Today's letters

Today's letters




Austerity Measures

The government made a big show of austerity by asking MPs to travel by economy class. Shashi Tharoor’s tweet on this caused a big furore. It is a fact the MPs get far too many perks and freebies which are frequently misused. They are allotted lavish bungalows with free electricity and telephones in one of the most prime locations of the capital. Many MPs do not vacate the bungalows after their tenure is over. The MPLAD funds allotted to them should also be carefully monitored. Most of them have assets and cash worth crores

There should be curb on these perks.  Nothing is being done to check their annual summer jaunts abroad s which entails a huge expenditure of public funds.

Another enormous drain on the exchequer is the post of governors. Many of these are losers in elections or sycophants. They too have palatial residences with a host of servants as well as top grade security cover which is neither deserved or warranted. In addition they are also provided summer residences at hill stations because these delicate souls cannot bear the heat of their own country! The upkeep of these governors and their residences must be costing thousands of crores. Why is there no austerity for them. In any case these governors serve no useful purpose other than cutting ribbons to inaugurate functions.  This unwanted legacy of the Raj can be dispensed with.


Shanmugam Mudaliar


China putting pressure


It is seen that China is steadily increasing the pressure on India to come to a settlement on the border issue.For this, it uses the Kashmir card adroitly. First it started issuing separate visas to those visiting China from the state of J&K. Now, its travel bulletins show J&K as independent state and not an integral part of India. Still, the UPA government makes light of these flagrant violations and gives alibi to the enemy for the various provocations. The people of the country want to know what is being done about China’s belligerence? China’s 1962 treachery and the Indian government’s perfidy in keeping it a secret from its own people till the country was overrun by the enemy are still fresh in our minds to feel comfortable about this government’s weak kneed China policy.





Bang bang cricket

Rathnakar Shetty of BCCI had recently expressed that young and upcoming cricketers are bound to destroy their careers by jumping into the band wagon of T20 format, and they should mould themselves to play in regular formats for a longer stay. In the backdrop of heavy competition, any talented young cricketer will find it very difficult to get a call for inclusion in the National team, but the youngster can always hope to get an opening through IPL. The same youngster can certainly be in demand if he is a talented 'Bang Bang' type,and it does not matter if his career lasts for only a short period,as he would have made some money with fame !.




Need mature opposition

With Union Ministers from Karnataka joining Yeddyurappa  delegation to the Prime Minister to request for additional allocation of funds towards flood relief, Congress has proved to be a divided party with no controlled direction from High Command to the State Unit.  Local leaders of both Congress and JDS are only submerging themselves in the typically blind opposition-collision course immaterial of the current serious circumstances rather than engaging in unified fruitful coalition to help the distressed population.

When will the opposition mature beyond silly politics?


Poda De


Taliban must be defeated!


This refers to your frontpage new item,"Pak fallout worries India'.  The reported statement of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Chief Hakimullaha Mehsud that once an Islamic State in Pakistan is established, militants would be sent to fight India should be taken absolutely seriously.  The Taliban is menace to the whole world with a mind-set that goes back to the dark ages.

The general public may not be fully aware that the war in Afghanistan currently being waged against the Taliban is as much our war as that of the western nations.  The blood being shed by US and NATO troops is partly for our own future security.  How many people realise this ?  We should  therefore not only be grateful but we should take active steps to help defeat the Taliban in Afghanistan as well as in Pakistan.

If we dither at this stage for any reason, political or otherwise, we may have to pay a very heavy price later on if it has not already become too late.  The deceptive calm in India today reminds  of the countries who ignored the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party or believed that appeasement would secure peace.

Colonel R.S. Alvar (Retd)



Broader outlook needed

Kapil Sibal has been 'tinkering' with the education system since he became the HRD Minister. Some of what he says is not 'acceptable' and some are all good on paper.To get 80% marks in the XII examination is not easy. But if that is going to be the yardstick for an entry into IIT's, then perhaps we can expect 'book worms' with one track mind to get into IITs !

It would have been better to have two sets of 'cut off scores'-one for those who would like to do further research and the other for those who would like to join industry or become entrepreneurs. For the research oriented study a cut off of 80% at the XII level would be ideal.

