Letters to the editor dated June 22, 2020

| Updated on June 22, 2020

Challenges in coal

This refers to ‘Reforms push to coal’ (June 22). The opening up of 41 coal mines for auction and the proposal of single window clearances is welcome news. Monopoly is never a good thing for any sector from a consumer’s perspective. India has huge potential in terms of ramping up its own production; we produce 700 MT per year, but China does almost five times more than this. But before we can start this, we need to recognise the hurdles and figure out how to move past them. Coal transportation from the mines to the power plants remains one of the biggest bottlenecks, and even Coal India Ltd faces logistical challenges in this regard. In additon, the heating value of our coal is not as great as that of the coal from Australia.

We should also not forget that globally, coal consumption demand is expected to fall in the days to come, as countries are trying to move towards renewable energy. So international investors may not come in hordes for these 41 mines. Hence, though this move looks like the best reform for this sector, but it will take considerable time to show desired results.

Bal Govind


Travel time

Apropos ‘How to reduce travel demand amid Covid-19’ (June 22). The authors bring to fore pragmatic ways of reducing the travel demand during the pandemic. Even travel demand for work and business can be streamlined so that movements will be reduced for livelihood. Travel for social purposes can be reduced to the lowest, and reducing shopping trips even for essential buying is vital. Effective use of space management and staggered working hours will also help.

Tentative capacity reduction as per market conditions will reduce travel need and force people to adhere to the conditions for a hygenic and protective life amid Covid-19.

NR Nagarajan


Tread lightly

This refers to ‘The ‘Boycott China’ delusion’ (June 22). The ever growing clamour to boycott Chinese goods is conceivable in the aftermath of the recent tensions at the LAC. But can this be done in the immediate future? No. The massive supply chain disruption necessitated by the pandemic is already making economics challenging, and rocking the China boat will make it worse. Those preaching first ought to practice. If one does simple SWOT analysis of trade with our neighbour in question, than our weakness and threats outweighs our strengths and opportunities.

In case of an official ban on products emanating from other countries, a grey market like in the days of yore and monopoly by Indian manufacturers lulled into complacency shall fester. Eventually customers shall lose by way of high prices and limited options.

Deepak Singhal


Medical care

The coronavirus pandemic has relegated the routine health requirements of people, as the entire machinery is working towards combatting the virus. In the last four months, medical access has not been adequate for many patients with ailments and lifestyle diseases like cardiac problems, diabetes, hypertension, arthritis, asthma, cancer etc, as focus has only been on Covid. The same is the case with clinical laboratories, diagnostic centres etc. No standard protocols have been issued for these so far. Further, many hospitals have Covid wards and this creates fear among the public from going there as they are not sure how isolated the Covid facilities are. This is likely to snowball into a crisis if action is not taken immediately.

The ICMR should issue protocols for such services like OPD doctors, diagnostic services etc, and encourage people to avail medical aid whenever required. To tide over the current situation, the government should also throw open hospitals run by government/semi government departments like the CGHS, Railways, Indian Army etc and PSUs for general public, until normalcy is restored.

M Raghuraman



With reference to the article ‘B-schools seek classroom dynamics...’ published on page 1 of this newspaper on June 22, Great Lakes clarifies that the fee of ₹19 lakh for its one-year MBA includes tuition fee, accommodation, food and study materials for students. Tuition fee was inadvertently left out.

Published on June 22, 2020

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