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

Uncivil society

Apropos How civil is civil society ( August 21) Shyamal Datta has rightly pointed out that civil society movements rise from the ashes of the government’s failures. Had the government been more sensitive to rampant corruption in every walk of life, the Civil Society would not have risen to dictate to the government. While it may be correct that corruption pervades even NGOs and some civil society organizations, people would still turn to them as a lesser evil. The government’s pathetic handling of Anna Hazare’s fast precipitated a political crisis last month and it reflected poorly on the government’s collective ability and strategic thinking.

Subhash C Taneja,Rohtak

A correction

InRich legacy to cherish (Spectrum, August 28), the writer claimed that Bhai Kahan Singh Nabha began his innings as an administrator in 1980. 

This appears incorrect as he came in contact with the Maharaja of Nabha Riyasat only in 1884, after completing his formal and informal education, mostly at home , Sikh deras and from individual tutors like Mahant Gajja Singh ( music), Bhai Bir Singh Jalal (Poetics), Bawa Kalyan Das (Sanskrit) and Bhagwan Das Dugga (Persian). It was in 1885 when he was given the responsibility of teaching the heir apparent Prince Ripudaman Singh.

H. S. Dimple., Jagraon

Sanskrit teacher

A Sanskrit scholar with a difference by Harihar Swarup (August 28) made for delightful reading. I had never heard of Acharya Hanif Khan before but it is satisfying to learn of such scholars who rise above sectarian differences in the pursuit of knowledge. A person who discriminates on the basis of religion has no faith in his own God. May the tribe of the Acharya increase—we certainly need more such people to change our mindset and narrow differences between the two communities.

Kshitij Gupta, Narwana

Enduring pain

It is the government’s responsibility to set up institutions to take care of the handicapped, the differently abled and challenged children. The review of Arun Shourie’s book (Spectrum, August 7) made for poignant reading. It was shocking to learn that 4 per cent of our children are mentally retarded to such an extent that they depend on others for their daily chores. The parents are not only shattered but they also cannot give up working in order to look after such children. While they need to work and earn, the government must set up institutions to take care of such children –at least during the time the parents are forced to be away at work. Moreover, there should be adequate social security for such children after their parents pass away or if they are in no position to take care of them.

Wg-Cdr C.L. Sehgal ( Retd), Jalandhar

Right-wing terror

Kishwar Desai rightly claims (Coping with Right-wing terror, August 7) that Right-wing terror is on the rise in Norway. However, those who oppose immigration are not all Right-wing.

In an opinion poll in 2005, 49 per cent voters—this figure went up to 58 per cent in 2010 –said they wanted a complete stop to immigration; yet in 2006 the Norwegian Government allowed 45,800 new immigrants, 30 per cent higher than in 2005. Since 2006 this process has continued unabated. Norwegian politicians seem to have ignored people’s feelings over immigration and multiculturism.

Norwegians are neither ‘Islamophobic’ nor racist. But being a small country with a population of only 4.9 million, they are genuinely concerned at the large scale and ‘indigestible’ immigration. It would be unfortunate to treat immigration as an ‘undebatable’ subject in Norway or elsewhere in Europe.

Randhir Singh Bains, Essex ( U.K.)

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Readers are invited to send their comments, criticism, suggestions and feedback of the Sunday issue to sundayletters@tribunemail.com The letters should not exceed 250 words.



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