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Empowering voters with rejection right

I endorse the views in the editorial, “Right to reject: Supreme Court empowers voters” (September 30). The landmark judgment by the SC granting negative voting rights is aimed at empowering the voters to reject all candidates if all of them do not fall in the voter's choice of a worthy candidate. The verdict will also, hopefully, motivate the people, hitherto reluctant, to exercise their franchise. This will push the political parties to be extra wary in selecting their candidates.

However, there are reservations. Votes are generally cast on caste basis and allied factors. Money and muscle powers play a dominant role. All political parties nominate candidates on the basis of their sway in the constituency and “winability” prospects.

Besides, crores of rupees are spent on conducting elections by the government and in case of negative voting exceeding 50 per cent, the possibility of a re-election will add to an additional burden on taxpayers, which they and the country can ill afford.

The "NOTA" button option will, at the most, further equip us with statistics about the low credibility of the candidates in political arena. The possibility of manipulation of the "NOTA" button in EVMs also cannot be ruled out to sabotage the election.

The success of the well-intentioned SC judgment, I feel, largely depends on pruning dominant factors like money and muscle powers, which is a formidable task. Only time will tell as to what extent the court verdict is able to reform the electoral process and ensure the election of candidates who are capable, efficient, intelligent, honest and above board.


Manna Dey mum

Manna Dey is no more to render soulful songs. The era of melodious haunted songs is over with the passing away of the legendary singer. He was one of India’s most successful and versatile singers across generations. None has beaten the art of his singing — from patriotic songs to qawwalis, romantic numbers and humorous songs, he could sing each genre with equal élan and effortless skill. We doff our hats to this great artiste.

His songs filmed on Raj Kapoor were quite popular too, although Mukesh became the established voice for the original showman. Among the best songs that he sang are for character actors on screen and famous comedian Mehmood. I recall his qawwali, “Na to Caravan ki talaash hai”, the patriotic and poignant song, “Ae mere pyare watan” and the humorous number, “Ek chatur naar badi hoshiyaar’ and another great song, “Kasme vaade pyar wafa sab”. The list of romantic songs that he has sung is far too long to be mentioned.

The most difficult classical numbers were given to him. He was honoured with many awards at the national and other fronts.

Mahesh Kapasi, via email


Dada was the greatest of classical playback singers. Once the maestro hugged me so tightly that till today I feel that he is very much around, just as close to me.



He did justice to every type of song, particularly classical songs. Though he sang fewer songs as compared to other singers of his era, these were melodious and became popular. He will always be remembered by his fans.

IPS Anand, Mani Majra

Patwaris ‘evading’ promotion

This refers to a recent news item, “Promotion a taboo for state patwaris”. Ignoring promotion or seeking reversion on ludicrous and frivolous grounds by patwaris is unbecoming of government servants. It testifies the gravity of the belief of a mother who asks her tehsildar son when he would become a patwari!

Whenever anyone, either in a village or city, goes to a patwari for official work, he experiences a lot of inconvenience. Most patwaris have engaged one or two persons to do their official work. The higher authorities are ignoring this convention. A few years ago, when teachers posted in remote border area schools had started engaging teachers to teach on their behalf, there was a lot of hue and cry and they were brought to book. But in the case of patwaris, the authorities are keeping mum.

If the patwaris have so much work, posts of assistant patwari may be created. This will not only streamline the work and avoid harassment to the public, but also give employment to the unemployed youth.




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