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Time to give fair sex its due

Do we need more proof to call India (editorial, ”Height of insecurity: Honour killing aftermath continues”, Dec 29) a banana republic? A female constable is driven from pillar to post for justice and safety. 

When a woman in the police supposed to guard our life and property is treated so callously, imagine the plight of an ordinary woman! There are thousands of Seemas who are feeling hapless and vulnerable because of the indifference of society and the government. They are thrown to wolves when they assert themselves and hold their own. Our honour lies in denying them even their right to choose their life partners. 

Ironically, the so-called fair sex is battered day and night mercilessly and rarely treated fairly. They are considered a liability.

That our President, Speaker of the Lok Sabha, Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and president of the party ruling at the Centre are all women, have no meaning as their position has not made any difference to the status of a woman at the grassroots level. 

Until and unless women themselves rise, stand united and fight against injustice, inequalities and discrimination tooth and nail, the patriarchal society will not treat them on a par with men in any walk of life. Laws enacted to protect their honour and dignity exist only on paper.

HEMA, Langeri, Hoshiarpur

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor, neatly hand-written or typed in double space, should not exceed the 150-word limit. These can be sent by post to the Letters Editor, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160030. Letters can also be sent by e-mail to: Letters@tribuneindia.com


Space mission

The loss of the Rs 3-billion mission that was scheduled to launch an advanced communications satellite was particularly painful, since ISRO was hoping to set a new record with its heaviest payload ever (editorial, “GSLV failure: Need to draw the right lessons”, Dec 28). The explosion of satellite is a major setback not only to ISRO but also to the economy of India as GSLV F06 caught fire within seconds.

Four failures out of seven launches have forced our space scientists to redesign the cryogenic stages of propellants. The space scientists working with ISRO are all set to remove deficiencies so that future missions to the moon may not be hampered further.

On the other hand, people who suffer owing to lack of basic amenities in the country do not hesitate to raise the questions about the priorities of the nation’s space policies. For we are yet to improve the living standards of its denizens and have failed to provide them basic facilities. Even then space programmes are meant to keep the Tricolour flying high in the universe.


Telangana issue

The editorial “Clamour for Telangana: Political parties must exercise restraint” (Dec 29) has explained the Congress’s dilemma on the Telangana issue and cautioned it against any soft-pedalling or prevarication on its part which can lead to a law and order problem in Andhra Pradesh. 

In Indian politics, all parties are prone to opportunism and populism. They have no qualms whatsoever about mixing and matching their strategies for drawing maximum political mileage from emotive issues.  

The Congress is worried more about the political implications resulting from the bifurcation of the state than about anything else. But what is now very clear is that due to political compulsions, sooner or later Telengana will become a state. The Congress, therefore, needs to hurry up to re-jig its policies to keep its political dominance intact in both states after the division.


Holiday bonanza

Thanks to the university, the students and the teachers of the affiliated colleges of Panjab University, Chandigarh can enjoy a long spell of winter break, commencing from December 22 and stretching up to mid-January. Due to the overstretched holiday schedule, there has been loss of effective teaching days from the academic calendar 2010-11 which speaks volumes about the earnestness of the university in raising the teaching standards.

The short September break was just an eyewash since actually it turned out to be much longer. The winter holidays too have been unduly extended making severe dent into the crucial teaching days. One wonders why the university has been increasing the number of working days for the teachers in the month of May when there is no teaching and reducing the working days during the peak teaching time in the month of January.

Whose interest is the university serving by reducing the effective teaching days – the students, the teachers or the ‘teaching shops’, the so-called coaching centres?

RAMA KASHYAP. Associate Professor. Chandigarh

Stand on JPC

Kuldip Nayar’s article “Fighting for PAC and JPC” (Dec 27) seemed prejudiced and biased. The stubbornness of the Central Government and the opposition parties on their respective stands for the JPC has caused great harm to the parliamentary system and hence to Indian democracy. The left parties were as adamant about the JPC as the BJP and were equal partners in disrupting parliamentary procedures. But, strangely, the left parties have found least or almost no mention in the article.

The writer has tried to shift all the blame to the Congress and the BJP. He has even made a forecast that in the next general elections the Indian public would not allow the Congress and the BJP to form the government at the Centre. I wonder while commenting on the national scene and the Indian parliamentary system, how can a writer forget inhuman and cruel acts of Naxalites and Maoists?


Geriatric healthcare

The article “Making old age worth living”’ (Dec 30) by Brig M L Kataria (retd) was readable. The guidelines to the elderly about periodic health check-ups are worth taking note of. Those who live far away from the big cities where most medical facilities are centred, need to read this valuable article more thoroughly than others because it is they who have access to only the very basic health facilities sans any special tests and treatment. The article makes them aware of various tests, diagnosis and treatments available for every geriatric ailment.

That the writer is himself responsible for establishing a number of senior citizen health care centres lends credibility to what he has written. Senior citizens need more than routine check-ups. The writer has also warned against using some habit-forming drugs which have harmful side-effects.

It would be relevant here to mention that most ailments develop their roots during one’s childhood and youth due to lack of awareness and wrong life-styles. A few among these, for example, are obesity and gastric disorders. Would it not be appropriate to introduce healthcare as a subject right from the primary classes? The governments have yet to give a thought to this. If such a subject is introduced in the teaching programmes, it will have salutary effect on the health consciousness of the people and we will lead to lesser geriatric problems in our country.

  L R SHARMA, Sundernagar 



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