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

Sincere bureaucrats do have a case

Though no one would support a corrupt bureaucrat, the issue raised by M. Rajivlochan in his article “Corruption driving away wealth” (Jan 6) is pertinent and merits the attention of the powers that be. It is shocking to read that now even the legitimate wealth of India is being drained to distant and not so distant destinations, thanks to lobbyists and corruption within the government.

The writer has presented a cogent defence of the sincere bureaucrat who, even after passing rigorous tests of intelligence, memory, general awareness and reasoning of all types has to serve politicians (read elected representatives) who are often not only incompetent to handle their portfolios but at times also dishonest.

The former takes the brunt of all criticism and ill-will while the latter hunts for the dividend from the private sector where he usually has his own stakes as well. Since he/she is answerable to none, he/she multiplies his empire and develops chances of his/her re-election. Certainly, bureaucrats have a case.

Prof MOHAN SINGH, Amritsar

Rape victims

If charges of sexual exploitation levelled by Rupam Pathak against the former Bihar BJP MLA Raj Kishore Keshri, the person she reportedly stabbed are proved correct in the court, what would be shocking is that women continue to be exploited by the high and mighty with impunity in society (editorial, “Murder of Bihar MLA: Police must get to the root of it”, Jan 6).

The male-dominated society treats women’s problems with a biased mind. Political parties take up only those issues, which can benefit them. At best they give only lip sympathy, when it comes to women’s concerns. The leaders’ concept of ensuring welfare for them means giving posts to their own daughters, sisters and wives in their parties.  In most cases, women are left to defend themselves. 

Instances of women being discriminated against, harassed, maltreated, molested and even raped in their working places and homes are not rare. Society and the system are mute spectators to their suffering. Of course, laws have been enacted for their safety and advancement. But these laws are not enforced in letter and spirit.

Women take the law into their own hands only when they find themselves helpless and defenceless and, all avenues for redressal of their grievances are closed. The court, therefore, must take all relevant factors into consideration while adjudicating this case.


Shed religious intolerance

The assassination of Pakistani Punjab Governor Salman Taseer is a sad reflection of the state of affairs in Pakistan. It brings to focus the level to which religious intolerance has reached in that country, where there is no space for discussions and moderation. Taseer paid the price of his life simply for being a liberal Muslim in a country surcharged with religious fanaticism. His crime was to speak against the blasphemy law, which had the potential of being misused by leaders for personal petty and political reasons.

It is a pity that more blood is shed in the name of religion than any other cause in the world, and what makes it ironical is that no religion advocates it. Political, religious and sometimes military leaders misuse religion for their personal ambition and the common man quite often gets carried away.

The onus always is on the state and its leaders to change old-fashioned intolerant mindsets, make society more progressive, and discourage politics based on religious fanaticism. A pity all the more because having visited Pakistan a couple of months ago with my school children and teachers, I found most Pakistanis of all age groups warm and loving people. They all certainly deserve a better deal, and good leadership and direction based on love and brotherhood, rather than hatred and intolerance.

PRAVEEN VASISHT, Headmaster, The Lawrence School, Sanawar

Enjoy life

The middle, “Life in its evening” (Jan 7) by Vivek Atray is a clarion call to the people in their twilight years. Time flies past. One is taken aback on seeing some wrinkles or grey hair in the latter part of one’s life. The thought of old age makes one sad.

The writer has given some examples which should be emulated by all. Every moment of life should be enjoyed to the fullest as if there is no tomorrow. My father, who retired in 2001, has actively taken up reading homoeopathic medicine books. This has helped him in making the most of the time at his disposal along with treating minor ailments of himself and his friends.

Retired life gives another opportunity to pursue hobbies one could not while working. India is such a vast country, with so much to be explored. If nothing else, one can just pack some clothes and venture out on a trip to the places one has never been to.

Life is a journey and we must keep walking without worrying where we have to finally end. As rightly said by someone, “A good traveller has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving!”


Khushpreet’s murder

In the Khushpreet’s case an honest introspection by all concerned, and at all levels, needs to be done quickly and procedures set in motion accordingly.

Hopefully, Chandigarh police was on-board (and fully in picture) when the ransom was delivered. One must also understand that SSP/ SHO being on leave does not paralyse an organisation. There are clear procedures and practices during such absence and the system continues to function. But handling of the whole incident has left a lot to be desired, both from the UT Police and babus.

Brig BS GILL (retd), Chandigarh



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