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PSCs cannot be made powerless

The Tribune deserves kudos for P.P. Rao’s article “Public Service Commissions: Look for persons of merit and integrity” (Jan 5), a two-part report by Chitleen K Sethi (Jan 12, 13) and the editorial “A dangerous trend” (Jan 13).The trend of the state governments of Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh to strip the PSCs of their powers of selection for various jobs in different departments is disheartening. If Ravinder Pal Singh Sidhu, former chairman of the Punjab Public Service Commission, brought a bad name to the constitutional body by indulging in corrupt practices, his case should not be taken as a universal truth and an excuse to trim the powers of other PSCs.

Mr Rao has rightly remarked that the selections made for jobs by selection boards or committees that function under the executive does not inspire confidence. Withdrawing powers of the PSCs will boost nepotism and favouritism in the recruitment process, leading to frustration among the deserving candidates. The honourable courts and even the President of India should step in to save the powers of the PSCs. It must be ensured that only able and qualified persons are appointed as chairmen and members of the commission.

IQBAL SINGH, Bijhari, Hamirpur

Blind faith

Kusum Arora’s report “If wishes were planes, Punjabis would fly” (Jan 16) was amusing. Since it highlighted the trend to offer toy aeroplanes in gurdwaras for going abroad when the visa is rejected or when one is denied entry in foreign lands.

Some devotees even offer replicas of horses to win the cases. Drivers offer watches, so that they can drive in time. Sikhism is known for fighting against superstition. It is not understandable why the members of the SGPC committee are silent over such practices taking place in gurdwaras.

Often, they are known for making a hue and cry over petty issues whenever there are any deviations in the religious norms. The SGPC must issue directions to strictly curb such offerings. Whether crores of Punjabis who settled abroad centuries back did offer aeroplanes to God is a question worth pondering over. It is high time for the Sikh scholars to nip the evil in the bud. Thank God, no astrologer has opened his shop near other stalls.



It is strange to know that people in Jalandhar offer toy planes in a gurdwara for getting an overseas visa. It is nothing but blind faith and a futile exercise. We are living in the 21st century of development and progress. The world is moving ahead at a fast pace, so we must shed our superstitious beliefs.


Wasteful trip

The news report “SCIENCE STUMPED: School children shown Mohali stadium, not science city” by Sarbjit Dhaliwal (Jan 15) was very startling. It is ironic that cricket got precedence over science. India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had once asked the great scientist Dr C V Raman as to how India can progress? Dr Raman had replied that it is possible only through science, science and more science.

It is a great pity that Punjab is taking interest in promotion of a colonial game. On one hand, the government is laying stress on science and maths in the government schools and on the other it takes students on such wasteful trips.


Punish Raju

The editorial “Getting worse” (Jan 15) reminds me of Graham Greene’s saying “Our worst enemies here are not the ignorant and the simple, however cruel; our worst enemies are the intelligent and corrupt”. Indeed, it is men like B Ramalinga Raju that we need to guard ourselves against. Such persons who have given a bad name to the country should be given the maximum possible punishment. The government will have to make strict rules and regulations to ensure that similar frauds do not happen in future.

SUBER SINGH PARIHAR, Khas Narwana, Kangra


Indeed, it is a great pity that B Ramalinga Raju, the former chairman of Satyam Computers, played with the career of 53,000 employees of the company. With his corrupt deeds, he has not only failed his company but also the nation. The editorial has rightly observed that the issue is not just to save jobs of employees but also to restore investor confidence. He should be meted out the strictest punishment.


Stop child labour

Children hold the key to the future of a country. Today’s child is tomorrow’s citizen. The responsibility of educating and grooming a child lies primarily on the parents but society too plays a pivotal role in shaping the destiny of children.

There are sufficient provisions in our Constitution to secure their future. The government is committed to providing free education to children up to 14 years of age. In recent years, the state governments have been providing free books and free mid-day meal to students up to 14 years of age. The children belonging to poor families are motivated to seek admissions in schools because of this initiative.

The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, the flagship programme of the Government of India, has helped in encouraging the poor parents to send their children to schools. The Social Welfare Department also contributes towards the welfare of low-income groups by providing scholarships to various categories of students. Still, instead of going to schools, we find young children working in houses, dhabas, tea stalls, retail shops, and automobile workshops. The Child Labour Act needs to be strengthened further and must be implemented properly.

DILBAG RAI, Chandigarh



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