The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Letters to Editor

Serving without love

Sir — One feels proud that Indian medicos are saving lives, especially of those living abroad who now prefer Indian hospitals to ones in their own countries (“UK patient sings praise of Indian cure”, July 10). But it is equally disheartening to see how many people in India, particularly the poor, are dying everyday due to lack of proper treatment. Very few medical institutions have well-trained doctors, well-maintained medical equipment and clean, sanitary conditions. Only the rich get to enjoy the services of the premier medical institutions. The poor, who cannot pay for their healthcare, are left to perish. Is it worth having outsiders sing praise about the medical system when Indians themselves are cursing it' A major chunk of India’s population lives below the poverty line. We should work towards bettering the dismal condition of government hospitals, which serve these people, instead of deriving comfort from foreigners’ preferences for cheap treatment here.

Yours faithfully,
Payel Ghosh, Calcutta

Unfair trial

Sir — No one will disagree with Saddam Hussein about George W. Bush’s “criminality” (“Defiant Saddam says in court real criminal is Bush”, July 2). But he should have added Tony Blair to his list. The trial of Saddam, going on under the supervision of the puppet government in Iraq, is a theatre which has its director sitting in the White House. It was on the instructions of this director that America and Britain fought their war against terrorism in Iraq despite there being no evidence to link the September attacks with Saddam or his alleged weapons of mass destruction. Instead of apologizing for their misdeeds, both Bush and Blair have tried to defend their actions.

If Iraq has been handed over to a stooge administration two days before the scheduled date, it is because both these leaders fear for their office. However, this is unlikely to be of much help. The Labour Party is doing disastrously in Britain and in the United States of America, the supreme court has put paid to Bush’s war policy by ruling that terror suspects in the US can use the American judicial system to challenge their confinement. Saddam has rightly observed about Bush and Blair and their associates in Iraq, “How can you defend these dogs'”

Yours faithfully,
Jang Bahadur Singh, Jamshedpur

Sir — The US decision to hand over Saddam Hussein to the interim government installed in Iraq appears to be flawed. The trial of the former Iraq president is unlikely to be fair unless it is conducted by a third party. Besides, if Saddam is tried for injustice and cruelty, shouldn’t George Bush also be tried for the inhuman treatment meted out to the Iraqi prisoners'

Yours faithfully,
R. Sekar, Angul

Sir — The US had illegally entered Iraq. Which means, the trial of Saddam Hussein is illegal as the interim government itself cannot be called legal. Moreover, the trial is a farce. The pet poodles of the US will see to it that the death penalty is awarded to Saddam.

Yours faithfully,
S. Tarsheed Ali, Calcutta

Sir — Both the US and Britain should be tried for their invasion of Iraq. The sudden transfer of power by the US to Iraq could be seen as evidence to support the fact that the powers had illegally occupied Iraq. The clearance certificate given by Hans Blix, the chief weapons inspector in Iraq, stating that not a single warhead of objectionable weapons had been found in Iraq, can be used to frame charges of war crime and genocide against the US and Britain. Despite there being no proof to show Iraq’s involvement in the World Trade Center attack, the US had gone against the UN mandate to enter Iraq. The invasion has destroyed cities, killed Iraqi women, men and children and wrought destruction in clear violation of all international laws relating to war and peace. All this can be held against the invading forces. Let the international community decide who is the real war criminal.

Yours faithfully,
Asoka Kumar Addya, Calcutta

Road rage

Sir — Only a few months ago, Manish Mishra, the grand-nephew of former prime minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, had been killed when he protested against the harassment of a few college girls inside the train he was travelling in. And now another life has been lost to protect a woman’s dignity (“Bus brutes tease wife, kill husband”, June 28). Whether in Delhi or Calcutta, commuters, particularly women, often have to face such dangerous situations. Unless there is a change in the mindset that views women as sex objects, there can be no safety for them. Introduction of rigid laws might act as a deterrent, but these are no cure. We have to engage more seriously with a problem that is complicated by the entertainment industry’s aim of making quick money.

Yours faithfully,
Arvind K. Pandey, Allahabad

Sir — We have been reading a lot on the recent upsurge of violence against women, but we continue to miss the vital points. As in Bapi Sen’s case, why is society not vocal against those who are trying to save his murderers' For by trying to plead for a lesser sentence for the errant constables, they are also supporting crime against women — the reason behind the murder. The woman who Sen had tried to rescue has been criticized for not coming forward to acknowledge her debt. But can she be really blamed for remaining in the shadows in a perverted society like ours' We may lack the courage to protect women from molestors on the road, but we never shrink away from harassing them.

Yours faithfully,
S. Ram, Kanpur

Parting shot

Sir — The Telegraph covered the Harsud story as a failure on the part of Medha Patkar to show solidarity with the displaced people (“Where’s Medha, ask Harsud oustees”, July 8). No effort was made to seek the accountability of the state government of Madhya Pradesh that is responsible for the rehabilitation and resettlement of the oustees. Why is the Supreme Court’s ruling on Narmada — where it reportedly says that for an increase in dam height, there should be resettlement before further construction — not being talked about' Those struggling for the people in Narmada have not forgotten the oustees in Harsud, but the state government certainly has. And the media appears to be forgetting that. The article should have been titled “Where is the state government of MP'”

Yours faithfully,
Vaijayanti Gupta, Rockville, US

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