But apart from just getting 80% marks a student must also show entrepreneurorial skills for becoming a successful 'industrialist'. That would be employment oriented study.

Also,psychologically, to have thousands of students who have excellent academic record but are 'looking out for jobs' is not a healthy situation.Frustration levels will rise.Therefore,Kapil Sibal has to consult several others who have wider experience and knowledge in the field of education for introducing a practical system of education.


If he is allowed to have his way/say,then in the next five years we will find students with blinkers-who have narrow outlook,asocial.Apart from their subjects they will know nothing else. Of what earthly use are such individuals ? Immense damage will be done to individuality, innovative thinking,and having separate identities.What is required is a broader outlook,an individual who can be creative,inventive and in a crisis situation should be able to provide solutions.Merely getting 80% marks at the XII level should not be the end all and be all in life for a young student.Hence,Kapil Sibal's theory is not sustainable for long.





Age of senior citizens


October is set to end and the issues of older persons too will be forgotten as it happens time and again. The concerned should continue to seriously consider and act on many issues in this area. The matter for immediate consideration is why some Government authorities consider 60 years as "Senior Citizens"(eg:Railways) and some consider 65 years (eg: KSRTC), positively there should be an understandable consensus and not disparity that causes problems for older people. The other vital matter is that with any a old age home that charge hefty amounts is that some overall audit should be in place to ensure fair play in operations and service delivery without discrimination to any one especially the weaker. It is very necessary that a statutory regulatory system is put in place by Governmental empowerment urgently, that can provide a blanket cover to old age institutions irrespective of origin or group running them.




US must stop giving assistance


Over the last week the events in Pakistan of bomb blasts across the length and breadth of the country including the attack on the GHQ of the Pakistan Army should open the eyes of the US that Pakistan is a failed State. These events are close on the heels of the Swat Valley incursion by the Taliban just a couple of months ago. Pakistan has patronized terror outfits with its armed forces and intelligence services playing the lead role which fact is hitting back at them now. The Taliban and other terror outfits have grown beyond manageable circumstance to take on their masters and controllers. It is almost as if Frankenstein is running amuck in Pakistan in the form of one or the other terrorist group which is intending to imprint its identity on the Pakistani nation.

Consequently US’ continuing to help Pakistan is a direct act in supporting terrorism and therefore it is important that President Obama pull back from offering any further assistance. The Kerry-Lugar bill may have stipulated certain conditions to claim the assistance but the US should know that it is only money that talks and while Pakistan will take the money and spend it as they think fit, the US will be left discussing the conditions on the bill ad nauseum, fully realizing that the horses have bolted the stable.

The one correct thing that George W Bush did, maybe involuntarily, as President was probably to give Pakistan after 9/11 the ultimatum to choose sides in the phrase - ‘either you are with us or against us’.

Musharraf  the then President of Pakistan wriggled out shrewdly out of that one and worked the deal to his personal and the country’s advantage. Since that time almost every incident of terror around the world and particularly in Europe and the US has had signs of the Pakistan hand in it. The US have been sold a lulu by Pakistan and unusually continue to feed them with aid.

S Kamat

Bardez Goa 


Disturbing climb down


The news of the government's climb down in climate stand is indeed disturbing . India like many other developing countries had held on to the view till now that it is not fair on the part of the developed nations to dictate emission standards to the poor nations without giving them the latest technologies for their various developmental activities.

It is their moral responsibility to do so as they have enormously contributed to the environmental mess we are in to day. Under the circumstances it is intriguing why the minister of environment Jairam Ramesh should recommend to the PM a major shift in policy in this regard? One gets a strong feeling that the UPA government is bending backwards to accommodate every whimsical wish of the US. One wonders whose interests our ministers are serving and why?


V.V.S. Mani


War crime?


The Goldstone report on the Gaza War has been endorsed by the U.N. Council on Human Rights. Israel has been found guilty of war crimes on several counts. Hamas also has been found guilty for firing rockets on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. The Hamas rocketeers fired into what are their legitimate lands. If Israelis, who had no right to be there, got injured or killed, can that be taken as a war crime? Suppose some robbers forced their way into a house, would not the occupants have the right to use any means at their disposal to deal with the intruders ? Therefore, can Hamas' action be considered a war crime ? Or did Goldstone include this to give his report a semblance of balance ?


