t think beyond themselves.

The latter has to try to root out hunger, corruption, casteism, regionalism and provide transparent and efficient governance.

Sadly, despite our achievement in space science, India has been ranked 66th on the global hunger index on a par with sub-Saharan Africa. We should use our scarce resources very efficiently to eradicate hunger and poverty.

True, space races do capture the people’s imagination, but will not help solve India’s more pressing problems threatening national integrity, humanity and environment.

Dr VITULL K. GUPTA, Bathinda

Lalu’s tip to Nitish amusing

I was amused to read the news-item, “Let us both quit, Lalu to Nitish” (The Tribune, Nov 11).

It seems Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar are fighting their own political battle over the Maharashtra issue instead of fighting for the cause of their people.

Both leaders seem to forget that the problems of the people of Bihar will have to be resolved on priority.

M.P.S. RANDHAWA, Dhapai (Kapurthala)



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