Sir — Politicians all over the world are often in the news for their sartorial choices. The expensive monogrammed suit once donned by the Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, had grabbed headlines. But a recent decision of the United States Senate allowing casual clothing in the House is definitely a first. This decision came after a request from a new senator, John Fetterman, to allow him to wear hoodies to work. Clothes have little to do with the work one does — let us hope the example set up by Fetterman is emulated by more politicians and the focus of politics returns to important issues.
Anjali Dubey, Calcutta
Sir — Kannur University in Kerala has decided to offer a helping hand to students from Manipur whose education has been affected by the ongoing violence in the state (“Kerala refuge for Kuki students”, Sept 21). The university has received applications from over 70 students — including 23 from the Kuki community who have already reached Kannur — interested in continuing their education in Kerala. The university has also relaxed the admission requirement of submitting educational certificates, allowing the students time till their courses are completed.
S.S. Paul, Nadia
Sir — It was heartening to read that students whose academic careers have been disrupted by the violence in Manipur have been given a chance to continue their studies in Kerala. The students got to know about the vacancies available at Kannur University from Malayali teachers working in Manipur after the Kuki Students’ Organisation failed to get any response from the University Grants Commission. Kerala has set a stellar example of national integrity and brotherhood.
Ananda Dulal Ghosh, Howrah
Sir — How long can we keep silent while people continue to lose their lives to keep our surroundings clean? Three workers — Rajab Sheikh, Mahidul Sheikh and Manirul Islam — were killed after inhaling toxic fumes while trying to repair a septic tank in a house in Murshidabad (“3 workers die of septic tank ‘fumes’”, Sept 19). The authorities should strictly provide supplemental gear to manual scavengers.
Sujit De, Calcutta
Sir — Manual scavenging continues to be an inhuman menace afflicting India. Recently, three people in Murshidabad lost their lives while working inside a septic tank. Although the latest government data declare that 665 out of 766 districts are free of manual scavenging, this does not reflect ground realities. The apathy of both the state and the Centre is concerning. The process of cleaning septic tanks should be mechanised.
Jayanta Datta, Hooghly
Sir — Almost 600 days after Russia invaded Ukraine, the fault lines between the West and Russia and its allies seem more pronounced. Moscow’s justification for the invasion — protecting itself against the West — seems even hollower now that Finland has joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. The war has affected the free movement of essential goods and fuel to poor countries. The United Nations Security Council’s warning to Russia to end the war immediately is justified (“Council to Russia: Stop war”, Sept 21).
Khokan Das, Calcutta
Sir — The recent UN General Assembly meeting was overshadowed by the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war. The conflict has not only created a humanitarian crisis but also increased the volatility of the global supply chain.
M. Jeyaram, Sholavandan, Tamil Nadu