C.J.M. Mathew



Beware of Chinese Encroachment


Communist China's ludicrous comments on the Prime Minister and His Holiness th 14th Dalai Lama's visits to Arunchal Pradesh has shocked the government and the people of India. China's continual occupation of Tibet without any legitimate right and it's ever expansionistic dreams is a violation of international law and against the charter of UNO of which China is a member.

So when the government of India deals with China, it has to be very firm. Please act before it’s too late.


Tenzin Sonam

Student of Master of Library and Information Science

Universiy of Mysore, Manasagangotri




Inviting trouble

Jairam Ramesh is facing flak after his statement about climate and he is now isolated by the Congress party. Great Saint Thiruvalluvar has rightly said ' Mind Your Tongue! If not you will be defamed!' The responsibility of speech is a very important aspect our ministers should learn otherwise they will land in a soup. Media attraction too tend to put politicians in a tight spot.

Mani Shankar Iyer is another politicians who got into trouble very often. Kapil Sibal, our smiling & cheerful HRD Minister also comes out with one or another innovation everyday and invites trouble very often The latest one being that 80%+for IIT! Politicians, especially ministers, need a grand rehearsal before a Press Meet!





One has to reap what he had sown

While fighting against its own creation taliban and other terrorist outfits, Pakistan must have now realised how foolishly it created or supported an evil force which was thriving on hatred and used against India in the name of jihad. Now taliban and Mr.Mehsud are using the same jihad call against Pakistan army. Pakistan must have fully understood the danger of riding the tiger called religion and supporting hatred for its selfish designs. The jihad, nowadays frequently referred by the taliban and other terrorist organizations is wrongly interpreted and is being used against humanity.


Jihad, holy war in Islam or Dharmayudda in Hinduism are fights against Adharma or evil forces against humanity, not blind war against the people of other religions.


This situation Pakistan is in today was to be expected. Humanity is bigger than one’s own religion or caste. No religion in the world advocates hatred towards another religion, bloodshed in the name of god or discrimination among mankind and the religions like Islam, Hinduism or Christianity are no exceptions.


It is always foolish to fight in the name of religion or caste as birth is by accident and not by choice. Although we are always proud about our religion or caste, the harsh truth is, it was not our choice but just by our birth or simple coincidence. Hence it should be realized first by everybody that every religion is great, not inferior to another, and has all the good things in it for the well-being of humanity and it is only some followers fail to understand or interpret the advices correctly.


Ramakanth. Udupa.K,



Donations collections   


I refer to the letter "Why do worthies collect, not contribute?" ( DH Oct 19) by M V NAHUSRAJ which most right thinking citizens have to endorse. The padayatra by the politicians and film personalities is more a show than real contribution.   They are only burdening the common people.  They are not poor people and are having plenty of cash and properties.  If they are real sympathisers they should donate at least a few lakhs of rupees instead of their padayatra.  Besides most of the collections may be misused also.




Be Realistic

Mr Kapoor, our army chief has stated in today’s statement that he can give Muh Tode Jawab  to Taliban .The same army general has declared few days before  that Indian army is weak to fight with China, Being a army chief he should not have openly made such irresponsible statements.

Taliban will laugh on it. He might have done to please Uncle Sam .The US is a selfish friend;It never talks against China who is vexing us continuously.


The Taliban forced Russia to get out from Afghanistan in desperation Now they are fighting with an other super power and its allies .The Taliban attacke twice our embassy in Kabul what we could do Is there any gaurentee tha they will not strike again? Is he challenging Taliban just to boost the moral of American forces?



No respite for the `Aam aadmi’


With reference to your article "SEBI changes rules" Deccan Herald Oct 19th, page 13, I would like to say, rules or no rules, the "Aam Admi" gets no respite. Even though the entry fee for mutual funds are removed with effect from 1st August 2009, The SBI mutual fund happily charges about 2% entry fee. (my transaction folio number with SBI, through CAMS, is 11600605). There is no way I can complain to SEBI as their web page does not give a link for "Aam Admi" to file the complaint; at least I was not able to navigate to that link.

