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Build consensus to tackle inflation

The government has failed to address the issue of inflation in an effective manner (Prices beyond our control: Govt, August 5). It is not enough for the Finance Minister to say that inflation is a reality in all developing countries, including Pakistan and Nepal. The Finance Minister has surprised us by quoting these two countries.

The Opposition has also not come up with any effective solution to curb prices. Economic reforms have also slowed down considerably. This will not help the economy at all.

It will be in the interest of the country if the government and the Opposition sit together and try to find a solution to tame inflation. They should make an attempt to reach a consensus on this issue. I hope the Finance Minister is aware of the fact that the people of India are suffering due to high prices, especially of essential commodities.

If the rate of inflation continues to increase, I am afraid, whatever improvement in purchasing power the minister is talking about due to various schemes of the government, will not be enough even for existence. The Finance Minister should not be reluctant to take some bold steps in the long-term interest of the country. The Opposition should desist from taking undue political advantage at a time when the country needed their support.

DINESH AHUJA, Chandigarh


The ongoing debate in Parliament on inflationary trends and concerns echoes nothing new (editorial, Growth or Inflation?”, August 5). The real income index is the sole parameter to determine the impact of inflation. Inflation, from the macro perspective, is said to be a double-edged sword, which if not handled properly and effectively, can cause serious harm not only to the economy but also to the society.

Thus, it is important to keep such inflationary trends under control and initiate economic growth with the rise in overall level of economic welfare in the country. No doubt, the real income level in our country is rising. But this is due to increase in monetary income, especially in the tertiary sector. The pump priming measures, initiated by the government, are bound to increase money flow, which in turn, will adversely affect the value of currency.

This self-generated devaluation of currency should be allowed to improve the position of exports. Our leaders, instead of indulging in mere rhetoric, should seriously come out with concrete fiscal and monetary measures.

SANJEEV TRIKHA, M M (PG) College, Fatehabad

Political drama

I have gone through the thought-provoking article, "The rot is setting in: Time for parties to wake up"(August 1) by Kuldip Nayar. I fully endorse all the core convictions of the veteran journalist. It was really disappointing to see B S Yeddyurappa behaving like a too much wronged and misunderstood leader. I greatly appreciate the common sense of senior BJP leader L K Advani who prevailed upon the party leaders to ask Yeddyurappa to put in his papers. But an irreparable damage had already been done to BJP's credibility as a responsible political party. I must say that the people of Karnataka might not have approved of this high-profile political drama.

Similarly, the Congress also seems to be in deep trouble. The manner, in which A Raja, his personal secretary R K Chandolia and a few other bureaucrats have told the nation that they are innocent in the 2G scam, is really baffling.


Mid-day meal

It is amazing that the mid-day meal scheme is facing resource crunch. As the report, Mid-day meal scheme in trouble (August 3), states that schools with large strength somehow manage to run the scheme, but small schools are unable to do so. This will hurt the very purpose of the scheme. Why does the administration take so much time to release funds meant for this scheme? Should it not be its priority?

There is hardly any scheme or project in India that runs smoothly. Most of the times, officials say that they do not have enough funds to implement the scheme or the project. Government sources say that the government has provided the funds and it is for the authorities concerned to look after the implementation. While the government started the mid-day meal scheme with a good intention, it has not been able to implement it effectively, thanks to some corrupt officials who can go to any extent to fill their coffers.

I, therefore, feel that private companies should take it as a part of their social responsibility to finance this scheme.

PARMINDER KAUR, Teacher, Chandigarh

Armed forces

Brig Arun Bajpai (Retd) in his article "An honest General in the line of fire"(August 3) has observed that if Gen Kayani of Pakistan can get a three-year extension, the Cabinet Secretary of India can get one-year extension, what stops the government from accepting the legitimate age of Gen VK Singh as May 10, 1951?

What needs to be understood is that India is the largest and most vibrant democracy in the world ruled by bureaucrats and the political class. Our babus do not retire even after their superannuation, as they get employed in one capacity or the other.

As for Gen Kayani of Pakistan, one must keep in mind that the armed forces in India restrict themselves and scrupulously adhere to their role as enshrined in the Indian Constitution. Babus and political leaders know that the unparalleled professionalism and dedication of our soldiers, and their utmost loyalty to the government of the day and the nation at large, remains and will continue to remain unquestioned, even after the Centre refuses to pay the legitimate financial dues of Army officers, bans media coverage of farewell and taking over ceremony of Air Chiefs, unfairly curtails the legitimate tenure of Army Chief, and our MPs seek withdrawal of authorisation of sahayaks from Army officers.

Lt-Colonel JIWAN SHAROTRI (Retd), Kasauli (HP)

Rules are not uniform

Shriniwas Joshi’s middle, Rules are not for me (August 1), reminds me of my days in the executive council of Himachal Pradesh University years ago. Being new to the job, I generally fumbled for the relevant rules whenever I wished to justify my argument. I therefore rushed to some officials of the university for their guidance on the subject. Their response was: “Show me the person and I will show you the rule.”

The lesson was bold and clear: “The rules are not uniformly applicable to one and all; observe this principle and flourish; ignore it and be damned.”

TARA CHAND, Ambota (Una)



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