20 Apr 2024  |   05:20am IST

Letter to the editor (20 April 2024)

One data base needed for India’s voters 

The so called tirade against migrants is rank opportunism and at best unconstitutional. Creating furore in Assembly is playing to public galleries,   self promotion and is  illegal to be supported by legislation. Enforce the existing legislation fiercely. The voter cannot be registered in two places at the same time  without certificate of cancellation.  The need of the hour is to have one data base for voters  in India. The migrants faithfully rush towards their native places and trips  are 

financed. Goa depends heavily for their work force in all sectors, domestic, industrial cheap labour. Indian migrants contributing towards exchequer are spread all over the world  in huge numbers. Who has issued Voter identity cards, ration cards   without cancellation proof? They serve as captive vote banks. Who has turned a blind to mushrooming slums, residences without documents  of ownership and are provided electricity, water, connection officially and house numbers?

Legal steps can be initiated as per laws in force to evict land grabbers   and all other subsequent illegalities.  No separate legislation against the Constitution is  required to throw dust in eyes  to promote aspiring legislators as saviour. 

Nelson Lopes, Chinchinim

Artificial Intelligence: The tool for universal success

As we find virtual reality is future of social networking, we march forward in the right direction.  It is notable to find that artificial intelligence is the tool for universal success and the social media plays a pivotal role in promoting various aspects of life in a simple and clear way. Facebook is used mostly in the sub-continent and it is a tribute for the service provider for so many people go tempting towards the most popular social media. 

 Life without the internet, an innovative technology, seems almost unimaginable for most people in India. Today the internet is intrinsic to media and communications, entertainment, politics, defence, business, banking, education and also administrative systems as well as to social interaction. The internet disentangles this extraordinarily complex information and communication technology from its place in our daily lives, allowing it to be examined anew.  The writing is on the wall for a make-over to provide people wide range of knowledge within the wall of a personal computer.

M R Jayanthy, Mumbai

Why are pay parking fees in Mapusa exorbitant?

It is learnt that the Mapusa Municipal Council finds itself in a controversy following a staggering 200% increase in the pay parking fees at the taxi stand amid mounting public outcry. While pay parking rates elsewhere in Mapusa stand at Rs 20 for four-wheelers and Rs 10 for two-wheelers for a two-hour duration, the exorbitant charge of Rs 60 at the taxi-stand raises eyebrows. It is understood that no resolution had been passed by the council to authorize such drastic measures. One fails to understand the logic behind having different pay-parking rates at different places in the city. 

There needs to be parity on the parking fees charged across any city. As a matter of fact the same parking rates should be made applicable in all cities across the State. Surprisingly, it is learnt that the Mapusa Municipal Council is collecting parking fees along with GST. By its very meaning the Goods and Services Tax (GST) is a value-added tax (VAT) levied on most goods and services sold for domestic consumption. 

In pay-parking, neither goods are sold nor any service provided. So how can GST be collected? Certain guidelines need to be laid down by the government for the civic bodies to follow while fixing the parking fees. For those vehicle owners who park on a daily basis, like shop-keepers in the market-place, a monthly parking-card could be introduced.

Adelmo Fernandes, Vasco

Excercise franchise without fail

As we disembark into the festival of democracy namely general elections, we touch upon various aspects as voters and responsible citizens of India. Voting is our birth right and we need to exercise our franchise without fail. Your vote matters in building the future nation and the young generation face responsibilities in this direction. On the one hand, public opinion signals public preferences and potential voting behaviors to policymakers. This impact should be greater under more stable democratic institutions. There is no doubt that voters are the kings. Democracy is a form of government in which the rulers are elected by the people. In a democracy, the final decision-making power must rest with those elected by the people. What needs significant improvement, however, is voter registration, registry clean-up, and voter awareness and education. 

C K Subramaniam, Navi Mumbai

Civil service officers survive tough conditions 

The Westminster system has dominated India's civil service like many other countries in the world.  The Indian Administrative Service (IAS), the Indian Police Service (IPS) and the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) are the backbones of the country's civil service.  These demand  impartial and non--partisan administration.   However, all qualities prescribed in the model can be put into practice only if the civil service is allowed to do its work without fear or favour.   The officers are expected to formulate and implement policies of the government  in consultation with the incharge minister.  The very fact that forthright officers may have to live in humiliation and helplessness, unable to connect with the people, is in short the predicament of India's civil service.  

Some officers go about their tasks unfazed by ministerial interference.  Only a few, whose integrity is beyond reproach, can survive the tough conditions.  All this is not to say all officers are holy.  The NDA government has been instrumental in  introducing the  "lateral entry" that has worked well according to insiders but may not be the only solution to the ills plaguing the bureaucracy. On April 21, 1947, the country's first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel addressed the country's civil service probationers for the first time and called them the " steel of India". National Civil Services Day is observed on April 21.

Ganapathi Bhat,  Akola

Introduce braille ballots for visually impaired

Elections are essential for the sustenance of a parliamentary democracy. No country can be prosperous and secure without free and fair elections. Every citizen of the country has a right to cast his or her vote according to his/her own will. In India, there are around two million people who suffer from either blindness or severe vision loss, but the government is yet to provide any facilities for visually impaired voters.

The Election Commission should immediately introduce braille ballot papers to enable visually impaired people to cast their votes with complete ease and confidence in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Jubel D'Cruz, Mumbai


Idhar Udhar