Our leadership should realign its priorities
Samar Halarnkar’s article Love the drought (Maha Bharat, August 24) was bang on target. We need to look at droughts as opportunities to learn and manage better in the coming years. The writer is right about the present Agriculture Minister being unfit for the job. There’s only cricket and Maharashtra on his agenda. The Agriculture Minister should pay heed to a number of brilliant studies on the subject, aided by statistics put together by those more diligent than him. In fact, the PM should have accorded greater priority and resources to drought management than the Universal Identity card project. Now, it might be too late.
R Swarnalatha, Delhi
Out of touch with reality
Chetan Bhagat in his article In defence of the PM (Reality Show, August 25) has missed crucial points, especially about foreign relations and our equation with Pakistan. The writer should use a map to mark all our neighbouring countries and then study their foreign policies, defence budgets and relations with India. He might particularly want to pay attention to the giant landmass above us that’s hankering after Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim. People who live far from reality, comfortably wrapped in the blanket of security provided by our defence forces, can ill-afford to make absolute statements and should let experts do their jobs.
G Chandana, via email
Chetan Bhagat’s analysis was shocking and reflected the writer’s shallow thinking. I wonder why this puerile piece found a place in an esteemed newspaper like Hindustan Times. My sincere advice to Bhagat is to stick to fiction writing. Commenting on matters concerning foreign policy and national security amounts to nothing more than the ‘fourth mistake’ of his life.
Shanti Prakash Karir, via email
Towards a broader foreign policy
The editorial The sinking feeling (Our Take, August 26) has rightly pointed out that only a strong government and a stronger Opposition can steer national progress. The BJP’s downfall is a big blow for Indian politics. An RSS takeover of the BJP is not a solution to the problem. It will lead to the Talibanisation of India.
Goutam Goswami, Dhanbad
Green future, clean future
The concerns raised in the editorial There is a hole in our bucket (Our Take, August 24) were alarming. Commercialisation of the environment can prove fatal and we must realise that there are limits to what money can buy. Sustainable development is feasible only if demands are lowered because our natural resources can’t offer an unlimited supply. Only if we realise this, can we establish a foothold in the international community so that we aren’t forced to live under pressure from developed countries.
Siddharth Bhattacharya, Delhi
No substitute for better planning
This has reference to the report Parched earth will be election battlefield (August 24). Apart from a cosmetic change in party manifestos, the real fallout of a long dry spell would range from price rise to a scarcity of foodgrains. Increasing the minimum support price will not fetch rains, and this short-term measure will only push foodgrain prices beyond the common man’s purchasing power. Instead, we need longer-term measures like the construction of canals, linking of all major rivers, facilities for digging bore wells etc which will benefit farmers.
Deepak Chikramane, via email