Similarly, the Insurence regulator opens an online complaint form in Adobe. Since, many of us do not have Adobe writer, we can only enjoy the hand move as we move the cursor. I have a complaint against Royal Sundaram Insurence. (My Motor Insurance consumer No. is VP00097116000106.) The telecom regulator goes one step further. They have a list of people whom we can contact. These happen to be ( or atleast appear to be) part of service provider and they do not act.

 I have a complaint against Rcom.It is three months since I closed a connection and an acknowledgement was issued to on 27 July 2009 to that effect. The telephone was insantly disconnected. No refund is made so far but I have received bills regularly.The TRAI mandatory period is sixty days for the refund. The telephone number in question was 9341271780.


A consumer.

Scientist 'F' and Associate Group DIrector,

Gas Turbine Resarch Establishment


Economic Aid to Srilanka

It is disquieting that India has come forward to give $ 100 million aid to Sri Lanka for the rehabilitation of Sri Lankan Tamils.   Is India so rich as to give such a huge amount to another country?   The Union government which is dilly-dallying to release the promised Rs.1000 crore to Karnataka for the rehabilitation of flood victims is showing munificence to Sri Lankan Tamils.   It is for anybody to see that the centre is not willing to part with the promised amount whole-heartedly to Karnataka because Karnataka government is run by BJP.   The economic aid of the astoundingly high scale to Sri Lanka is coming as quid pro quo for the support given by the DMK at centre.   Unfortunately, the Union government is mum and turning blind eyes on the need for Rs.17000 crore in Karnataka to help the flood victims.

The Centre should spend Indian tax payers money for Indians only.  Indians should resist the move to dole out the amount to another country when our own people are starving.





Fence lakes, storm water drains

The death of Mr. Shridhar, sound technician in drowning in a lake is very tragic. There are two lessons to be learned from this tragedy. One that there is an urgent need to fence all Lakes and storm water drains to avoid such accidents in future. Not long ago, a car with occupants was also washed away in a storm water drain in JP Nagar. Second that he drove 80 KM to buy crackers shows how costly Bangalore has become nowadays. Not only Crackers, but also petrol and many other items are very costly in Bangalore compared to neighboring states. Unless the state rationalizes its tax structure, more and more people will travel to Hosur to purchase things, which ultimately results in loss to exchequer.

P S Prabhu

Expose of Wakf corruption              

The expose about the Wakf endowment  in terms of land in India are unimaginably huge-to the tune of around 4 lakh registered  properties and around 6 lakh acres of land is revealing. It shows how those who are managing the properties have literaly handed them to real estate builders at throwaway prices (In the name of Allah:Wakf corruption in India-19/10/09).

Wakf lands being third largest next to Indian Railways and the Defense department the extent of corruption can be imagined. Those involved are religious heads like and well known organisations and individuals. These gentlemen cry hoarse about discrimination against Muslims while majority of the Muslims are suffering a ghetto existence. Of course, our politicians are only silent observers and continue to nurture them as their vote bank. 

H.R.Bapu Satyanarayana


Ghastly Fire Accidents!

It is regrettable to note that injuries and deaths due to fire accidents during Deepawali times have become a routine matter every year in our country. People are not taking adequate care and precautions while using fire crackers and due to this deaths occur and soon festival's joy turn into sorrow. More than the buyers, it is sellers of fire crackers who are careless in-spite of strict rules and regulations regarding the selling of the item.

Otherwise the unfortunate incident at Pallipattu in Tiruvallur district of Tamil Nadu would not have occurred. The seller there reportedly did not possess valid license to sell the crackers. The godown at which he was stocking, did not possess adequate escape routes in case of fire accidents. Seven officials have been suspended for discretion of duties, but what is the use? .Reports suggest that some of the suspended officials did not enforce the rules strictly.

Vaikunt, Retired Director of Tamilnadu Fire Force, in an interview to BBC Tamil Broadcast on 18 th Oct, had said that there are adequate rules, regulations and guidelines to prevent fire accidents and deaths in India. The only drawback is that such rules are not properly followed up. He also said that the death of 6 firemen in an accident at Thane was due to their own making or negligence because they were not supposed to use lifts especially when the building is on fire and there are strict guidelines regarding this. Yet they ignored their own guidelines and dug their own grave. These all show that human lives in India are not given the value due to them.


Sukumar Talpady,
Kottara, Mangalore