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Toxic drains no poll issue

This is in reference to news report Toxic drains not a priority with any party (April 21). It is unfortunate that no party in Punjab has made a poll promise of protecting the drains, rivers and canals from pollution, rejuvenating the fragile eco-system and taking stern action against the industrial units that discharge toxic effluents in the water bodies, especially in the Buddha Nullah in Ludhiana and the Kala Sanghian drain in Jalandhar. Why is that so? Because the parties are getting money as donation from the polluting units, specially the electro-plating and dying units. Certain SAD BJP politicians own the units. The increasing pollution of water bodies is damaging the environment and destroying its fragile eco-system and eco-diversity.

This issue should have been a priority in the election manifestos. As per a study conducted on the Buddha Nullah and Kala Sanghian drain, if the pollution of these water bodies is not checked, after 10 years, every child in the area will be born with a deformity. The continues use of chemicals, pesticides and synthetic fertilisers has contaminated the groundwater and its consumption has resulted in serious ailments in human beings, birds and animals.

An NGO, Suraksha, was selected to plant eco-friendly trees on the banks of the Buddha Nullah, but due to the uncooperative attitude of the government and industrial units, nothing much has been done. The situation can be compared with a foolhardy Sheikh Chili, who cut the trunk of the tree on which he was sitting and had a fatal fall.

Capt Amar Jeet Kumar, Mohali

Going down the drain

In the news item Festival holds little meaning in waterlogged Muktsar (April 13), it is reported that work on the construction of the new drain is yet to begin. But the department is already cleaning drains in Muktsar district. In this regard, it has been reported that experts had found that the drainage built earlier suffered from several defects, such as (i) wrong alignment; (ii) incorrect section of the drains excavated; (iii) defective outfall of the drains.

We should fix a correct outfall in the drains in the Sutlej and then undertake desilting. And before that, the alignment of the drains should be correctly determined and their cross section worked out. The Drainage Department should obtain a proper survey plan of the area correct to 0.5 m contour in level. Otherwise, the system built will not work and the amount will go down the drain.

Dr GS Dhillon, Chandigarh

‘Dear’ khaadi

A few days ago, I was shocked to know that the Khaadi cloth which I wanted to buy was Rs 370 per metre. I had to opt for a cheaper cotton dress material. It is strange that Khaadi has become out of reach of the common man. It is an irony that politicians and party workers represent their Indianness by wearing Khaadi in this poll season.

Preeti Chumber, Adampur

Challan at Chandigarh

The Chandigarh traffic police at the airport chowk issued me a challan for having a film on the glass windows of my car. It is a transparent black thin plastic paper coated on the glass. The challan was issued only to achieve the target set by the authorities as I have visited Chandigarh many times in the same car with the same window film without any problem. Further, the challan is not readable and is a carbon copy.

I deposited Rs 1,000 as fine in Sector 29 the same day in heavy rush. The working in the office is not customer-friendly. People break queues. There is no indication regarding which window is for which work. The process to deposit the fine should be simplified. Due to this, I could not attend the bhog ceremony of my uncle that day.

Rajinder Garg, Mansa

Elderly await promise

At the fag end of 2013, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had declared that senior citizens aged 65 and above would be accorded 50 per cent concession in the fares of Hayana government buses with effect from January 1, 2014. This was a welcome relief to the senior citizens as they can ill afford the prevailing bus rates on account of the high cost of living due to inflation.

The orders were, however, not implemented by the transport authorities. Now, during the Budget session, the Chief Minister has reiterated his decision. The orders should be implemented.

K.K. Thukral, Panchkula

Most PSUs sick

A majority of the state PSUs in Himachal Pradesh are sick as their balance sheets report losses, as per a report tabled in the state Assembly recently.

More than 41,547 employees are working in these PSUs. Most of them are unhappy as they are not paid wages regularly. This makes them and their families socially insecure. Some PSUs have non-performing assets and the burden becomes overbearing with each passing year. A small state like Himachal Pradesh must avoid aping bigger states that enjoy such advantages as natural mineral resources, sound industrial base and strong transportation network that make industry a viable proposition.

Tek Chand, Una

Vote for change

The editorial on the Supreme Court judgement is timely and an eye-opener. It is correct that corporate houses undervalue their profits to evade taxes and create a nexus with politicians by giving bribes and funding elections. Arvind Kejriwal’s stand on auditing the accounts of electricity suppliers in Delhi is justified. All people fed up with the politial set-up should vote for change.

Dr Kumar, Tapa

Drug-laced lyrics

This is with reference to the growing culture of using words related to drugs and alcohol in Punjabi songs. In one song, a man has compared the beauty of a ‘muteyar’ with ‘feem’. This could only be demon’s poetry. I typed “afeem or feem” on Youtube and found a long list of songs, running into many pages. These songs are attracting the youth towards drugs. The government should take action against these writers and singers. Drug use among the Punjabi youth is a serious issue.

Kapil Dev Garcha, via email

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