Dhaka needs a new direction
With reference to Taslima Nasreen’s article Why I support Shahbagh (Focus, March 3), it is time Dhaka considered civil society activists’ demand to ban the Jamaat-e-Islami party. A political outfit whose members stand accused of atrocities committed during the 1971 Bangladesh war of independence and whose youth wing resorts to mindless violence has no place in a democratic nation. The Shahbagh protests indicate that the Bangladeshi youth will not let extremist elements hold democracy to ransom.
Manoj Parashar, via email
Capital punishment for 1971 war criminals will not help change the situation in Bangladesh. At this crucial juncture, the country needs laws that are not based on religion but on secular system.
M Ratan, via email
You win some, you lose some
With reference to the article The unknown knowns (Chanakya, March 3), finance minister P Chidambaram deserves to be complimented for presenting a reformist Budget that could to stimulate pro-market growth and at the same time champions the cause of the middle class and the poor.
The setting up of the Nirbhaya fund for the safety and empowerment of women and the increased allocation for education and skill development along with scholarships to students belonging to the marginalised sections are steps in the right direction. However, this year’s Budget falls flat on offering measures to curb inflationary pressures on the economy.
Also, it remains silent on how the government is going to fund various social welfare schemes. In short, it was a mixed bag of expectations and disappointments.
Abhijit Roy, Jamshedpur
By opting for a pragmatic Budget over a populist one, the finance minister has played a big political gamble. With global recession looming large and various credit rating agencies still not very hopeful about the outlook of our economy in the near future, this year’s Budget would be a real test for the UPA government and Chidambaram.
Sanjeev Jaggi, via email
Debt for those to follow
With reference to Manas Chakravarty’s article In the line of duties (Loose Canon, March 3), it is appalling that government after government has reduced the annual budget to a jugglery of statistics.
Nothing substantial is done to put the ailing economy back on track. Instead of eyeing inclusive growth, every year some or the other votebank is temporarily pacified. An all-women bank is unlikely to boost the economy. It’s time we as a nation realised that the vote-bank politics can cost our economy dearly and the next generation of voters will have to pay the debt.
Gulshan Kumar, via email
Just keep it nice and simple
In Beyond our budget (Red Herring, March 3) Indrajit Hazra rightly says that the Budget is an overrated exercise. Such an elaborate exercise proves costly to the state exchequer. We should have independent vigilance bodies to monitor the government’s financial activities and come up with a report at the end of the government’s term.
Kamala Kumari, via email
Words are all we have
With reference to Karan Thapar’s Mind your language (Sunday Sent-iments, March 3), it was hilarious and yet brain-wracking to read about new words that made it to the Washington Post’s annual competition. It is inspiring that at a time when the reading is on the decline; creatively inclined people across the world are ensuring that English remains a living and evolving language.
Ishmit Oberoi, Ludhiana
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