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Ill-effects of quota in promotions

The repression of Dalits in any form is condemnable. Sporadic incidents of discrimination against the community pointed out by Kuldip Nayar in his article (September 4) cannot be completely ruled out in a country with a great diversity of religions and castes. However, with the benefits of reservations these persons presently enjoy certain privileges and are better placed than earlier.

Unfortunately, despite all this, they still prefer to call themselves as such and distinctive matrimonial advertisement in the newspapers bears testimony to the fact that it has deeply infested the social fabric. A change of mindset is visible in the form of inter-caste marriages among members of these communities and vice-versa.

The writer has rightly opined that Mayawati's overzealous approach in getting reservations in promotions of public servants is fraught with serious consequences and will lead to disintegration. Political parties are supporting the move with any an eye on Dalit votes. It will create bickering and heart-burning in the event of granting promotion, ignoring the inter se seniority.

Politicians should desist from exploiting the caste phobia for getting votes in the national interest, as fragmentation will be harmful in the long run for the country.


Rupee in free fall

In his article 'The fall of the rupee (September 9), Sucha Singh Gill has suggested the revival of coal and iron ores mining. India is having vast reserves of these ores, but unfortunately their mining has been reduced considerably due to the active intervention of the judiciary. The Supreme Court should allow coal and iron mining in the interest of the Indian economy. The import of 138 million tonnes of coal and 3.05 million tonnes of iron ore in 2012-13 is certainly a matter of shame when we have large reserves of these in India. The foreign exchange needs to be saved by all means.


Subsidy transfer

The direct cash transfer of subsidies to LPG consumers has been started by the Central government in 54 districts across the country where the Centre transfers cash subsidies for LPG cylinders directly to Aadhar number-linked bank accounts. The government will cover 269 more districts by January 2014. As per the scheme, the cash subsidy is transferred for LPG cylinders directly into the bank accounts of the consumers while the sale happens at the market price. LPG consumers will have to pay the full market price for cylinders when they purchase them from dealers.

The government has taken the decision in haste without consulting all the stakeholders. The scheme will affect lower middle-class women. Indian society is male-dominant and most of the LPG cards (more than 90 per cent) are in the name of the male members who used to head the family. As per the scheme, the subsidy to LPG cylinders shall be deposited into the bank account of the LPG card holder, i.e. a male member of the family. If the male member of the family happens to be a drug addict or gambler, the burden of nurturing the family is solely on the woman who is made to do menial jobs to take care of their children. With this direct cash transfer scheme, male members will now have more money for their bad habits. Moreover, the money saved by women for education or other purposes will vanish in paying the extra cost of the cylinders.

Keeping this fact in mind, the government is requested to review the scheme and direct cash transfer to LPG consumers must be in the joint account of family members, i.e. in the name of husband and wife.


India's blunder

India has committed a great blunder by recognising Tibet as part of China. China has wrested Tibet and now laying claims on other Indian parts. Had Tibet been an independent country, problems on our northern borders would not have arisen. The Dalai Lama considers Tibet as an independent nation and strives for its freedom from China. The erstwhile USSR disintegrated into many independent countries, which nobody had ever expected. And who knows one day Tibet may also get freedom from the yoke of China. The Dalai Lama should declare his position on Aksai Chin and Arunachal Pradesh vis-a-vas Tibet if it gets freedom.

RK CHOPRA, Panchkula

Cow slaughter

In India, cows have been worshipped from the times immemorial. But now thousands of cows and calves are killed not just for beef, but also for their bones and skin which are used by the leather industry. Though Article 48 of the Constitution prohibits the slaughter of cows and calves, the culprits usually bribe the system for reaching them to slaughterhouses. We urge the government to immediately put a ban on their killing and slaughterhouses. We should look for other options (other than killing) to preserve them.


Politics over riots

This refers to the editorial 'Muzaffarnagar erupts: High cost of polarising politics' (September 10). It is really tragic that a minor eve-teasing incident in Muzaffarnagar has led to widespread communal clashes in its countryside. Had the district-level officers acted in time, the situation would not have worsened and anti-social social elements would not have got emboldened to take the law into their own hands. In this sugar-cane belt, thousands of Muslims have been forced to shift themselves to safer places with their children and womenfolk sensing a serious threat to their life and limb.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has proved to be a callow youth as far as the law and order situation in the state is concerned. Besides, the obvious limitations of the young CM and the local leaders in this sugar-cane belt have pandered to low cultural taste by targeting Muslims for their petty electoral gains. We must strongly condemn and expose such selfish and narrow-minded regional leaders who whip up a communal frenzy mindlessly.





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