Letters to the Editor dated April 6, 2020

| Updated on April 06, 2020

Small savers hit

Apropos ‘Sharp cut in small savings rates ill-timed’ (April 6), the move is bound to to affect the lower income segments. The RBI and the government, in an effort to ease the impact of Covid-19 on the economy, cut the repo rate sharply and correspondingly reduced the deposit rates on small savings schemes. Small savers will see their disposable income shrink due to a reduction of interest income coupled with rising retail inflation rate. A calibrated cut small savings rates would have been a better option. This would have reduced the economic pain of the common man.

NR Nagarajan


Neglected class

This refers to ‘Untouchables of another kind’ (April 3). Migrant workers are small potatoes in our social ecosystem and a most neglected class. Covid-19 has underscored their plight and exposed the chinks in the country’s armour. It begs the question why such humongous migration is happening in the first place? An unqualified answer is lopsided development.

Various labour and minimum wage rules acts are in place but are openly flouted and these hapless workers are grossly underpaid. Also, there is no mechanism for genuine compensation in the event of any accident at work. The antidote appears to be formalisation of the economy and revisiting labour laws.

Deepak Singhal


Coronavirus cases

This refers to coronavirus cases doubling every 4.1 days (April 6). While the government should be continually monitoring the spread of this contagion, it also places a rather heavy responsibility on the members of the public. People should study the advisories being issued by the government and follow the preventive measures. More attention needs to protecting children. Information on the district-wise day-to-day spread of the virus would be helpful in taking preventive action and checking the spread of the pandemic.

TR Anandan


Collective action

Apropos ‘Princeton University research shows collective action works’ (April 6), a cardinal principle of psychology is ‘what you focus on grows’. Both practical wisdom and scientific truth are packed into this phrase. We are driven along a path, according to what we focus on, both consciously and subconsciously. In the event of a conflict between the two, it is the latter that prevails, being far more powerful, affirm psychologists. Which explains why despite conscious focus some of our goals are not achieved.

If individual focus is so powerful, what about collective will? For instance, responding to the Prime Minister’s will, the people lit lamps for nine minutes on Sunday, from 9 pm. Even if in the immediate context, nothing seems to come out of it, the fact remains that the people's energies have been focussed on conquering the dreaded coronavirus, to which no scientific cure has, as yet, been found. Let us now keep up the faith and positive results would assuredly follow.

V Jayaraman


WTO rules

This refers to ‘India is being too defensive at the WTO on its food subsidies’ (April 6). Globalisation of economies is irrevocably linked with healthy growth of world trade. Sadly, even leading nations do not realise this modern day axiom.

From the GATT era of battling tariff barriers in international trade, the universal perception across trading nations remains archaic.

Post the 2008 global downturn, disagreements still continue in the WTO, particularly in agriculture subsidies.

The developed countries give $400-500 billion of subsidies every year to farmers but are still considered compliant with WTO rules because they opt for income support to their farmers instead of providing subsidies like India. Every nation then loses the larger battle for expanded world trade. There could be a case for systemic evolution of mega blocs as an answer to contrived trade barriers.

R Narayanan

Navi Mumbai

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Send your letters by email to bleditor@thehindu.co.in or by post to ‘Letters to the Editor’, The Hindu Business Line, Kasturi Buildings, 859-860, Anna Salai, Chennai 600002.

Published on April 06, 2020

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