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Increased health budget not enough

Without a protection shield against corruption, an increase in budget for public healthcare will prove to be a bonanza for the corrupt who enjoy life king-size at the expense of the poor man’s health (News report ‘Govt plans boost for health care, to invest 2.5% of GDP’ March 1).

India is still struggling with its miserable state of public healthcare system, along with failure of $14.3 billion National Rural Health Mission. It is a matter of national shame that our debilitating public healthcare system and the NRHM are languishing for want of effective governance and widespread corruption.

The recent spate of deaths in West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh has again focused media attention on corruption-riddled public healthcare in India.

An increase in the budgetary allocation will definitely increase corruption and many more will die at the hands of the corrupt. Unless there is political will to curb corruption strongly, such a budgetary allocation will fail to put the miserable health department back on track. Ultimately it is the common people who will bear the brunt of corruption and poor public healthcare.

Dr VITULL K. GUPTA, Bhatinda


Everyday we hear of exploitation, vulnerability, risks, insensitivity and indifference towards human lives in hospitals. Is there a family which has not been affected by the failing healthcare system?

Crass commercialisation being practiced by private hospitals on one hand and lack of concern on the part of the government despite being a welfare state is further compounding the problem (SM Bose’s article ‘At the cost of health’ Feb 23). Hypocrites are making followers of Hippocrates redundant. Greed and Shylockian streak will escalate anger amongst the otherwise peace-loving citizens. A debate needs to be started on medicines and related medical necessities being foisted by vested interests.

A movement must be started to draw the attention of powers that be, before it is too late.


Are strikes necessary?

Times have changed for sure (Strike: What for, March 1). Recent strike by bank officials was totally unwanted and unjustified. The working of government banks is already poor. Not only did the all-India strike cause loss of money to the banks but also resulted in great inconvenience to the public. Students, businessmen and the general public could not undertake cash transactions whereas companies could not get their government dues deposited in time. The top management of banks should take stringent measures to prevent strikes in future.



Times have not changed. Has the basic correlation of class forces in this country undergone a change? The countrywide strike organised  by 11 labour unions reflects the deep resentment of the masses against the government's failure to address the problems of poverty and unemployment and a visible willingness to play second fiddle to American imperialism.

It is a poor argument that there is almost a political consensus on economic reforms. The so-called structural reforms have widened the gulf between the rich and poor of the country. The common people do not see any reason to rejoice in the increasing number of billionaires in India.

Why should the people wait for five years before they wish to oppose the anti-people economic policies of a government?

The present day rulers must keep in mind that the common people cannot be sidelined for ensuring prosperity of the corporate houses.

The February 28 strike should discourage the Manmohan Singh government from slashing subsidies on food security, petrol, diesel and fertilisers.

Rules of the game seem to be favouring imperialism and capitalism yet common people's quest for socialist era will continue.


The UP polls

The clash of four political titans in Uttar Pradesh is interesting. The BJP is rudderless with ego clashes between leaders and longs for any sort of a comeback. The Congress has similar problems but its 2009 LS figures and an identified crusader in Rahul Gandhi are a saving grace.

Mayawati shaken by scores of her erring ministers and the suspected longevity of her mix-and match caste formula is hoping that her vote bank comes unscathed. The Samajwadi Party, abiding in patience without the baggage of office, tried to even out caste spreads and is counting on the traditional minority goodwill and most importantly has found its heir apparent in Akhilesh. The characters are defined and set for the final countdown on March 6.

R NARAYANAN, Ghaziabad   

Gadgets a facilty! 

Technology is meant for mankind but now man himself has become necessary for technology (Middle ‘Virtually real friends’ March 2). Now, a mobile is more important than friends or other family members. The youngsters can not live without a mobile even for a single day.  Net surfing on swanky mobiles has become a status symbol. Either you have it or get famous as a relic. Youngsters take great pleasure in seeing their long friend list on Facebook or other networking sites. This is an illusion, friends on social networking sites are not real friends.

This friendship is just an exchange of words. Why a person on the mobile or net is more important than a real person? This is a wrong trend.

Advanced gadgets are meant to help us and facilitate tasks for us. They may become a necessity, not necessarily to be developed into a habit.




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