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Cyber criminals ahead of law-makers

The widespread use of Internet and the explosion of electronic commerce call for both legal and regulatory frameworks to govern such business. With the recent passage of the Information Technology Bill into an Act, many of these issues have been initiated. But with cyber crime increasingly wreaking financial havoc on individuals, the perpetrators seem one step ahead of law-makers, who are still busy studying the issues related to cyber crime.

Organised criminals are using cyberspace to target credit card information and personal and financial details for computer fraud. But as of today, Indian courts are struggling to determine jurisdiction and with the few existing amendments made in the country to the existing cyber laws.

The Information Technology Act, the Indian Penal Code and the Indian Evidence Act need to be amended suitably in accordance with more established cyber laws in other countries. There is also a need to use more optimally the Cyber Emergency Response Team , first formed in 2004.

Harpreet Sandhu, former Additional Advocate-General, Punjab, Ludhiana

Animal welfare

This refers to The Tribune’s 130th anniversary special, “Punjab on the fast track of development” (February 2), wherein milestones achieved in production of milk, meat, etc, have been highlighted by the Punjab Government.

The animals, however, are victims of institutionalised cruelty wherever they are exploited for profit. Countless animals are suffering terribly in factory-farms, dairies, slaughter houses and in the leather and fur industries. In meat production, animals’ suffering during sale, transport and slaughter is most gruesome and terrifying. In poultry farms, cramming together of birds in cages never gives them the chance to do anything that is natural and important to them. Millions of cows and pigs fare no better. They are destined to unnatural death.

The adverse effect of high milk production level is reflected in the growing incidence of metabolic diseases by reducing the normal life expectancy of cows. They are then culled and pushed to slaughter houses.

The Government of India enacted the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Establishment and Regulation of Societies for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) Rules 2001 and directed each state government to establish a society for every district in the states to be the SPCA  of that district.

It is distressing that all SPCAs in Punjab are defunct and doing little to prevent cruelty to animals. So much so that the SPCA, Amritsar, established in 1910 and once a role model, is now utilising its premises for marriage parties and has abandoned the duties and functions entrusted to it.

If the government is concerned about increasing productivity it should be equally keen to prevent cruelty to animals.

Dr Soshil Rattan, Majitha Road, Amritsar

Dhoni’s wishful thinking

This refers to the report “World Cup farewell gift for Tendulkar: Dhoni” ( February 3). Following the Indian cricket team’s disappointing performance against South Africa, it would be naïve for the Indian captain to believe that India has a reasonable chance of winning the championship.

Dhoni should have explained his own poor performance with the bat, the team’s failure to get a decent start, the collapse of the middle order and the inability of his bowlers to make full use of the bouncy tracks in South Africa. He should also have explained whether he has succeeded in convincing Virender Sehwag that it is important for him to last longer at the crease, and Tendulkar to be more consistent.

Teams like Australia, England, West Indies, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are studded with medium fast bowlers, who can rattle any world class batsman with their bowling speed of over 140 km an hour, while Zahir Khan and company bowl nowhere close to that kind of speed.

The skipper needs to pay attention to these aspects immediately or else the team would again fail to win the Cup.

Subhash C Chaudhry, Indianapolis (US)

Misplaced optimism

In the editorial, “Raja behind bars” (Feb 4), your optimism is misplaced when you expect that Kapil Sibal would not only “get to the root of the scam” but also would recover the lost money from “wrong-doers”.

You seem to have forgotten that Sibal already told the nation only a few days before Raja’s much-delayed arrest that there has been no monetary loss to the government by  Raja’s misdoings.

Nobody is really convinced about the real intention of the CBI or the government even after Raja’s arrest. Indeed, most of us are prepared for the moment when the CBI would be filing a closure report , as it usually does in such cases, for lack of ‘concrete’ evidence against Raja.

Balvinder, Chandigarh

Egypt: India must assert

President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt was conferred the Nehru Prize for International Understanding in 2002. Now that Egyptians are rooting for his exit and speaking against his dictatorship, the Indian government seems to be maintaining a diplomatic silence. With not even Uncle Sam backing him any longer, India’s reticence is baffling. Is there a way of taking back the honour conferred on Mubarak by us ? India can scarcely be a global player if it consistently fails to take a stand on momentous events.

Ahsan Javed, JNU, New Delhi



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