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All eyes on Obama

The editorial Yes it’s change, but no surprises (Our Take, January 21), rightly mentioned that Barack Obama faces a daunting task.

india Updated: Jan 22, 2009 21:19 IST

The editorial Yes it’s change, but no surprises (Our Take, January 21), rightly mentioned that Barack Obama faces a daunting task. He has to keep his promises on tax cuts, healthcare coverage and withdrawal of US troops from Iraq, among others. His efforts to tackle the present global recession and the threat from global terrorism will lift the otherwise sagging morale of the international community. His presidential years will witness the undoing of the controversial legacy of President Bush. The world awaits a change for the better during the tenure of the 44th US President.

Robi shom, via email

The game’s in the name

lalita panicker in Hits and Mrs (January 21), is right in saying that there is more to women’s empowerment and equality than just choosing a name. Some women choose to take whichever is the more famous name between that of her father and husband. Others use both, thus having their cake and eating it too. However, tradition and ancestral values demand that a married woman adopt her husband’s name. It will otherwise be a free-for-all situation in which the husbands also opt for their famous in-laws’ surnames and pass them on to their off-spring. Will some brave husbands please speak up for the beleaguered Mr Dutt?

Om Gupta, Delhi

The art of non-diplomacy

With reference to Prem Shankar Jha’s article Right honourable intentions (January 20), if diplomacy is about lying for your country, then British Foreign Secretary David Miliband is not a good diplomat. But he was honest in saying that resolving the Kashmir dispute would deny the extremists one of their main arguments behind the call to arms. Terrorism will not end with the resolution of the Kashmir problem, but it will certainly weaken the demand for azadi. How might it look for the Sangh parivar if someone says that the demolition of the Babri Masjid was one of the causes for the rise of terrorism in India?

N Kunju, Delhi

II

The immature handling of David Miliband’s visit to India by projecting the country in a poor light deserves to be condemned. While China is projecting itself as a superpower by hosting the grandest ever Olympics, our leaders are shamelessly showcasing their failures to the world and shedding crocodile tears over the misery of the masses, instead of trying to improve the lot of the aam adami.

SP Tripathy, Delhi

With friends like these...

Apropos of Pankaj Vohra’s SAD family planning has BJP in tears (Between us, January 19), the BJP’s dismal performance in the recent state polls has further shaken the morale of the party, and the RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal are proving to be a headache for it. Under such circumstances, it has no choice except to kowtow to regional parties, but this just might do more harm than good.

Gulshan Kumar, Delhi

Fiddling while people die

It is a matter of concern that India has such high infant and maternal mortality rates. But this is not surprising since successive governments at the Centre have only wasted their time and resources in haggling over Kashmir and other issues. The welfare of the millions toiling against the vagaries of nature seems to be the last thing on the minds of the authorities obsessed with modernisation. When will our progressive leaders wake up to the fact that the extrication of people from the vicious cycle of poverty and illiteracy needs to be prioritised?

Kajal Ghatterjee, Kolkata