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Translations can take Tagore’s vision further

The editorial “Celebrating Tagore; His genius will not be lost in translation” (May10) was apt. Rabindranath Tagore was not just a modern Asian, but was accepted and respected equally by the West also. From penning words to drawing lines, Tagore has been the all-weather poet-author-painter. Various facets of his personality have been celebrated in his 150th birth anniversary celebrations. Till today Tagore remains recognised as the most translated poet from India. Even sant Kabir’s poetry was introduced to world literature through English translation of some of his poems by Tagore.

Tagore was a visionary who could foresee the relevance of translations in a world where ideas need to flow freely. By translating “Geetanjali” into English, he gave the world the benefit of reading a mystic’s perspective, which reflects beauty, love and compassion.

The editorial has rightly asserted that those who don’t understand Bengali are deprived of a song like “jodi tor dak sune keo ne ase...”.


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

— Editor-in-Chief

Sense of design

The article “Creative cataclysm” (May 11) by George Jacob made a well deserved scathing attack on our societies seemingly lost sense of design in general. While concluding his surly but right outpourings, based on his keen observations, the writer has sought answers to many relevant questions in this regard.

In fact, he himself has given the answer to all of them at the outset; the over interference of an ill-designed Indian bureaucracy led by an equally apathetic political leadership.

Focusing particularly at our region’s dismal design scene may one ask that what led our policy makers and executors to shut down “Design Centres”, both in Punjab and Haryana, which were established with much fanfare a few decades ago?

BALVINDER, Chandigarh

Fighting corruption

There cannot be any comparison between what Anna Hazare is doing and Baba Ramdev’s interest in Yoga and socio-political scenario of the nation (editorial, “Ramdev’s fast one”, May 6). Anna Hazare’s social activism is different from that of Baba Ramdev’s. Anna Hazare’s thinking is akin to that of Gandhi’s; whereas Baba Ramdev has tried to sway the minds of the people through Yoga.

Baba Ramdev’s proposed fast with one lakh of his followers on June 4 is a planned effort and appears to sound like a showbiz. But Anna Hazare has an inner urge (call of the soul) and firm conviction in his ideology which drew the people instantaneously without any call. It may be better if both come together in their fight against corruption and other maladies eating into the vitals of the nation.

Dr S KUMAR, Panchkula

World after Osama

I agree with the views expressed in the editorial “In post-Osama Pakisatan” (May 11). It is correct that the US utilised Osama against Soviet Union in Afghanistan. But after the post-Soviet era, Pakistan exploited Osama for  ulterior motives. Whatever Pakistan may say it gave full protection to Osama and kept him as a “guest” in Abbotabad. Pakistan s protest over the operation to kill Osama is akin to crocodile’s tears.


Godmen & miracles

Raj Chengappa’s column “Ground Zero” titled “Sathya Sai Baba and life after death” (Apr 29) was interesting. and incisive. Sathya Sai Baba became popular largely because of his magical feats of producing rings and “vibhuti” from thin air. Gullible people flocked to Sai Baba in a bid to seek solace. The devotees made generous offerings. He put to good use the handsome donations that he recived and opened hospitals and educational institutions.

However, he seemed to love sycophancy and the devotees virtually trusted him and called him “Bhagwan.” Mr Chengappa has been candid enough to confess that all this “deification” of the Baba was “repulsive” to him.



Many self-styled Godmen are capitalising on the ignorance and blind faith of people. Magicians have time and again clarified that a magic act is not a miracle. Why are Sai Baba’s followers awaiting his successor by way of reincarnation? No one is above God almighty, which dwells within each one of us.


Summer is beautiful 

The middle “Summer gifts” (May 9) by Rajbir Deswal beautifully portrays the riot of colours that summer brings with it. After enjoying nature’s bounty during the spring season, the rising temperature brings one face to face with the scorching summer of the north Indian plains. But with summer come plenty of delicacies to cool the body and mind. These things prove to be a blessing in disguise for the scorched body.

I have seen summers of Benares, Shimla and Surat. In Benares, the summer heat is unrelenting and keeps people indoors during the day; the roads wear a deserted look. But in the evening, hordes of people gather around the sacred “ghats” of the Ganges and take a dip in the holy waters thus relieving the body of summer heat and the soul of mundane tensions.

There are a large number of vendors selling cool concoctions from “thandai” to juice of “bel-patra.” Benares is famous for its “benarasi aam” and “paan”, which are like a nectar for the tired body. The summer season is best epitomised by the song, “Yaa garmion ki raat jo purbaian chalen, thandi safed chadron pe jaagen der tak…”




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