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Death sentence for rapists need of the hour

Rape is the fastest growing crime in India today. The data released by the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) show that every hour 18 women fall prey to this heinous crime. The number of rape cases has increased nearly 700 per cent since 1971. It has grown from seven rapes a day to 53. A third of the rape cases take place in Delhi alone. Madhya Pradesh reported the highest number of rape cases at 2,900, besides molestation cases. Though these are the reported figures, the numbers are not important. Even a single rape case is a slur on a civilised society.

The number of unreported cases is far higher. It is estimated that only one in 10 women report it to the police.

If extreme cruelty in a murder case earns the distinction of rarest of the rare category which calls for capital punishment, why is it that gang rape followed by murder  does not qualify to be included in the ‘rarest of the rare’ category of crime? Conviction in rape cases has always remained abysmal, largely because of lengthy and cumbersome criminal justice delivery system.

Ensuring swift decision and justice for the rape victim is the only way to fight the crime. Section 376 of the IPC which provides for seven-year rigorous imprisonment for rape (10 years if the victim is a minor) needs to be amended. Rape should be included in Section 302, making it equivalent to murder.

It is only death to the rapist that can guard women and give justice, besides serving a lesson to others. If corrective measures are not taken now, it will encourage subversive activities in the future also.

SK KHOSLA, Chandigarh

Cut-copy-paste culture

The editorial ‘Post-PC world’ (March 13) very rightly echoes the importance and role of personal computers (PCs) and other sophisticated gadgets in our life.

The readymade availability of information through modified versions of computers is robbing students as well as teachers of their analytical skills. The creative instincts and traits are fast evaporating because easy and instant material is available on the Internet. This cut-copy-paste culture is speedily and dangerously spreading amongst the youth and is becoming a major impediment in their growth. Research scholars bank on information from Internet to aid their thesis. Writing skill, originality, novelty and freshness of thought are fast getting lost in the glitter of these modern-day tools.

The need of the hour is to use these gadgets as launching pads. The real strength lies in achieving something through your own efforts. If we allow these devices to become our crutches, they are surely going to weaken us and handicap us at times when these are not available. Like money, these gadgets are also good servants but bad masters.


Muslim vote bank

Mayawati is not entirely wrong when she says that her party’s loss was not because of misrule (news item “Poll results no reflection on BSP rule, says Mayawati”, March 8).

Mulayam Singh’s rule was even worse, but has been voted back to power. The pity is that voters were influenced more on the basis of caste and religion, rather than merit and issues like law and order, corruption, development, etc. For decades, Muslims and Schedule Castes remained a permanent vote bank of the Congress.

With the emergence of Mulayam Singh and Mayawati, they started voting for Mulayam Singh’s SP and Mayawati’s BSP, resulting in complete rout of the Congress from UP.

In the 2007 elections, the Muslim vote bank shifted towards Mayawati, thus with two major chunks of votes, of SCs and Muslims, she came to power. During the five-year rule of Mayawati from 2007-2012, Muslims realised that Mulayam Singh is more reliable than Mayawati, and in a better position to defeat BJP, whom they consider their enemy number one. So, they shifted their loyalty to Samajwadi Party. Thus, as things stand today, UP is very much in the grip of Muslims, and they are the major deciding factor to choose the ruler.


Leaders not flawless

In terms of development, there is no doubt that Gujarat has surpassed other states under Modi rule. Every great leader has certain weaknesses, which can be ignored because of their contribution. National leaders were responsible for anti-Sikh riots, Babri Masjid demolition, Emergency, Partition and the Kashmir problem. It does not mean that they were individually responsible for the pogroms. They were answerable to their parties, more so to the people. It is the political parties that play ducks and drakes with ‘aam aadmi’. Gujarat and the rest of the country need to move on. But, misdeeds must not recur.

M Kumar, New Delhi

Health awareness

The government as well as NGOs should start an awareness campaign ‘Health for every child’. Schools must hold lectures on health, prevention of diseases, importance of balanced diet and physical exercise. Organisations like IMA, Red Cross, ayurvedic and homoeopathic bodies, and other concerned quarters should jointly support the cause. One disease should be taken up in one month for bringing awareness against that particular disease (10 diseases in 10 months). Students could carry this message forward to their parents which would help the country become healthy and prosperous.

KR VERMA, Patiala

Nothing to lose being single

Truly one can't do without a life partner but the fun of living single has its own charm (middle "The bliss of being single!" March 8).  Undoubtedly, married couples have domestic, marital and many other problems, more than singles. The most worrisome problem is of children. Parents spend and sacrifice their lives to rear their children but unfortunately sometimes they are deserted in old age.  Their lives become miserable at the hands of their own children. 

Society as a whole has become selfish and materialistic. There should be sufficient money in old age so that no one has to depend on their children for day-to-day and medical necessities.

DP JINDAL, Mandi Gobindgarh



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