With reference to the editorial Putting India back on track (Our Take, January 11), it is heartening to see that the government gave populist trends a break and hiked the fares of the Indian Railways for the first time in 10 years. Over the years, the rail budget has been used to play parochial politics. While Lalu Prasad announced new trains to Patna during his tenure as railway minister, Mamata Banerjee announced rail links to Nandigram and Furfura Sharief in Hooghly district during hers. The recent hike in railway fares is very much needed to bring the ailing Indian Railways back on track. Besides, technological upgradation of the anti-collision system, this increase in fares should be accompanied by better facilities like the availability of hygienic food on railway platforms and better safety and security for passengers.
Mukul Kumar, via email
A huge blow to the peace process
The barbaric killing of two Indian soldiers in Kashmir by Pakistani troops is not only a huge blow to the ongoing peace talks between the two nations but also a violation of the Geneva Convention (Use the carrot and the stick, Our Take, January 10). The incident must force New Delhi to send a strong message to Islamabad that its double standards vis-à-vis India are not acceptable. Several media reports have indicated that the Pakistani State provides military and financial assistance to violent non-State actors and it’s high time we called Pakistan’s bluff.
Mathew Oommen, Pune
India must realise that bilateral talks with Pakistan are futile. The way Pakistan has reacted to the beheading incident shows that it is least interested in resolving outstanding issues.
Zulfikhar Akram, Bangalore