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Need to promote entrepreneurship in India

The article, “Time to promote entrepreneurship” (October 24), is timely and relevant. At a time when the economy is growing at a faster rate, there are opportunities for everyone. After India decided to liberalise its economy, things have improved for the Indians. We have been able to attract foreign investors and our own investors have shown interest in the country. But we need to have more entrepreneurs in the country, who are prepared to take risks. There are many Indian youths who are educated but are underemployed. These youths can be motivated to become entrepreneurs. This will help the economy in generating more employment.

Universities can start special courses to teach entrepreneurial skills to the youths. Research efforts should be industry-oriented so that the results can be utilised for public good. This is not being done in India.


Observing animal-friendly Diwali

Diwali is celebrated every year. Firecrackers are exploded and we feel happy that we have spent another day happily with our family (Middle, “Donkey’s Day Out on Diwali”, October 26). But we forget that we need to be conscious of the rights of other animals. For some odd reason, we forget that animals also have the right to exist peacefully. If an animal dares to encroach upon our territory, we attack and kill it. We feel that we are the masters and they are our slaves. This is human arrogance, nothing else.

The middle rightly highlights the plight of animals. It is said that animals do not attack without provocation. But humans attack and kill animals just for fun. Does it matter if the noise we create on Diwali day disturbs other creatures? Cows, dogs, cats and birds are all scared of the noise created by the bursting of firecrackers.

This is not to say one should not celebrate Diwali. But there are other ways of celebrating a joyous festival.


Mass movement

This refers to the editorial, “Libya after Gaddafi” (October 22). How correct you are about Gaddafi not reading the writing on the wall. History is replete with examples of rulers, mighty and powerful, who were impervious to the winds of change that blew.

The world today is in turmoil. We are seeing more upheavals than ever before. It has happened in the Middle East to put an end to the oppressive rule of dictators and despots and it will spread elsewhere too where autocratic regimes stifle the voices demanding liberty, equality and justice.

Another danger threatens even democratically elected government and that is the socio-economic disorder. Observe carefully the civil unrest in the US and Europe. These economies are now facing perhaps the worst crisis in history. After the advent of the Arab Spring and the Jasmine Revolution, it is now the turn of the people to show their anger and indignation at the rich-poor divide manifesting in the form of anti-Wall Street protests and civil society’s Anna Hazare-led movement against corruption in India.


Food adulteration

The editorial, “Tackling adulteration: Much needs to be done on food safety” (October 20), highlighting the evil of adulteration, is thought-provoking and most timely.

In the good old days, the milk we consumed was, by and large, pure; the unscrupulous vendors, at best, adulterated the health giving white stuff with “aqua-pura” which helped swell their margin of profit, but was not injurious to one’s health.

It is shocking to learn that these days milk is contaminated with urea; the fact that the market is being increasingly flooded with synthetic milk — a mixture of caustic soda, urea and vegetable oil — sends interminable shivers down one’s spine.

As the editorial points out, the people who can make a difference are the officials of state governments/municipalities/panchayats, who are entrusted with the task of ensuring the safety of food that we consume. Would the food-safety officials rise to the occasion? Well, I have my doubts.

Under the obtaining mindless rat-race for power and pelf among the officialdom at large, it seems foolish and futile to expect the food-safety officials to lag behind. And this is the saddest part of the story.

TARA CHAND, Ambota (Una)

Alternative cinema

It is a misconception that alternative cinema won’t succeed in India (Film activism, October 26). In fact, if it did not, we would perhaps have not heard of these films in 2011. There are people who appreciate these films for the simple reason that they show us the reality of life. In fact, we failed to encourage alternative cinema because we did not know where to find the audience.

Our educational institutions are not merely places where students read books. Similarly, films do not merely entertain us. They educate us as well. Students and teachers would definitely want to watch these films. They are the ones to change the mindset of society. Moreover, films based on social, political, economic and cultural issues make education more meaningful and interesting. These movies also entertain us. Therefore, alternative cinema does have a bright future with the spread of education in this country.

SUNITA SINGH, Chandigarh

Preventing terror attacks

The editorial, “Lessons from RDX haul” (October 26), quite rightly says that there is a need for stepping up public surveillance in India. We agree that it is difficult to prevent terror attacks, especially when terrorists get local support. But it is also true that we can take some urgent steps to prevent such attacks. If other countries have succeeded in doing so, why can’t we?

The editorial has rightly given the example of how CCTV footage led to the arrest of a commuter who shot dead a toll booth attendant at a toll plaza in Gurgaon. But it is really strange that the picture quality at toll plazas is poor. This needs to be sorted out. If cameras installed in public places are with high resolution, they would discourage terror attacks.

However, people should also be encouraged to remain vigilant all the time. It is not right to blame the police if it fails to prevent terror attacks. The police is part of the system and so are we. People must cooperate with the police to make it efficient. None of us can say that our security is not our responsibility.

As has been said so many times, terrorists succeed because they get local support in the form of vital information. Similarly, the police will succeed if it also gets people’s support. The police must also try to be people-friendly.




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