Price rise calls for reviewing the food minister’s credibility
With reference to the report PM asks plan panel to look into sugar price rise (January 8), Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has taken the right decision in asking the Planning Commission to formulate a strategy to check the spiralling sugar prices. It shows that the Prime Minister lacks confidence in Food Minister Sharad Pawar, who is shirking his responsibility by asking states to deal with the price rise on their own. The only solution that Pawar has come up with so far is that of importing foodstuff, which has worsened the problem. The government should evaluate Pawar’s credibility as food minister and take appropriate action against his failure to stabilise the prices of foodgrains.
Devendra Narain, via email
Peace in Kashmir is above all
The fidayeen attack in Srinagar by pro-Pakistan group Jamiat-ul-Mujahideen, in which two police personnel were killed and 20 others were injured, is shocking (Stick to our Kashmir plan, Our Take, January 8). The incident highlights that the Valley is far from being peaceful. So, it is wrong to state that the Centre should not let this attack interfere with its decision to scale down forces in the Valley. It’s not advisable to withdraw troops from Kashmir where problems of infiltration and cross-border terrorism are rampant. The government should instead deploy more personnel to Kashmir to ensure greater security in the state.
Syed Khaja, Delhi
Scaling down troops to further the peace process in the Valley is a welcome step which will instil confidence and hope in the people of Kashmir. But it shouldn’t come at the cost of the state’s security. Terrorists target Kashmir to hamper the peace process between India and Pakistan and attract attention. The government should certainly de-escalate security deployment in Kashmir, but without letting terrorists take advantage of it.
Kamal Ram Nath, via email
Misusing dowry laws
Preeti Singh makes a valid point in her article The deepest cut of all (January 8) about not letting parents off the hook for giving in to dowry demands. Under Sections 498A and 304B of the Indian Penal Code and the Dowry Prohibition Act, giving and abetting the giving of dowry are also crimes. It’s true that if a girl’s parents were also held accountable for ‘dowry harassment and/or dowry death of a married woman’, the number of false cases would plummet within no time.
Uma Challa, President, All India Forgotten Women’s Association, Delhi
There is no denying that many families are facing the wrath of false complaints being lodged against them under anti-dowry laws by girls and their parents. Marriages can be saved if disgruntled wives and their parents resolve their problems amicably with their spouses and their families, instead of misusing Section 498A each time there is a dispute.
Nitin Gupta, via email
Deal firmly with Australia
With reference to the editorial At your own peril in Oz (Our Take, January 7), the attacks on Indian students in Australia seem to be on the rise. It clearly suggests the presence of organised criminal groups in Australia, which are targeting Indians and want to scare them off. As is evident, the Indian government is yet to take up the issue strongly with the Australian government. With about three reported attacks in just two weeks of 2010, it is important that the Centre acknowledges the seriousness of the issue and demands an explanation from Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and his administration.
Arvind Bhatia, via email