Take away these growing pains
With reference to Sanchita Sharma's article Precocious puberty (The Big Story, April 14), early puberty among boys and girls is a cause for grave concern. It is appalling that the toxic combination of exposure to pesticides, their by-products and easy access to adult content, both online and in popular media, are not letting children develop in a natural way. We need a paradigm shift in food policies and practices that can ensure the availability of pesticide-free food. It's high time the government stepped in to stop this slow poisoning of generations of people. There's no doubt that it is the parents' duty to keep a tab on their children's exposure to sex and violence on television but the media too has a social responsibility. I strongly feel that the media must self-regulate and ensure that at least programmes shown during prime time are free of adult content.
Sarwan Kumar, Panchkula
A fractured funny bone
With reference to the article A touch of crass (Chanakya, April 14), it is sad that the current crop of politicians not only lacks a sense of humour but they also end up offending people when they try their hand at being funny. It seems that gone are the days when politicians like Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Somnath Chatterjee used to crack jokes to make people feel at ease. One cannot forget Vajpayee's famous retort in Parliament to his supporters, "Atal toh hoon lekin bhooliye mat, Bihari bhi hoon." His combination of humour and wit must inspire younger politicians to spice up their speeches, but they must do this with caution lest they be caught on the wrong foot.
Gulshan Kumar, via email
Maharashtra deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar's disgraceful remarks about 'peeing' in empty dams and on load-shedding were not a case of a joke gone bad. It was a disgusting manifestation of the arrogance of power. He cannot be allowed to get away with a mere apology after insulting a drought-hit farmer who was sitting on a 55-day hunger strike. Pawar has no moral right to continue in office. If the NCP wants to save its face, it must suspend Pawar at the earliest instead of defending his insensitive barbs.
Bhagwan Thadani, Mumbai
Regal era of movie watching
Indrajit Hazra's article My matinee idol (Red Herring, April 14) reminds me of days when I used to watch films in single screen movie theatres like Regal Cinema and Golcha Cinema in Delhi. Those days, one could step out of these theatres to buy snacks and bring them in to eat. But over the last few years, the whole experience of watching films has undergone a sea-change. Nowadays, not only are tickets and eatables expensive but the films that are made have also lost their innocence.
Harshan Nair, via email
She was a force to reckon with
With reference to Karan Thapar's article She just got on with it (Sunday Sentiments, April 14), Margaret Thatcher, Britain's longest serving prime minister of the 20th century, was no doubt an awe-inspiring figure. Her uncompromising style of politics helped her fight to preserve Britain's right over the Falkland Islands. Thatcher and her legacy will be remembered for centuries.
Kavya, via email
Bengal's become a battleground
With reference to Manas Chakravarty's article Hammer and Bongs (Loose Canon, April 14), it's a matter of shame that political parties have reduced West Bengal to a battleground. It is time chief minister Mamata Banerjee delivered on her promise of poriborton and checked the deteriorating law and order situation in the state.
Rajkumar Kapoor, via email
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