Letters to the Editor: No excuse is too lame when it comes to buying more books
Sir — The standard bookshelf is organized by subject or author, but the latest social media trend is to colour code books. While the obsessive reader often does not care how books are arranged or indeed bothers to arrange books at all, there is one undoubted benefit to this: in order to fill in the missing colours, you will buy more books. This may be hard on the pocket but it is definitely both enriching for the mind as well as the beleaguered publishing industry. This is also a great way to turn books into items of home decor — no excuse is too lame when it comes to buying more books.
Sir — The decisive victory of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam in the local body elections is a recognition of the good work that the M.K. Stalin-led government has done since it came to power. Although the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the Bharatiya Janata Party tried to tarnish the image of the new government, people refused to fall into their trap. This is indicative of the sincerity with which the new government is trying to fulfil its electoral promises.
This should also impress upon the DMK rank and file the importance of working for the people. The chief minister, in turn, should not hesitate to take strict action against party members who do not fulfil their duties or are involved in corruption.
Tharcius S. Fernando,
Sir — The latest Global Hunger Index indicates that unless urgent measures are taken, the goal of ending world hunger by 2030 set by the United Nations will be unattainable. This report comes close on the heels of UN data showing that the number of undernourished people increased from 320 million to 2.4 billion — a third of the world population — in the last year.
Frequent extreme weather events associated with climate change have exacerbated food insecurity. Worse, dependence on a single type of crop — wheat or rice in India, which slipped to 101 out of 116 countries and is behind Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal — makes people doubly vulnerable. The longer climate justice is put on the back-burner, the longer people will continue to suffer. The right to adequate, nutritious food is a fundamental one. Rise in hunger levels thus is a violation of human rights.
Sir — India’s rank in the GHI is a matter of shame. India is said to have the highest child-wasting rate worldwide and fares poorly on other parameters like undernourishment, child-stunting and child mortality. Comparisons with neighbours like Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan are futile. India’s circumstances are different and its challenges greater. More than food security, food distribution is unequal and riddled with corruption. Equally important is a forthright assessment of the ‘Clean India’ campaign because without proper hygiene, even good nutrition will not help.
Sir — If India had made it to the top 50 countries in the GHI, would the government have still questioned its methodology? The government can only accept compliments and not its faults. If India is to improve, it has to learn to accept its shortcomings first.
Jang Bahadur Singh,
Sir — Navjot Singh Sidhu has withdrawn his resignation and decided to continue as the Punjab Congress chief. Yet, Sidhu’s dithering — both in politics and on the cricket ground — makes him an unreliable character. He is unlikely to benefit the Congress in any way. In fact, he may prove to be a stumbling block in the path to victory given his whims. He had behaved similarly in the Bharatiya Janata Party. Handing over command to a turncoat shows the complete bankruptcy of the Congress leadership.