More gold, please
The Finance Minister P Chidambaram had announced in this year’s budget that women and men living abroad can bring gold worth Rs1,00,000 and Rs50,000 respectively. The move is welcome but is too little and half hearted, with gold costing about Rs3,000 per gram. The allowance should be enhanced to Rs3,00,000 for women and Rs1,50,000 for men, for practical purposes. Increasing this allowance will prevent corruption and harassment of Indians returning from abroad, as NRIs have contributed significantly to the Indian economy.
—Ramesh G Jethwani,
The new “normal”
The budget for 2013-14 is built on the assumption of a nominal GDP growth rate of 13.4 per cent with an underlying inflation of 6.5 per cent. Is it the ‘new normal for inflation’ against 5 per cent being held as the ‘tolerable’ rate for more than two decades? Would the RBI adopt this for its monetary policy in 2013-14? If it has a different take on the subject would it not result in a disconnect in the coordination of fiscal and monetary policies?
—A Seshan, via email
Delhi shamed, again
It is a matter of concern that New Delhi has truly become the new capital of rape in the world. It is outrageous that a seven-year-old girl became a rape victim within school premises. The fear of law is non existent in our judicial system.
—Deepak Chikramane, Mumbai
Security for the
Close on the heels of the brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old girl in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16, the news of sexual assault by an unidentified man inside a municipal school in the capital New Delhi on Thursday has sent a chill through our spines. Obviously, hundreds of people were up in arms on the street to demonstrate their ire. It is incredulous that a total stranger was able to gain access to the corridors of the school, commit his act and walk away freely. That such shameful acts continue to happen in the country despite deterrent punishments being put in place paints a sorry picture of our security systems. With little or no security in state run schools the dangers lurking are all too evident and there is an imperative need to protect the girl child. This incident brings to the mind the mind the saying ‘It takes a village to raise a child’.Where was the village that day?
—N J Ravi Chander, Bangalore
Rape is a menace
The Bhandara rape of three girls which shocked even home minister Shinde confirms the state of affairs with regard to women’s safety in India. The society, including the government, politicians and of course the general public have the moral responsibility of wiping out this menace. Stringent laws, a system to capture culprits, instant punishment and other measures will help tackle this menace, which seems to be ruining the very fabric of this nation.
—V S Ganeshan, via email
Arms and the US
This refers to Buddhi Kota Subbarao’s article about North Korea in DNA dated March 2. The article was interesting and the author has many valid points. USA and its allies have been threatening the economically weak North Korea for many years. Therefore, N Korea has no option but to arm itself with deadly weapons. When it arms itself, the same countries condemn North Korea for acquiring weapons. But USA keeps quiet when Israel and other allies acquire deadly weapons.
—Shishir Khandheria, via email
Tracking illegal immigrants
This is in reference to the news item ‘ Illegal immigrants to face tough time’ on March 2. These immigrants are openly and freely moving in and around Mira Road till the Virar belt. We have around four MLAs and two MPs in our area, for citizens’ safety. These representatives receive garlands and give big speeches at gatherings which are attended by many immigrants. In the Vasai-Virar region there are some 10 to 12 lakh illegal people whose whereabouts are not known to government agencies. We are grateful that Anil Kumbhare has now started a movement to find such persons, but he must also question those who provide shelter for such illegal immigrants.
—Marcus Dabre, Vasai
To err is Shinde
The home minister Shinde has to be corrected by Jaitley in the Rajya Sabha for disclosing the names of the rape victims. It creates a doubt about Shinde’s knowledge of the rules. His carelessness cannot be easily overlooked. The prime minister Manmohan Singh should note this and advice Shinde
accordingly so that he does not commit such serious mistakes in future and embarrass his government.
—V S Ganeshan
No land for Gandhi?
My humble request to Rahul Gandhi is to not visit my city. Close to 1,000 banners were put up on the W E highway yesterday. Not only that, the traffic was halted this morning for around 10 minutes and entire thing was chaotic. It would have been appropriate if the amount that was spent on the banners and the police machinery was used for Vidarbha’s farmers and the drought areas of Maharastra. This man who talks about the aam aadmi is least concerned about them.
Applause for Chidambaram
Finally, the much awaited P Chidambaram show in Parliament was enacted and there are mixed reactions. But one thing is clear: He maintained a good balancing act. Of course there are no populist measures but a fairly large section of economists and other experts feel Chidambaram has done a good job considering the present circumstances. The good thing is he has not succumbed to populists pressures and concentrated on fiscal measures to strengthen our economy. Let us see whether his efforts will bear fruit.
—VS Ganeshan, Bangalore