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The corrupt should never be protected

It is not shocking to read that a third minister in the Akali-BJP government in Punjab has resigned on account of corruption charges against him and his son in siphoning off government money meant for the uplift of the down-trodden and various other funds for the benefit of the deserving people of the state (editorial, "Who next?", September 18).

One really wonders as to how and why such persons with corrupt and criminal backgrounds are made ministers in Punjab. It is really shameful and shocking indeed to read that the Minister for SC/ST Welfare and Animal Husbandry, Ranike, along with his son and staff members has been looting the money meant for the development of the border areas.

Three corrupt and criminal ministers have to be shamefully removed from the Badal government. Certainly someone has to be hauled up for illegally protecting such influential accused ‘so common in Punjab’, as the editorial points out.

The editorial is right in observing the fact that chief minister is supposed to know what his ministers are doing. Ignorance is no excuse in such matters of high positions. The cases of Jagir Kaur and Tota Singh were very well known to the Mr Badal, and yet he made them ministers. This is indeed a highly condemnable matter on the part of the CM. He should give his clarifications on these cases.

R K KAPOOR, Chandigarh

Wrongly prejudiced

It is disheartening to note that the incidents of indiscipline in the armed forces are on the rise. Courtesy the apathetic politico-bureaucratic mindset, they have always been given a raw deal. Even their genuine needs and aspirations are not taken care of (Air Marshal RS Bedi’s article ‘Discontent in armed forces; September 10). Jealous of the historic edge, the defence personnel have over the civil servants, the latter have wrongly prejudiced the gullible political leaders against the former and instilled fears in their minds of a possible military coup in the country.

The professional integrity of Indian soldiers is above suspicion. They have always responded to the call of duty with unflinching loyalty and patriotism. But given a fast-changing social milieu, these soldiers unlike their counterparts in the past are no more reticent to submission.

This simmering discontent may have repercussions. Realizing that their job profile is very risky and challenging, the government should take all the necessary steps and accept their long-standing demands, including the involvement of the top defence brass in important decision making concerning national security. It will not only boost the deteriorating morale of the armed forces but also make them an attractive career option.

DS KANG, Hoshiarpur

Road mishaps

Fatal road accidents seem to have become a matter of common occurrence in the state, earning for it the dubious distinction of touching the top-most slot in the matter among the hill states in the country (“20 feared dead as bus falls into gorge in HP”, September 11). As many as 3,334 persons have died in road mishaps in the last three years due to human error. This was recently revealed on the floor of the state Vidhan Sabha.

Some of the main causes responsible for the fatal road mishaps include rampant corruption in the states traffic police and transport department, treacherous hilly roads, over-loading, over-speeding, overtaking, drunken driving, listening to mobile phone while driving a vehicle and ferrying passengers on the goods carriers. The inquiry reports about the accidents, by and large, remain confined to files.

Would the authorities concerned wake up from their slumber in the foreseeable future?


Govt needs to act

The OPED page (September 17) article has correctly mentioned that society wants a policeman, not any other device for controlling the crimes that occur.

No doubt, police personnel are made to work very excusably but the public fears to enter police posts stations with complaints as the procedure for lodging a complaint is not simple. Political interference is too much; if the police wants to act it is not able to do so. The government needs to act on the suggestion of writers to generate funds for extra work done from municipalities, authorities conducting sports matches and securities of concerned agencies. In the present circumferences, interaction with the public is a must by way of holding public meetings frequently and taking strict action against cops misusing their powers.

O P Garg, Patiala

New turn to economy

This refers to the government allowing FDI in multi-brand retail as commented on through the editorial, “PM unleashes reforms” (September 17). In the past he broke the myth of pseudo-socialism and the panacea of nationalising everything as finance minister under the Narsimha government during the 1992-93 budget presentation. After declaring his reforms, he then, in a very typical but confident manner, challenged the opposition from any quarter by uttering the popular quote, “Dekhna hai zor kitna bazuai qattil main hai”. No doubt, there could be some misgivings this time, but the confidence of the man who knows his job well might give a new turn to the economy of the nation.

PK MALHOTRA, Chandigarh



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