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

Himachal MLAs’ steep salary hike defies logic

This is in reference to a news item in a section of the media “In austerity times, salaries of HP ministers to be doubled”. The proposed hefty hike in salaries of these ministers/MLAs defies any logic. For every section of employees, pay commissions/committees are constituted to revise the salary structure. These commissions examine every aspect, including working conditions, cost of living, per capita income of the state and more. The report is then submitted to the government for its acceptance or rejection. Even after getting the report of such commissions/ committees, the government, in many cases, sets up implementation panels to look into the salary issue.

The salary structure for ministers/ MLAs, however, is revised by introducing a Bill in the Assembly that is passed without much discussion as there is a consensus among members who cut across party affiliations and join hands for the same.

The proposed hike in the salary of Himachal legislators will prove to be a big burden on the state exchequer. The common man would have to pay through his nose.

Undoubtedly, the MLAs need to live with dignity and their demand looks genuine in the wake of skyrocketing prices. But there is a need to look into many aspects before such demands are considered. There should be an independent panel with representatives from the three wings of the government — the Judiciary, the Executive and the Legislature to review the entire gamut of emoluments for MLAs.

SK KHOSLA, Chandigarh

Pran – the iconic villain

The recent announcement of 44th Dada Sahib Phalke award for veteran actor Pran has come as great news for his ardent fans. However, many feel the honour has come a bit too late for the iconic villain of Hindi Cinema at the age of 93.

The actor, who has starred in over 400 films in his six- decade-long career, retired from acting after performing in hits like 'Ziddi', 'Milan', 'Madhumati', 'Zanjeer', 'Parichay' and 'Upkar'.

From a mere photographer in Lahore to a top villain of the Hindi film industry, Pran Krishan Sikand’s journey has indeed been a wonderful one. Pran sahib had a distinct style and mannerism. Though he became a metaphor of evil with his roles, in real life, he was a thorough gentleman.

On May 3 when the prestigious Phalke award would be conferred upon Pran, Doordarshan should telecast some of his popular films as a mark of respect to the actor and his glorious contribution to the film industry.

JS PURI, Chandigarh


Chit fund mess

The Saradha Group chit fund company has duped hundreds of poor investors. Sudipto Sen, the brain behind the racket, asked for a minimum contribution of Rs100 per month towards chit fund and offered 15 per cent to 20 per cent returns on invested amount. Many people invested their earnings and now with the bursting of this racket, they have been left bankrupt. For some time, Sen paid the promised amount and took investors into confidence.

They, in return, invested more. But soon Sen disappeared from Kolkata and was finally traced to a hotel in Kashmir. Now he is under arrest and has been brought back to Kolkata but does it mean that scores of families that have been hit by the scam will get their money back? West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee should ensure that the poor get their hard-earned money back. Interestingly, two offices of the Saradha Group chit fund company were inaugurated by Mamata Banerjee. We sincerely hope that she now provides succor to sufferers. Sen has accused several politicians, MPs, Ministers from Bengal and North East besides journalists for extorting huge protection money from him to run his Saradha Group consisting 160 companies. A thorough probe should be conducted to verify his claims.



Now that Saradha chit fund scam kingpin Sudipto Sen has been arrested along with his two colleagues, the West Bengal Police should take steps to confiscate his assets and those of his associates and deposit them with the RBI till the case is decided by the competent court. Prima facie Sen and his partners have defrauded thousands of small depositors of their lifetime savings (around Rs 30,000 crore) and left them in a lurch. These scamsters deserve no mercy and should be immediately prosecuted by a special dedicated court. It is also being alleged that a good number of top politicians, bureaucrats and police officers are associated with the Sudipto Sen’s chit fund company. Each one of them should also be hauled up. Similar schemes like the Q Net/Quest Nest/Gold Quest operating in Maharashtra and other states have destroyed the future of a large number of families. The EOW wing should look into the operations of these companies and start investigations against them so that gullible investors are not duped.


Forgetful parties

With reference to news report ‘Major political outfits forget Gadar Party centenary’ (April 22), it is shameful that the ruling party has not participated or organised any state-level function in Punjab to commemorate the birth centenary of Gadar Party. The Punjab Government has failed to release any memorable poster in newspapers, totally ignoring the grand occasion. But it doesn’t forget to issue advertisements highlighting its achievements on regular basis. 

I salute the efforts of Desh Bhagat Yadgaar Committee, Jalandhar, for organising functions to highlight the contribution of Gadar Party and its activists. The ideology of Gadar Party is still relevant and required to be popularised among masses. The character of present political parties is no different from the British rulers.




HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |