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

Provide rail connectivity to remote areas

R C Acharya’s article “India needs high-speed trains” (May 11) provided an insight into the developmental scene of high-speed trains in developed countries. It is indeed a sweet dream but certainly not a pipe dream for us, Indians. Do we actually need high-speed trains at this stage when rail connectivity is yet to reach many needy in important places in the country? Moreover, the railway infrastructure does not ensure safety and punctuality. Trains are the chief mode of transport, not only for common man but for our defence forces too. China, our hostile neighbour, is already breathing down our necks by laying rail lines right up to our northern frontiers through the barren plateaus of Tibet, only to make us weak strategically.

The priorities of the Railways Department should be to provide connectivity to the defence forces and to the public. The rail infrastructure needs to be improved to achieve punctuality, safety and cleanliness. After having done this, we can, of course, think about high-speed trains. Simply showcasing high-speed trains on some select routes will be like scoring a century by the captain of a cricket team but losing the match.

L R SHARMA, Haripur (Sundernagar)


Medical profession

The article “Need for cleansing the medical profession” (Apr 28) by Ravi K Gupta has genuinely expressed apprehensions over dwindling ethics in the medical profession. The unholy nexus between hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, testing labs has lowered the image of the medical profession. Prescribing costly medicines and tests just for the sake of commission is an open secret.

A.S. ANAND, Ludhiana

Osama in India?

Amar Chandel’s middle “If Osama was holed up here” (May 6) highlights the governance of democratic India. If Osama was holed up here and taken alive the political parties would have engaged in fierce mud slinging, to their advantage. Osama forgotten, there would have been demand for immediate dissolution of government on moral grounds for sheltering Osama, In jail, Osama would have received VIP treatment like “Ajmal Kasab”, who often demands “chicken biryani” to tickle his taste buds.

Intelligence agencies would have swooped on the owner and neighbours of the mansion and hauled them up, for harbouring the dreaded terrorist. Osama would have been a free bird after Kandhar style negotiations. The writer has aptly concluded “Oh Osama, if only you knew what a tactical blunder you made by going to Pakistan.”

HARBANS SINGH, Ambala Cantt.

Convicting politicians

The editorial “Punjab MLA’s conviction: One swallow does not make a summer” (May 5) hit the bull’s eye. The Mohali Court sentencing Thandal to three years imprisonment for corrupt practices enhances public confidence in the efficacy of the law and sends a right signal to society. Unfortunately, corruption is virtually omnipresent and omnipotent and Punjab does not have a law to confiscate property.

AJIT SINGH, Rankin, Windsor, Canada

Power tariff

The rise in power tariff is not the solution to tackle power shortage (editorial, “Power tariff hike”, May 11). It will be easier to justify increase in tariffs if it is accompanied by improvements in quality and reliability. The current levels of power subsidies will have to be reduced and targeted. Subsidies are not only unsustainable given the condition of state government finances but also undesirable given its impact on groundwater extraction. Free power breeds wastage and inefficiency.

Also there is a need for a separate organisation for delivering power to agriculture. This is necessary not only from the perspective of meeting the agriculture demand more efficiently but also to separate the problems of rationing and subsidy in the case of power supply to agriculture, from other parts of the organisation. The only way to manage subsidies and control of supply to the sector would be to physically separate the agriculture supply network.

RAJIV ARORA, Ferozepur

Number one paper

As usual, The Tribune scores well over other English dailies (news report, “The Tribune remains No. 1 in the region”, May 9). However, the survey seems limited and brings out only the figures. Shouldn’t it be a little more comprehensive? The readers should be asked the reasons for their preference for The Tribune over other papers.

For example, if I am asked the question, my answer would be bold editorials, fairly unbiased and objective reporting. The Tribune is truly the voice of the people — providing adequate space for readers’ letters and publishing even those carrying contrary views and pleasant overall presentation. Well done, The Tribune and keep it up.

Wg-Cdr C.L. SEHGAL (retd), Jalandhar



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