Happily even after
Sir — Divorces are never a happy thing. But separations between celebrities — the custody battle between Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman and the post-divorce fight between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard are instances — turn into especially ugly affairs by dint of the media’s obsession with their personal lives. Significantly, speculative narratives arising from such incidents often paint the woman in a bad light. Take, for example, the recent announcement of divorce between Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas. The tabloids’ disproportionate focus on Turner being an absent mother and nightclub frequenter shows how society still burdens women with the role of the archetypal mother. Perhaps this is why women should break the stigma around separation by embracing the idea of ‘happily divorced’.
Sagar Chaudhary, Noida
Sir — It is unfortunate that more than 2,100 people have been killed after a powerful earthquake of 6.8 magnitude rocked Morocco on Friday (“Rescuers reach remote areas as Morocco toll crosses 2,000”, Sept 11). The epicentre of the quake, the Atlas Mountains, and the adjoining cities have witnessed frantic efforts to locate survivors in the past three days. Disconcertingly, the historic Koutoubia mosque, built in the 12th century and situated at the heart of Marrakesh, has been severely damaged.
This is one of the worst natural disasters to hit the African country. World leaders should join ranks to ensure a smooth supply of aid to the survivors and provide all possible assistance to the rescue operations. Crisis-responsive teams like the Red Cross should also be allowed to discharge their responsibilities effectively.
Kirti Wadhawan, Kanpur
Sir — While world leaders were preoccupied with the razzmatazz of the G20 Summit, Morocco was ravaged by one of the most deadly tremors in decades. The natural disaster should have prompted a more proactive response from the international community.
It must be noted that this is the second time that a powerful earthquake has struck in the late hours of night, after the twin quakes in Turkey in February this year, leading to panic and confusion which significantly hindered rescue operations. The G20 and the rest of the world should come together to extend a helping hand to the Moroccans.
K. Nehru Patnaik, Visakhapatnam
Sir — In the recent bypolls to the seven assembly seats in six states, the Bharatiya Janata Party was able to secure three victories while the United Democratic Front, the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, the Trinamul Congress and the Samajwadi Party grabbed one seat each in these respective states. By-elections are reflective of the mood of the electorate. The saffron party lost the Ghosi seat in Uttar Pradesh in spite of being in power in the state. This comes as a severe jolt to the ruling dispensation. It would have been disappointing had the Trinamul Congress lost the Dhupguri seat in West Bengal given its undisputed status.
Even though INDIA managed to score significant victories, the fact that the Opposition parties fought against each other in the state contests can pose a
formidable threat to their unity.
K.V. Seetharamaiah, Bengaluru
Sir — If the results of the recent bypolls in the six states are an indication, INDIA has passed the litmus test of unity. This will have a bearing on the upcoming assembly elections in five states.
However, the victory against the BJP should not be a reason for any complacency given the fact that the Opposition has not been able to counter the mass appeal of the prime minister, Narendra Modi. Moreover, the INDIA leaders have still not come up with a viable seat-sharing plan. Failing to do so would mar their chances of forming the government even if they do end up winning a majority.
Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee, Faridabad
Sir — The governor of West Bengal, C.V. Ananda Bose, has been locking horns with the state government over the selection of vice-chancellors to state-aided universities (“Disruptive”, Sept 11). The governor is the nominal head and is not empowered to make unilateral decisions. It is evident that Bose has been encroaching on the powers of the state government at the behest of the ruling dispensation at the Centre. This is deplorable.
Arun Gupta, Calcutta
Still the boss
Sir — Coco Gauff must be congratulated for becoming the second youngest American after Serena Williams to win the US Open in the women’s singles category and her first Grand Slam (“Fame in her lap, Gauff comes of age”, Sept 11). Gauff improved her game significantly in the past year that helped her achieved this feat. The comeback after facing a defeat at the hands of her opponent, Aryna Sabalenka, in the first set was nothing less than extraordinary.
On the other hand, Novak Djokovic deserves praise for winning in the men’s singles category, thus taking home his 24th Grand Slam and equalling Margaret Court’s tally. His opponent in the finals, Daniil Medvedev, made the path easier for the Djoker by knocking out the top-seeded Carlos Alcaraz in the semi-finals.
Vinay Mahadevan, Dubai
Sir — Novak Djokovic has proved, once again, that he is one the greatest male tennis players in history. His current form ensures that he has got more such victories left in him.
Amit Brahmo, Calcutta
Sir — With Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal taking a back seat, it was believed that the era of the ‘Big Three’ in tennis might be over. Novak Djokovic has greatly debunked this perception.
Diksha Jha, Calcutta