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How to stem the rot in politics

True, criminalisation of politics has increased of late. But what is the solution? Hapless voters will have to choose out of the few unwanted persons on the ballot.

Quite often, no candidate qualifies for the vote of a sensible voter due his involvement in scams, crimes, apathy to development and corruption. The last one is fairly apparent from the wealth and property they garner by the time they complete the term as MLA or MP.

The only solution is providing the option of ‘None of the Above’ or ‘None Found Suitable’ in the ballot paper. If NFS is more than 50 per cent, there should be a repoll with fresh candidates. This is one way of empowering the voter as well as stemming the rot in politics.

MADAN MOHAN, Palampur (HP)

HP neglected

In the past 61 years, Himachal got only 30 km of rail connectivity from Nangal to Una. The Railway Minister talks about the survey of a new track but conspicuously remains silent on the existing Pathankot- Joginder Nagar track which needs no survey but only broadening.

It is easier to extend this track to Kullu and further to Lahaul Valley which shares boundary with China. A tunnel through Rohtang Pass is already on the anvil. With Central assistance, it could be used for extending the track up to the international boundary.

Even the Defence Ministry would reckon it as strategically prudent because China has already rail-linked Lhasa. The Centre should give priority to this route in the national interest.

L. R. SHARMA, Sundernagar (HP)

Consumer courts

Corruption is rampant in some consumer courts. The Haryana government had rightly dismissed a former member of the Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission. In some district forums, a single president or member holds the court and passes orders as per his whim.

The state commission should annul such orders and pull up the presiding officers. Filling up of vacancies in these courts should be expedited to end the monopoly of a single presiding officer.

Some advocates, as full-time members of district consumer forums drawing remuneration and perks, also do practice in district courts. The state commissions should take action against such members and check corruption.

G. D. GUPTA, Advocate, Jagadhri

Checking pollution

I read the editorial, “Polluters must pay” (Nov 14). I agree that development is an ongoing process, but it cannot be at the cost of people’s health and environment. Industries must comply with the norms laid down by the respective pollution control boards, install air-pollution control devices, water treatment plants etc.

Industry and boards should work in tandem by co-operating with each other. The boards should provide all the technical know-how (to the industry) necessary for checking pollution. The government should direct the banks to provide long-term interest-free loans to the industry for the installation of eco-friendly instruments and devices. The media can also play an important role in spreading awareness.


Negative role

In a democracy, the Opposition has a vital role to play. It steers the ruling party in the right direction while keeping it on tenterhooks on issues of national interest. However, its role should be constructive and pragmatic.

Demoralised by its defeat in the previous elections and with an eye on the Lok Sabha elections, Himachal’s Congress leaders have started a vilification campaign against the ruling party. They are misleading the masses that the government has enhanced the subsidy from Rs 100 to 123 crore. The state government has already protested against the Centre’s principle of reduction in the quota of rice.

As for PTA teachers, the Opposition’s role is negative.


Legalise donation of organs

I read Amar Chandel’s article “Great organ bazaar” (Nov 10). Thousands of patients die every year because of kidney failure, thanks to the stringent law. Who donates a kidney out of “love and affection”? Insertion of this clause in the law is the height of naivety. Even the relatives, barring the very close ones, expect and receive compensation in some form, if not in cash.

Donation of life-saving organs like the kidney in return for adequate compensation from the thankful patients should be legalised, call it organ sale if you so wish. Even otherwise, clandestine sale of kidneys goes on unabated, with the donor getting only a meagre amount and the rest being pocketed by the helpful facilitators and the doctors.

Wg-Cdr C.L. SEHGAL (retd), Jalandhar



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