Sir — As in December 6, 1992, when he tamely assented to L.K. Advani’s telephonic request to hold back his resignation while kar sevaks finished bringing down the Babri Masjid, Kalyan Singh once again plays opportunist to the full hilt (“Kalyan offers to expose Advani”, July 23). The Dalit leader of Uttar Pradesh is trying to nail Advani with the information he had been privy to as chief minister of the state. Yet Singh had not volunteered to disclose these crucial facts for seven-long years while India went through several upheavals and inquiries following that crucial day in 1992. Why' Because it suited Singh. If he now wishes to play hero exposing the deputy prime minister, it is because in the past few months, his negotiations with the Bharatiya Janata Party for a political vantage point has broken down. But perhaps Kalyan Singh should desist from the blackmail. Will he be able to answer why he meekly kept Advani’s request when the vandals played havoc in his state'
G. Tripathy, Calcutta
Sir — No matter how much Tony Blair tries to pass the buck, the tragic death of David Kelly will continue to plague his government. Kelly’s death exposes the hypocrisy of the British and American governments like never before. That the allies in the war were going for a wildgoose chase in Iraq were evident much before the war started. The theory on the presence of weapons of mass destruction was hotly contested by the weapons inspectors themselves. Besides, 9/11 had already demonstrated that the threat to the world emanated not from Iraq but from Pakistan, the United States of America’s chief ally in the war against terrorism. But the powers turned a blind eye to all this. Driven by the greed for oil, both the United Kingdom and the US conspired to conquer Iraq. Spreading lies and falsifying documents were the first steps in this sinister design.
Shivaji K. Moitra, Kharagpur
Sir — The truth cannot be suppressed for a long time. David Kelly’s death will probably hasten its discovery (“Hype or hunt for truth: BBC in crises”, July 21). There is little doubt that Kelly had been made the scapegoat by his own government, desperately trying to deflect attention from its lies. He was subjected to immense pressure and threatened with the official secret act. The first casualty in the war against Iraq has been the Blair government. The dirty politics will surely catch up with the US sooner or later. And it won’t be nondescript faces like Kelly’s that will be revealed in the end.
S.A. Rahman Barkati, Calcutta
Sir — With reference to the report, “Abortion miscarries” (July 14), we would like to emphasize that the explanation of the incident regarding the case of Pinky Mishra, wife of Shankar Mishra, was not only incorrect but misleading too. Pinky Mishra came to Parivar Seva clinic at Barasat on May5, for medical termination of pregnancy. The client has a history of two earlier MTPs and has two living children. She was examined at our clinic at Barasat where she was found to be six weeks’ pregnant. The informed consent of the client was taken after counselling her on the fact that MTP can sometimes cause incomplete evacuation or even failure, leading to continuation of pregnancy. MTP was attempted on May 8, and laproscopic tubectomy was done.
After MTP using suction evacuation, product of conception was not found (which can happen in early weeks of pregnancy) and Pinky Mishra was categorically asked to come for follow up after two weeks. The client came on May 22, when clinical assessment showed bulky uterus. A repeat procedure was done on the same day with the client’s consent, but nothing could be aspirated. Therefore, she was advised ultrasonographic study of the uterus to find out the problem, and asked to report back to the clinic with the report for further management.
The client neither came back to the clinic nor informed us about the report. Had she come back, complete evacuation could have been done under ultrasonographic guidance free of charge. This is even possible now if she comes back immediately, as MTP is legal upto 20 weeks of pregnancy.
In medical practice, failure does take place and in MTP, which is blind procedure, the chances are more (about 2 per cent). Therefore, Pinky Mishra was asked for follow up examination and further investigation. The failures of MTP in the case was possibly due to either implantation of fertilized egg high up at one side of the uterine cavity or congenital anomaly of the uterus (septed uterus) where pregnancy has occurred on one side which could not have been approached by the blind technique of suction evacuation for MTP.
Soma Chakraborty, project executive, Parivar Seva Sanstha, Calcutta
Bappa Majumdar replies:
While, the Parivar Seva Sanstha representative points out that “ MTP can sometimes cause failure leading to continuation of pregnancy”, she does not explain why Pinky Mishra and her husband were never told by the clinic that the evacuation process done on her had failed. Instead, they were issued a certificate on May 22 stating that “laproscopic ligation with MTP done on May 8”, which according to legal experts and leading gynaecologists of the city is misleading and amounts to suppression of facts. Experts say that the word “done” clearly means that the MTP has been “successful”, or else the words “not done” would have been mentioned.
Contrary to allegations that the couple did not contact the clinic after finding out that she was still pregnant after May 22, Pinky Mishra did go to the clinic with the ultrasonography report and she has also submitted a copy of a letter written to Marie Stopes in court, proving that she did apprise the authorities about her experience at the Barasat branch. Last but not the least, the clinic can perhaps explain in court why MTP under “suction evacuation” method was tried a second time when it failed in the first place on May 8.