Sir — Travelling may be one of the best ways of escaping the monotony of life. But finding the perfect travel companion can be difficult. Is it any wonder then that solo vacations are on the rise? Solo trips have many benefits — for instance, it is easier to get reservations according to one’s own choice and budget. Travelling by oneself can also be liberating. We can explore new places or just relax without feeling the obligation to engage with others. While the pandemic has stirred the travel bug in many of us, it is women who seem to be most keen on travelling solo. A recent survey indicated that almost 25 per cent of Indian women are planning to make solo trips this year. Unfortunately, this can be challenging for women owing to safety concerns in most parts of the world.
Ayushi Mudaliar, Pune
Cause for concern
Sir — The Chief Justice of India, N.V. Ramana, is right in expressing concern about the concerted campaigns run on television and social media and in saying that these are detrimental to the health of judicial independence and democracy (“CJI slams ‘kangaroo courts’ on TV, social media”, July 24). High-decibel, agenda-driven media trials lack sound reasoning. The CJI asserted that media trials cannot be the guiding factor in deciding cases. All the courts must heed this. While print media still retains a certain degree of accountability, television media has displayed partisanship by blatantly siding with the ruling regime. This is disconcerting. The media must not lose the ability to speak truth to power.
G. David Milton, Maruthancode, Tamil Nadu
Sir — The CJI’s concerns about the increasing number of “kangaroo courts” in the media are justified. They are interfering with the delivery of justice in the country. For example, in the aftermath of the death of the actor, Sushant Singh Rajput, several television channels named and shamed people they assumed to be the culprits and even concluded the cause of death prior to investigation. This brought the media censure from the Bombay High Court. It is the duty of the media to remain objective. The judiciary must intervene before it is too late.
Khokan Das, Calcutta
Sir — N.V. Ramana has underlined the perils of TV debates where inexperienced commentators and politicians as well as biased journalists pass judgments on cases that are sub judice. The court should be careful of such media trials and punish those channels and publications that are guilty of trying to influence public opinion. People often judge on the basis of sentiments and not laws. This is why we have the judiciary. No one should take the law into their hands.
Kingshuk Som, Calcutta
Sir — The Olympic gold medallist, Neeraj Chopra, should be congratulated for scripting yet another historic win by bagging a silver medal in javelin throw at the World Athletics Championships. Chopra is the second Indian — Anju Bobby George won bronze in long jump in 2003 — and the first male track and field athlete from the country to win at this competition with an 88.13-metre throw.
While Anderson Peters of Grenada won the gold medal, the Czech player, Jakub Vadlejch, secured the bronze with an 88.09-metre throw. Rohit Yadav, another Indian in the fray, finished tenth.
With the latest victory, Chopra has also become the first athlete to win big at the Olympics and the WAC within a year since 2009. Extreme discipline and humility have propelled him towards such career milestones.
Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee, Faridabad
Sir — Neeraj Chopra found himself in a sticky situation at the final event of the WAC after registering a foul throw in his first attempt. However, he bounced back in the fourth attempt and sealed a second place on the podium for himself. After the victory, he said that it was a learning experience for him and promised to further hone his craft (“Neeraj digs deep to find the right throw”, July 25). This shows courage and integrity, which are the hallmarks of good athletes.
Sujan Dhali, Malda
Sir — Dinesh Gunawardena, a veteran Sri Lankan politician and a loyalist of the ousted Rajapaksa clan, was recently appointed the prime minister of the country by the president, Ranil Wickremesinghe. The latter seems to be acting as per the wishes of the Rajapaksas. A closer look at the president’s 18-member cabinet — it has several members of the erstwhile Gotabaya Rajapaksaled government — justifies this apprehension.
Moreover, a day after Wickremesinghe was sworn in, Sri Lankan security forces cracked down on those protesting against the unprecedented economic crisis (“Crackdown on Lanka protest site”, July 23). This fuels fears that the new president is following in the footsteps of his predecessor. Wickremesinghe must pay heed to the people’s demands.
Tharcius S. Fernando, Chennai
Sir — It is not surprising to learn that the average age of Hollywood’s leading men is 46.8 years and that of women is 41.8 years (“Silver-hair silver screen bares ‘creative rut’”, July 25). Film studios often rely on the old guard — stars who have proven themselves at the box office — to maximise profits. It is important to note that with the advent of anti-ageing technology, looking younger on the screen is not difficult. Such technology was extensively used in the film, The Irishman, in which both Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, who are 78 and 82, respectively, played younger versions of themselves. This robs young actors from making their mark.
Dyutiman Bhattacharya, Calcutta
Sir — Actors are often seen romancing actresses half their age. Perhaps older actresses should be cast opposite younger actors to reverse this trend.
Swati Singh, Mumbai