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Peace time awards

A snippet from The Tribune issue dated June 16,1914, in the column “On this day....100 years ago” (June 16) reveals how an appeal by a British soldier for a special medal for every soldier who had served for seven years in the NW Frontier brought this crushing reply from another: “In my days in India every keen officer and soldier tried to get to the frontier in the hope of seeing service and action. They never sought medals....”

In contrast, the present day scenario of our armymen seeking to be rewarded for normal peace time activity with seva medals is a matter of shame considering that hard work during peace time is rewarded with good ACR and promotions.

The state governments are going berserk in announcing monetary rewards without pausing to think as to why should this be done. Also, why has no jawan has ever been awarded any of these medals? The MoD needs to review the award of peace time non-gallantry awards as this leads to a rat race for getting these awards and cash compensation.


Uniform syllabus for all

The editorial "Debate over Delhi University course" (June 7), rightly speaks of the unnecessary confusion created by the introduction of a four-year undergraduate programme. The universities should avoid academic experimentation with courses and curriculum without studying the pros and cons. Such isolated academic ventures are generally not in the interest of the students and faculty. The UGC should ensure uniform courses and curriculum in all the universities of India.

Dr VK Anand, Patiala

Slow economy

It is a matter of concern that India's GDP growth remained below 5 per cent for the second consecutive year ending 2014. Apropos the editorial “Economy in slow motion” (June 2) , it is hoped that the Modi government would push up growth through faster clearance of projects that were held up by red tape and the Environment Ministry during the UPA regime.

However, the government must not ignore the ground reality because rain plays a vital role in agriculture production and this year a shortage of rains is predicted. But there are enough foodstocks and if handled properly, the food prices could remain unchanged. The RBI Governor must take up the issue on rate interests as per the prevailing situation.


Inflation belies hopes

Prime Minister Narendra Modi promised that his government would tame inflation and "achhe din ayenege". Contrary to this, wholesale price inflation has hit a five-month high of 6.01 per cent with the rate of rise of food prices running at 9.5 per cent. The bad news came immediately after Modi said that “o improve the economic health of India and pull the country out of the current mess, we should take some bitter decisions.” Is this any way different from the previous government's policy?

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has attributed the rise in prices of food articles to withholding of stocks on account of apprehension of weak monsoon. Then who will check this hoarding, Mr Jaitley?

It seems that the present government only made hollow slogans.

SK Khosla, Chandigarh

Tax farmers

To mobilise resources, the Finance Minister should tax agricultural income. A salaried person who earns Rs 25,000 a month pays income tax whereas a rich farmer who earns Rs 1,00,000 a month does not. Considering the importance of agriculture, more concessions should be granted to the farm sector, but it need not be exempted from tax.

S C DHALL, Zirakpur

Awaiting DA arrears

We are thankful to the Punjab Government for announcing the admissibility of the DA instalment from January, 2014, to its employees and pensioners on the Central Government pattern. But the payment of DA from June 2014 has been held up. It will be paid from December, 2014. The decision regarding the payment of arrears of DA from January, 2014 to November, 2014 will be taken in due course. The arrears of DA from July, 2103 to January 2014 will be payable after August 15, 2014.

Among the pensioners, there are a number of people above 80 years of age. These super seniors are invariably suffering from various diseases related to old age and need the money immediately.

GR Kalra, Panchkula

Insult to Mahatma

Jaitley’s recent statement comparing Ramdev to Mahatma Gandhi was in the worst possible taste. Gandhiji enjoyed the honorific title of the Father of the Nation. He was a simple, upright, selfless and plainspoken man, who never made unpleasant public utterances. To him, nothing was politically good which was morally bad. He spent hours in Harijan habitations. In August 1931, he went to London to attend the Second Round Table Conference. At Marseilles seaport, he told the customs authorities that he was a poor beggar having two spinning wheels, some utensils, four loin clothes, two towels and his reputation, which according to him was not worth much.

On the other hand, Ramdev does not mind his Ps and Qs while commenting on others. Recently, he insulted the SC people by his outrageous remarks that Rahul Gandhi “visited Dalit homes for honeymoon and picnic.” Instead of condemning his remarks, Jaitley has called him a saint. Do saints use foul language against others? This saint disappeared from the Ramlila ground, disguising himself as a woman. Ramdev has boundless craze for self-aggrandisement and has a business empire worth several crores.

When Morarji Deasi was prime minister, a member compared him to Gandhiji. Desai immediately stood up and said that there was no comparison between them and he was deeply distressed that the member had insulted the Mahatma.

Neither has Ramdev disapproved of Jaitley's ludicrous remarks nor has the latter apologised for the same. It appears that because of the humiliating electoral debacle, Jaitley has lost his reason.

Bhagwan Singh, Qadian

Letters to the Editor, typed in double space, should not exceed the 200-word limit. These should be cogently written and can be sent by e-mail to: Letters@tribuneindia.com



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