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Needed: Uniform retirement age

The editorial, “On retirement age: Court shocker to teachers” (Mar 7) has examined the pros and cons of raising the retirement age. I may add that fixing retirement age differently by the Central and state governments for their employees and that too for different categories creates discontentment and frustration among the employees who are to retire at a lower age than the privileged category which is allowed to continue in service beyond 58 years. The raising of retirement age beyond 58 years adversely affects the unemployed youth giving rise to social unrest and violence.

Moreover, there should be uniformity in the retirement age for all categories of state and central government employees and persons of rare competence, physically fit and enjoying impeccable service record should be given extension in service. It has rightly been observed: “It is true that life expectancy has gone up and people in general are capable of working for longer years……” But governments and universities have to strike a balance so that young India’s aspirations are not thwarted by the elders’ hold on decision-making.”



The editorial rightly projects and echoes the justified point of view on the retirement age. The demand of teachers to enhance the retirement age from 60 to 65 years is altogether unjustified. In this light the decision of the High Court on teachers’ retirement age in universities and colleges is welcome.

The education sector of our country needs a fresh vision, creative skills and dynamism to combat the challenges of future. The talented youth of this country is ready to explore new vistas.


Ageing issues

Ageing is an inevitable truth (middle, “Song of old age” by PC Sharma, Feb 18). In India, the situation is far more complex. An overwhelming number of people live in rural areas but migration from rural to urban areas is substantial, which creates problems for the elderly.

There are no programmes to train people to take care of the aged. In other words, the entire responsibility of taking care of the elderly rests with the traditional institution of the family. In the past, ageing was not a serious issue and societies did not give it a priority. They dealt with it as a natural phenomenon. But now, ageing has raised serious issues, which need to be addressed.



The article “Apathy towards the war-disabled must end” (Feb 18) by Lt-Gen Vijay Oberoi (retd) was a touching description of the plight of the war-disabled. The writer has rightly pleaded for the benefits/maintaining records of the disabled and need for a positive attitude towards them. Even the NGO’s can play a better role with the help of the media. India must treat the war-disabled with respect.

A.S. ANAND, Ludhiana

Tax exemption

While the announcement by the Finance Minister granting exemption up to Rs 5 lakh of income for senior citizens of 80 years and above is a welcome step, the relief granted to others below this age group is inadequate. More so since in the senior citizen category the age limit has been lowered from 65 to 60 years.

The new entrants will enjoy the exemption benefit to the tune of Rs 90,000 whereas the seniors between the age group of 65 and 80 years will get an exemption benefit of Rs 10,000 only. This is meagre. The government is requested to reconsider and enhance the exemption limit to Rs 3 lakh at least for those in the age group of 70 to 79 years.


Rape cases

The editorial “Setting rapists free: Supreme Court order kicks up a storm” (Feb 25) was thought-provoking and timely. The apex court has reduced sentence of 10 years rigorous imprisonment to three and a half years which the accused have already undergone and the compensation to the victim has been raised as well.

Despite the fact that rape cases are not compoundable, the compromise between the accused and the victim has been allowed. Indeed, there are reasonable apprehensions that the ruling may send a wrong signal to the nation and blunt the campaign to tackle the increasing menace of rape firmly.

RIKHI DASS THAKUR, Palbhu, Hamirpur



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