Implement anti-rape proposals
Without even attempting to go into the merits and demerits of the recommendations of the Justice JS Verma Committee, one can rest assured that they would also be interred under a heap of ‘political red-tape debris’, as has been the fate of many such proposals in the past. It would be naïve to presume that the government constituted the committee with any other motive except to pull the wool over the eyes of the agitated ‘aam janata’ after the Delhi gang rape incident. We, as a nation of the sages, have a propensity for sermonizing at the drop of the hat. One is tempted to ask what these leading lights of our judicial system did to redeem the situation while they occupied high offices. How often did they try to “think out of the box” in the interest of dispensing social justice and sexual autonomy for women. And if they did not do it then, why blame the present lot now?
—Chandramohan, by email
The recommendations of the Justice Verma Committee are not only good, they examine other areas like the negative influence of khap panchayats, the need to insulate law-enforcement agencies from influence and other offences like disrobing, and broaden the perspective of laws seeking to protect women from violence. It will now depend on the government to act speedily on these recommendations, to make the necessary amendments to laws and modification to policies to enable these recommendations to translate into effective mechanisms of protection for women facing violence.
—Suren Abreu, Mumbai
I am overwhelmed that the Justice Verma Committee has recommended the introduction of sex education in the school curriculum, something that many people have been pushing for. It is now for the HRD ministry to implement this as soon as possible, perhaps from the forthcoming academic year. This will be useful for the growing generation in the long run.
—PM Gopalan, by e-mail
Congratulations to Prema Jaykumar for topping the CA examination. To have achieved the top rank at a fiercely competitive professional examination, overcoming economic difficulties, is an incredible achievement. Her parents deserve praise for the sacrifices they made and their encouragement, supporting and providing their daughter and son all that they could afford so they could pursue their studies, instead of setting out to work to supplement the family income, something other parents in similar circumstances have done. The story was welcome respite from all the negative news against women from across the country. Prema’s spectacular achievement should inspire students, especially girls, to overcome the odds to realise their dreams. This will certainly help to change the attitude of parents towards the girl child. Such achievements must be highlighted, recognised and rewarded appropriately.
—EM Adithyan, Elangalloor
The proverb “Hard work never fails” has been proven correct once again. Overcoming difficult living conditions, Prema Jaykumar achieved her goal. We must felicitate her and the parents for their constant encouragement and effectively using his hard-earned money. Such achievements should be a lesson for others who simply blame the government, society and other factors for their failure in life.
—J Akshobhya, Mysore
Respect the Tricolour
It is heartening that the Maharashtra government has totally banned plastic national flags, heeding the pleas of environmentalists and keeping the dignity of the flag in mind. Every 26th January and 15th August it is saddening to see national flags dumped on the roadside or in dustbins. While the ban on plastic is a big step in the direction of raising ‘green’ consciousness, I hope it will also spur the people to be respectful of the flag and not dump it around. So let us try to also spread awareness about the importance of the Tricolour beyond commercial interests and mere emotional appeal.
—Probir Kumar Bose, New Panvel
Clip prices, corrupt
After he was anointed vice-president of the Congress party, Rahul Gandhi made a speech in which he attempted to strike an emotional chord, saying that his mother cried and told him that “power was poison”. But she probably forgot to tell him that power is sweet poison and is more intoxicating than any brand of liquor, that everyone craves for it and anyone who tastes it does not want to give it up. The real reason for her crying was more likely that the family enjoyed unlimited power without accountability, with the prime minister as their puppet, but now since their game plan cannot continue indefinitely she has been compelled to anoint her son. Instead of trying gimmicks, Rahul should get rid of the coterie and sycophants around him and clearly describe his plans to curb inflation and weed out corrupt oldies from the political arena, as they are the ones who are highly intoxicated with the power that his mother is talking about.
—Sudhakar GS, Mumbai