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

Launch drive to dispel public fear

I agree with the editorial, "Power and politics: Allay fears about Koodankulam plant" (September 22), that "nuclear power is expected to play a major role in meeting the country's power needs". The opposition to the Koodankulam power plant in Tamil Nadu is unfair and unjustified. In this century, nuclear energy is the need of the hour.

Though there are fears among the public about the safety of such plants, the same should be dispelled by the government by educating the masses about its usefulness in daily life. People are afraid of the disasters caused by nuclear plants in case of accidents, because of the destruction caused by Fukushima nuclear reactors due to the recent tsunami in Japan. Their concerns are genuine. Awareness campaigns should be launched through the media to remove public fear regarding the use of nuclear energy.

R K KAPOOR, Chandigarh

Managing disaster

Nature’s fury, which recently struck six northern and eastern Indian states, is a wake up call to the people and the government alike (editorial, “Killer quake: Whole nation needs to back relief effort”, September 21).

The earthquake wrought havoc resulting in huge loss of men and material, raising many questions regarding the lack of our preparedness despite knowing that the affected zone was highly vulnerable to powerful tremors.

It is more disturbing that in spite of the National Disaster Management Authority of India being constantly on the job, the earthquake engineering codes and building construction guidelines in the earthquake-prone areas being in place, we do not remain alert.

There is no denying the fact that such disasters are the creation of our own handiwork. We have exploited the natural resources unscientifically for our personal gains disturbing the ecological balance in the bargain. The editorial has rightly said that compassionate participation of the citizens of the country is the dire need of the hour. Huge supplies of foodstuff and medicines are immediately required; damaged houses are needed to be put back into shape.In the meantime, our technical experts should take some lessons from countries like Japan to learn how to remain equipped and vigilant to safeguard, about 60% Indian land falling in the seismic zone, from such frequent devastating disasters.

R M RAMAUL, Paonta Sahib

Jobs for retirees

With reference to the article, “Rehabilitating retiring soldiers” (September 21), I want to say that it is not feasible to provide government jobs to all ex-servicemen after their retirement, but the government has formulated several schemes for giving financial support to ex-servicemen intending to set up small and medium industries.

India has been a major victim of externally sponsored insurgencies and terrorism for the last four decades. To control the most serious threat to internal security, military action is necessary to subjugate those who raise the banner of revolt. For that we must make the best use of our retired soldiers, which is a better option, to raise military units from the retiring soldiers to fight against the Maoists, who are already well-trained to face any challenge. 

So far, the government’s efforts have failed to end the Maoist violence, and they are a serious threat to India’s stability. Wait and watch policy will not work in this situation.  


Education reforms

Shelley Walia’s article, "Allow everyone to have a voice" (September 20), was interesting and thought-provoking. The learned author is perfectly right in emphasizing the need of doing away with the rigidity and compartmentalization in the present day higher education system. Academic freedom and introduction of innovative courses relevant to today’s society are the two elements essential to make the higher education system more useful and relevant.

After a long spell of more than 30 three years in a conventional university, I have got an opportunity to serve the Central University of Punjab, Bathinda.

I feel happy to share with educationists and the public in general the fact that the suggestions made by the author in the article are, to a large extent, being taken care of by the newly opened central universities in India.

Dr V K ANAND, Bathinda

Onion export ban

The editorial, “U-turn on onions: Government bows to pressure” (September 22), highlights the fact that the decision makers are fickle-minded. Clearly, the government has succumbed to the pressure of cartels of Nashik-based hoarders and traders. The result of September 9 ban will be reversed due to September 20 relaxation and the loot by middlemen will continue. The share of loot may be reaching those who extend political support to onion cartels.

The Prime Minister must feel the pain of the poor and force the authorities concerned to reconsider this anti-people decision. Prices must remain within affordable limits. Farmers of all states should be treated equally and there should not be any political patronage in a particular state. 

Let us hope that the remedial measures are announced soon by the government to relieve the unbearable load of very high prices.


Positive attitude in life

The middle, “Sunset days!” by I M Soni (September 19), was interesting and inspiring. It has made it clear that the body wears out with age, but the brain doesn’t. When our body retires, mind still remains active. Mind is the constant companion that never retires.

A positive attitude in life keeps us young. It brings cheerfulness in life and spreads joy all around, which ultimately builds a healthy atmosphere. So, we must learn to live in an environment that will make us feel young and joyful.

In the middle, the writer is satisfied as he watches his children fulfil their dreams that he himself could not.

It is also important to keep oneself busy in life. Khushwant Singh, the noted writer, despite his age keeps himself busy writing his columns and novels. His great mind reveals the truth that the body retires but the mind doesn’t. The “sunset days” can be turned into glorious moments by indulging in one’s passions and hobbies.




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