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Measures to boost agrarian economy

S S Johl’s article “Sustainable inclusive growth” (Jan 31) has given valuable and practical proposals to boost the agrarian economy so as to achieve the objective of inclusive higher growth in rural India. It is a fact that two-thirds of India’s population lives on agriculture. But the ever-increasing population has put the agricultural sector under strong pressure. It is now no more capable of employing more people. Fragmentation of land-holdings has forced a number of families to quit farming and move to cities. But, in the absence of working skills, they face disappointment only.

As proposed by the writer, to reduce the dependence of the rural people on agriculture, the whole pattern of the agrarian economy should be diversified. Set up small and clean industrial and service units pertaining to agriculture in the rural areas. Through quality R&D (research and development) as per the local physical conditions and socio-economic needs of the rural people, diversify rural economy.

It is a good idea to employ 80 per cent employees from the local population. Surely, all this will not only reduce pressure on the agrarian economy and urban areas but also save our rural people from unemployment, drug-addiction, debt and frustration. The political leadership must read the writing on the wall. The intelligentsia, the media, NGOs and social activists must generate necessary public opinion to force the Centre and the state governments to discuss, debate and adopt the proposals of eminent agricultural economists.


Monk’s case

The recovery of Rs 6 crore worth in foreign exchange from the monastery of Karmpa Ugyen Trinley Dorge should be taken seriously and should be fully investigated in spite of the Chinese denials to the contrary (editorial, “Monk or Chinese plant?” , Jan 31). Earlier Karmapa  “escaped” from Tibet under mysterious circumstances.

The present Dalai Lama has declared the end of the office of the Dalai Lama after his death fearing the Chinese plant to the high spiritual office as they have done in the case of the office of Pancham Lama. The Chinese claim the strategic town of Twang because the monastery there pays tribute to Lhasa. Taking all the factors into consideration, the incident should not be taken lightly.

Dr AMAR JIT SINGH GORAYA,  Griffith, NSW, Australia

Darshani Deori gate

The first written observation on Darshani Deori gates was made in 1881 by Major H.H. Cole in Golden Temple at Amritsar, Punjab, published in 1884 by the order of the Governor-General in Council for the office of curator of ancient monuments in India (news report, “Darshani Deori gate can’t be repaired, says SGPC chief”, Jan 13).

Major Cole wrote: “The doors of the Darshani Gate are of shisham wood, the front overlaid with silver, the back inlaid with ivory. The silver plated front is ornamented with panels only. The back is arranged in square and rectangular panels with geometric and floral designs, in which are introduced birds, lions and tigers. Some of the ivory inlay is coloured green and red, the effect being extremely harmonious.”

Keeping of these gates in ‘toshakhana’ (treasure) of the Golden Temple will make these more vulnerable to time and climate. It would be better to preserve these in a museum under the constant observation of qualified conservators to prevent their further deterioration.




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