Letters

Letters to the editor dated July 21, 2020

| Updated on July 21, 2020 Published on July 21, 2020

Rural empowerment

This refers to ‘Leveraging reverse migration’ (July 21). Reverse migration of workers on account of the Covid crisis is immensely affecting the rural economy too. It is imperative that all cultivable pieces of land is used for expanding farming activities to curtail the unemployment crisis. Farming activities are always exposed to threats from pests, adverse weather conditions, and irregular supply of inputs, and need to be protected to optimise revenues. With poor literacy rates and dismal standard of living in rural areas, there is barely any use of technology.

The rural sector, which is now being considered as a major driver for consumption and demand, must be transformed to attract investments from the private sector. Building up an investor-friendly environment by ensuring a developed infrastructure is vital, besides incentivising investors to augment the flow of capital by investing in agri-related projects. The rural banking sector must focuson expanding its reach, ensure financial inclusion, and help villagers achieve modern financial literacy. The government must execute more reforms in the agriculture sector to augment employment, income and thereby urge the labourers from returning to the urban places.

VSK Pillai

Kottayam

Wait and watch

The news that the Oxford University-AstraZenca Plc vaccine has shown promising results in early human testing offers a ray of hope. While the results published in The Lancet claims that the new vaccine increased the levels of both protective neutralising antibodies and Immune T-cells that target the virus, it is too early to confirm whether it will be effective, or whether it will work in target populations.

M Jeyaram

Sholavandan, Tamil Nadu

Good leadership

The root cause of the non-linear spike in Covid cases in India may be inexplicable, but laggard-performance despite the prolonged lockdown is evident. Our recovery rate against the virus has significantly improved. The infection doubling time has increased by four times. However, we must continue to practise social distancing and wear a face-mask. Also, one must be prepared for a sudden surge in cases and community transmission. The leadership, despite being engrossed in stabilising the federal structure, meeting foreign threats and enhancing domestic security, has addressed the fears of the people. Thankfully, our authorities woke up early about the virus and pushed for the development of a vaccine. Many of the 200-odd nations, struggling to combat Covid-19, ought to take a leaf from India’s approach. The authorities deserve credit. Both the lockodwn and unlocking have been managed well. It is no small feat that despite domestic flights, trains and offices operatinal, even if in a limited way, our numbers are far better than the US and Brazil.

Girish Lalwani

Delhi

Political defection

The recent developments in Rajasthan are disturbing and amount to subversion of the electoral mandate. When the people have in all consciousness chosen their leaders for five years, it is unfortunate that the latter change their loyalties soon after elections and also justify that their decision does not count as ‘defection’ as it is outside the legislature. An MLA holds that position round the clock and is bound to be loyal to his party. The large-scale dissidence and resultant disqualification and by-election in Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and now Rajasthan lead to a wasteful exercise at the cost of public money. Since this has become a way of circumventing the Anti Defection Law, Schedule 10 has to be amended to the effect that if an elected representative resigns or is disqualified due to defection, he cannot seek re-election during the residual term of the House. As the Speaker is also an elected representative, the authority for disqualification should vest only with the Governor.

M Raghuraman

Mumbai

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Published on July 21, 2020
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