01 Oct 2022  |   05:16am IST

Letters to the editor (01 October 2022)

Significance of Gandhi Jayanti

Gandhi Jayanti is a national holiday in India. It is celebrated on October 2 every year. This day is celebrated in honour of the birth anniversary of the Father of the nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.

Gandhiji, as he was popularly known, is still remembered for all the wonderful things he taught, not just to Indians but to the rest of the world too.

One thing to mention is that Gandhiji always maintained his originality. As a barrister, he travelled to the United Kingdom and South Africa. He would always wear his traditional Indian dress and would respect his culture and customs. He would do that even though foreign nationals did not understand, like or respect that.

Jubel D'Cruz, Mumbai

People taken for granted

This has reference to the article ‘The government cannot certify the quality of journalism, only people can’ (Herald Insight, September 30, 2022). You have hit the nail on the head! Yes, you couldn't have put it better. 

In fact you have opened a Pandora's box so to say, by raising several points. You have rightly stated, both the Executive and the Media as pillars of democracy, get their legitimacy from the people. So, it is only right that only the people would be in the right position to judge the level of journalism prevalent in the country. At the end of the day, it is the people who must have a say in all matters.

Unfortunately however, the people of this country are being taken for granted. Their mandate is being thrown out of the window, their trust is betrayed. They are being judged by the authorities on the basis of their views, their opinion. I agree why you, journalism will always remain a mission. Kudos to your insight on journalism. A mere pen is indeed mightier that the sword. Let truth prevail.

Melville X D'Souza, Mumbai

Coffee denotes energy, implies joy

What goes best with a cup of coffee? Another cup of hot coffee. Coffee denotes energy; coffee symbolises joy. Above all, it is a celebration of friendship. Though the drink is not as popular as tea, at least in India, and is confined to some pockets of the country, the liveliness and aura surrounding coffee are unbeatable. Finland, Italy, Denmark, Netherlands, Sweden, Belgium, Indonesia, Canada are identified as top coffee consuming countries per capita. In some of these, coffee consumption is rooted in culture. 

Old timers say that coffee could connect people and create communities. For long, coffee has been used as a panacea for working late hours. Some believe that if they go hours without drinking coffee, then they must be sleeping. Unlike tea, coffee is 'prescribed' as a medicine to keep small disorders away. Amidst more than four hundred million cups of coffee consumed annually, in more than 85 coffee growing countries, coffee growers were in a tight spot when the corona pandemic took the world by storm. 

In India, there has been a large scale migration of coffee plantation workers from the eastern part to states like Karnataka and Kerala due to better options. Newer techniques for production and sustainability of coffee have to be hastened. Before the charismatic drink loses its charm, something has to be done. 

Ganapathi Bhat, Akola 

Street justice should be avoided

The Vasco police on Thursday reportedly arrested three persons identified in a viral video where a group of people was seen assaulting a mentally challenged man on false charges of kidnapping a minor at Kharewado in the port town. 

According to the police the accused persons formed an unlawful assembly and allegedly assaulted the mentally unsound person from Puducherry with blows, slaps, kicks, sticks causing him injury. The victim has been admitted to the Institute of Psychiatry and Human Behaviour (IPHB), Bambolim for treatment.

Whatever may be the reason it is improper for citizens to take law into their own hands. When people take the law into their own hands, they punish someone instead of waiting for the police or the legal system to take action. This is also referred to as street justice which is the punishment given by members of the public to people regarded as criminals or wrongdoers.

It is the duty of the State to ensure maintenance of law and order. Violence by any vigilante group also needs to be curbed. It is the job of the law enforcement agency to carry out a probe and take necessary action. Citizens can only prevent the alleged criminal from escaping from the scene before the police arrive. When people beat up a suspected criminal it can be a case of mistaken identity and an innocent person may have to bear the brunt as was the case in the incident reported at Vasco.

Adelmo Fernandes, Vasco

We are losing land to China

We have had Defence Minister Rajnath Singh talking at a function in Himachal Pradesh recently and saying aggressively that anyone having designs on Indian territory will be given a fitting answer. This is just plain sabre rattling as we have actually seen in the last few years how China has encroached on Indian territory and we have not been able to do anything.

Whenever this has happened Rajnath Singh, true to his master, Narendra Modi's reaction to embarrassing or sensitive issues disappears from the public eye for a few days to avoid facing the public ire or make a comment that may not go well with the masses. Large areas of land in Arunachal Pradesh, Ladakh and in other places of our orders with China, the latter nation has come in and squatted on our land. No fitting reply or bloody nose was given to China but our present government watched silently as the aggressor country made itself comfortable by building fortifications and consolidated its territorial gains. Even in Galwan, our government refused to name China as the first aggressor and to admit that they entered into Indian territory.

It is easy to expand on alternative ideas like one makes irresponsible comments during a discussion over a cup of tea. But such comments do not enhance the prestige of the chair of the Defence Minister of India that Rajnath Singh presently graces. Whether he is fit for sitting on that chair is another matter.

Srinivas Kamat, Alto St Cruz

PFI ban: A message to anti-national groups

The PFI and its associates or affiliates or fronts have been working covertly to increase the radicalisation of one community by promoting a sense of insecurity in the country, declared banned for 5 years under the stringent anti-terror law UAPA. It had been one of the most potent radical Islamic outfit and its members had been involved in numerous cases of violence, crime, unlawful activities and terrorism. 

It was a long-time demand by the people of this country, by all political parties, including the Opposition like CPI, CPM and Congress. The union government has taken appropriate action against communal PFI and its other affiliates who were aiding and abetting terrorist acts in the country.

SIMMI was banned and it came back as PFI. In the past, the Kerala HC had made an observation that PFI is 'Extremist Organisations', but not banned. The government should also make sure that they should not take another form under a different banner. 

KG Vilop, Chorao


Idhar Udhar