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regular-article-logo Friday, 31 May 2024

Letters to the Editor: Fortune tellers from Tamil Nadu arrested for caging parrots

Readers write in from Calcutta, Nadia, South 24 Parganas, Visakhapatnam, Hooghly and Cooch Behar

The Editorial Board Published 13.04.24, 06:21 AM
Representational image.

Representational image. File Photo

Wrong card

Sir — Bird and animal ‘oracles’ are popular all over India. But their efficacy might now be in doubt. Two fortune-tellers from Tamil Nadu landed in hot water recently when their parrots predicted a victory for the Pattali Makkal Katchi candidate from the local constituency in the Lok Sabha elections. Whether or not the parrots are right about the poll results, they clearly were not able to foretell the misfortune that would soon befall their owners. The two owners were arrested — they have now been released — for keeping the parakeets in captivity after a video of the PMK candidate’s fortune-telling went viral.

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Subhajit Kundu, Calcutta

Taken to task

Sir — The Supreme Court’s refusal to accept the “unconditional apology” tendered by Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna, the founders of Patanjali Ayurved, is justified (“SC to Ramdev: You suffer”, April 11). It is well-known that Ramdev is close to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. The apex court has rightly slammed the BJP government in Uttarakhand for its failure to take action against Patanjali and its subsidiary, Divya Pharmacy, despite numerous complaints of violation of the Drugs and Magic Remedies (Objectionable Advertisements) Act. In matters related to healthcare, the government’s favouritism can be harmful to the general public. Patanjali deserves stringent punishment.

S.S. Paul, Nadia

Sir — The second apology affidavit filed by the managing director of Patanjali Ayurved, Acharya Balkrishna, and the yoga guru, Ramdev, in the contempt proceedings against the company regarding misleading advertisements was rightly rejected by the Supreme Court. The court came down heavily on Ramdev and Balkrishna as well as criticised the drug licensing officials of Uttarakhand for failing to take action against such false advertising. It is hoped that the apex court will punish both the company and the authorities for failing to protect the interests of thousands of patients who relied upon Patanjali’s medicines.

D.P. Bhattacharya, South 24 Parganas

Sir — The apex court’s refusal to accept the second formal apology submitted by the founders of Patanjali Ayurved is a fitting retort to Ramdev’s arrogant behaviour evident in his numerous appearances on television shows. Such arrogance also led him to believe that he could avoid attending the court hearings and keep promoting the supposed cure for Covid-19, Coronil, with impunity. The apex court has rightly taken a strict approach and asked both Ramdev and Acharya Balkrishna to be prepared to face action.

K. Nehru Patnaik, Visakhapatnam

Sir — The criticism of Patanjali Ayurved and its founders by the Supreme Court for the dissemination of misleading advertisements is justified. The pe­tition filed by the Indian Medical Association had targeted the promotion of an ayurvedic product as an effective cure for Covid-19 in opposition to allopathic medicine. The court’s decision is welcome. The consumption of an unverified ayurvedic preparation put lives at risk during the pandemic. The court also slammed the drug licensing officials for being in cahoots with Patanjali.

M.N. Gupta, Hooghly

For harmony

Sir — The decision of the Nicolas Memorial CSI church in Malappuram, Kerala, to allow thousands of Muslims to conduct their Eid prayers on its ground, is heartwarming and praiseworthy (“Kerala church opens gates for Eid prayers”, April 11). Kerala is known for its interfaith harmony. This instance shows its religious syncretism at a time when the purveyors of Hindutva demonise minority communities for political gain.

Samir Das, Cooch Behar

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