L E T T E R S    T O    T H E    E D I T O R

Populism has ruined Punjab’s financial health

The editorial “Victory for populism” (Oct 14) has rightly observed that Mr Manpreet Badal had paid the price for opposing the policy of populism followed by every political party in India whether in power or out of power at the cost of the welfare of the state. The expulsion of Mr Manpreet Badal from ministerial berth has proved that no politician in India has the freedom to call a spade a spade. This move has affirmed the fact that democracy in India has become subservient to populist policies.

The escalation of Punjab debt from Rs 48,000 crore to Rs 70,000 crore shows beyond any shadow of doubt that Punjab is on the verge of financial bankruptcy. The expulsion will have far-reaching consequences on Punjab politics and shows that the Akali Dal is the monopolistic party of senior and junior Badal.

Doling out freebies to win and maintain vote banks is bound to prove counterproductive for all political parties. Such a sad state of financial crisis in Punjab is bound to have repercussions. The politics of populism and ruining of the financial health of Punjab by indiscriminate freebies is not going to make the Akali Dal any more popular. Mr Manpreet Badal has proved that he was not a sycophant. His colleagues in the ministry should show the courage to face the truth.

Unconditional loan waiver cannot be expected from the Centre. Perhaps, the Akali Dal has realised that their days of rule in Punjab are numbered. They want to leave a legacy of financial crunch and bureaucratic profligacy for the next government.



The editorial presented a realistic picture of the political and economic scenario of Punjab. It is true that unjustified subsidies have crippled the state finances and politics has prevailed over sound economics.

The present power struggle reminds me of Shakespeare`s play “Julius Caesar”. After Caesar`s murder, Cassius says, “How many ages hence/Shall this our lofty scene be acted over/In states unborn and accents yet unknown”. How true and prophetic!


Second innings

The middle “Retirement blues” (Oct 7) by Harbans Singh Virdi was lopsided and misleading. Rather than comparing retirement with effects of liquor on different people, we can compare life with a cricket match comprising two innings. The second innings (post-retirement) must be played with as much vigour and enthusiasm as the first innings if one has to emerge a winner. One must have a positive attitude towards life.

If the authenticity of my senior citizen identity card is suspected due to my bearing and youthful appearance, I will definitely take it as a compliment. One must have confidence in one’s capabilities.

Don’t consider yourself a useless and discarded individual. Associate yourself with social service and welfare projects run by volunteer organisations. You will regain that feeling that you are important and indispensable.


Hollow claim

Politicians claim that their main objective of entering Parliament or a state Assembly is to serve the people of the country, which is a hollow claim. The reality is otherwise. Their main objective is to serve themselves and their kith and kin. A large majority of them are hardly bothered about the development work or the welfare of the poor or the downtrodden. They just believe in issuing irresponsible statements and amassing wealth by hook or by crook.

Some of our politicians exposed their real face when they clamoured for more remuneration for themselves in Parliament in one voice forgetting their political differences. They have flourished and are flourishing at the cost of the taxpayers’ money. Politicians have no right to call themselves social workers.

H.K. SHARMA, Nawanshahr

Pay hike

Recently the Chief Minister of Haryana announced a bonanza of incentives for guest teachers, which included increase in their pay by 20 per cent. No guest teacher would be removed from service after regular appointments of teachers.

Female guest teachers would be entitled to three months maternity leave with pay and they would be allowed transfer in case of marriage or on other valid reasons. Casual leave would also be admissible to guest teachers. The Haryana government has given many benefits to guest teachers. On the other hand the Punjab government could not fulfil the demands of Punjab state teachers. In Punjab, new appointments are based on contractual basis. Besides, the government has not paid arrears to teachers.

TPS MALHI, Kapurthala

Admission scam

The editorial “Dubious medical admissions” (Sept 29) was an eye-opener. One is shocked to learn that admissions to prestigious institutions like the Post-Graduate Institution of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) which boasts of excellence in medical education and research can be arranged through money power by impersonation and manipulation.

Such decadence in the education system cannot be tolerated and deterrent punishment must be given to the guilty.

G R KALRA, Chandigarh

Rural education

Just go through the Punjab School Education Board’s results in matriculation in rural schools (S S Johl’s article “Systemic flaws in education”, Oct 8). Most of the students of Class X fare badly in science and maths. There should be a minimum target for the teachers. If these targets are not met, then action should be taken against them.

How many teachers motivate their students to take up science subjects? Village-level education councils can make a difference. More awareness camps about modern techniques of education must be conducted in the rural schools.




HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |