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Dangerous foods must be avoided

The editorial “Dangerous foods” (Feb 10) was a timely warning in the wake of mushrooming processed food industry in our country. Trans fats, the major sources of which are hydrogenated oils (vanaspati), partially hydrogenated oils (margarines), high-fat baked goods, salty snacks and fried foods are absolutely inessential and have no health benefits.

These definitely increase bad cholesterol and decrease good cholesterol, thereby increasing the risk of heart disease. A study by Harvard School of Public Health suggests that removing trans fats from industrial food supplies can prevent thousands of heart attacks and cardiovascular deaths in the US every year.

Use of trans fats in fried or baked snacks is wholly a matter of convenience and nothing else. Public health costs of such commercial expediency are much too high. The industrial use, specifically of vanaspati, must be banned by legislation as has been done in Denmark and a few other countries.

MANJU MATHUR, Chief Dietician, GMCH, Chandigarh

IPL: Why lavish spending?

For the forthcoming IPL tournament, the team owners are spending lavishly on hiring foreign players. For instance, Andrew Flintoff and Kevin Pieterson will be paid Rs 7.34 crore each. Will it not disturb the balance of payments position of the country? India is a poor country.

Is it advisable to drain out so much money to foreign countries? Moreover, if they are such good players, why was England defeated in all the five one-day internationals against India.

There is no dearth of good players in our country. Rather, there is a long queue of Indian players waiting for the chance. If at all we have to hire foreign players, no team should be allowed to hire more than two players.

What type of entertainment is this that makes our motherland poorer by crores of rupees? IPL tournaments are not bad. My objection is to the hiring of foreign players in large numbers.


CBI’s conduct

I appreciate the Supreme Court’s latest reprimand of the CBI over its alleged filp-flop and its U-turn(s) in its investigations against Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, former Chief Minister of UP. Last year, a Delhi court directed the CBI for re-investigating the 1984 anti-Sikh riots case against Mr Jagdish Tytler after rejecting the closure report submitted by the agency.

The apex court had earlier also directed the CBI to proceed against Ms Mayawati in the Taj Corridor case after the CBI intended to walk out of the case. There are numerous other high-profile cases in which the CBI is seen dancing to the tunes of the ruling elite.

All this defeats the spirit of the infamous Vineet Narain case of 1997 wherein the Supreme Court highly deprecated the practice of ruling politicians (mis)using the CBI for their vested political interests.

All this calls for an urgent appraisal of the prevailing mechanism. The need of the hour is to make the CBI a statutory body accountable and answerable to Parliament or to a Parliamentary Standing Committee.  Also, there should be an independent directorate of public prosecutions.

HEMANT KUMAR, Advocate, Ambala City


The judgment announced in the Nithari rape and murder case is an eye- opener for those who expect favour from the law by using money, muscle or political power. The judgement has brought some relief to the poor parents whose children were raped and murdered brutally.

The conduct of the CBI is doubtful in this case and also in the case of Mr Mulayam Singh. The CBI has failed to justify its changing stance. The matter needs to be probed thoroughly.

P N Gupta, Sangrur



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