Monday, 30th October 2017

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Great loss

There is speculation that information on social media about rare wildlife may have drawn the poachers’ attention to the animals

  • Published 18.03.20, 12:18 AM
  • Updated 18.03.20, 12:18 AM
  • 3 mins read
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Kenya’s only white female giraffe and its seven-month-old calf were allegedly killed by poachers Twitter/@CBSNews

Sir — It is heartbreaking that Kenya’s only white female giraffe and its seven-month-old calf were allegedly killed by poachers. Their bodies were found in a skeletal state last week. There is speculation that information on social media about rare wildlife, perhaps to raise awareness about conservation, may have drawn the poachers’ attention to the animals. This is a pity, because wildlife poaching in Kenya has reportedly dropped by 90 per cent in the past six years, mostly owing to the efforts of local communities. Strict supervision and extensive sensitization go a long way in protection.

Amrita Guha,
Calcutta

Game of power

Sir — The editorial, “Brought down” (March 12), rightly observes that the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, has an inherent disregard for the law. After the state administration put up hoardings with the photographs, names and addresses of 53 people accused of vandalism during the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act last December at several important junctions in Lucknow, the Allahabad High Court took suo motu cognizance of the case and directed that these hoardings be removed and the court be intimated. There was, of course, no concrete evidence against the accused, and the court naturally considered it a violation of the right to privacy. But the state government decided to appeal to the Supreme Court against the high court order.

While the apex court has referred the case to a larger bench, it has not stayed the high court order. Yet the state government is adamant on defying it. Should this not be considered contempt of court? Further, the state cabinet has now approved an ordinance that seeks to recover damages from the so-called rioters.

In the meantime, a Samajwadi Party leader had put up a banner with the photographs of the former Bharatiya Janata Party leader, Kuldeep Singh Sengar, and the former Union minister of state, Swami Chinmayanand, next to one of the government’s hoardings as retaliation. But this time, the police were quick to remove it. This exposes the BJP’s propensity to be unfair and exercise muscle power.

Akashdeep Sarkar,
New Delhi

Sir — The action taken by the police in Uttar Pradesh, reportedly under the direction of the chief minister, of putting up hoardings with photographs and addresses of those accused of damaging property during the anti-CAA protests is bizarre and excessive. Naming and shaming individuals and marking them out as public enemies without even a trial amount to a travesty of the law. Resorting to such ‘street justice’ methods, that too by those meant to maintain law and order, has been rightly denounced by the Allahabad High Court.

The verdict has exposed the fact that the government has neither the knowledge of the citizens’ right to privacy nor any respect for the Constitution. The Supreme Court’s decision to decline to stay the high court order has raised the question whether Yogi Adityanath — who has been accused of several crimes in the past — is at all familiar with the tenets of governance.

S.S. Paul,
Nadia

Sir — Of late, the absence of law and order seems to have become the norm across the country. But Uttar Pradesh appears to lead all other states in this respect. Yogi Adityanath  has once again taken the law into his hands. On earlier occasions, he has openly defied the law, with the false encounter killings in his state. This time, he has resorted to depriving the people of their fundamental right to privacy, enshrined in the Constitution that he had taken an oath to protect.

Adityanath seems to be bent on recovering the losses incurred during the violence that followed the protests last year. One wonders if he has actually calculated if the accused have property which, when auctioned, will make up for the cost of the damage. The prime minister should seriously consider whether such a person can be allowed to continue as chief minister of any state in a democratic nation. Adityanath should be tried in court for all his excesses.

Asit Kumar Mitra,
Calcutta

Sir — The people whose details are up on the hoardings in Uttar Pradesh have not even been convicted.

The state government continues to make such transgressions time and again. The media and leaders of Opposition parties should raise their voices against this and stand up for the rights of ordinary citizens.

Mahmudul Hasan,
Gorakhpur