Letters

Letters to the editor dated January 19, 2020

| Updated on January 19, 2021

Vaccination turnout

With reference to the news report ‘Monday scorecard: Close to 1.5 lakh receive Covid shot’, the low vaccination turnout is worrisome and does not augur well for the vaccination drive. Moreover vaccine companies coming out with strictures on a daily basis after the roll out further shatter the confidence and gives an impression that something is amiss with the vaccine. Informed people are adopting a “wait and watch’ policy. Despite few people reporting side effects there seems to be an unease and phobia over the vaccine. The key reasons for this may be politicisation of vaccines. Political executives are more vocal on safety and efficacy however some sections of medical fraternity are sceptical. Second the vaccine is administered by government run hospitals which are notorious for mismanagement and shoddy work. Given the stringent handling requirements, are they well equipped?

Deepak Singhal

Noida

A unique banker

Apropos to the article ‘The man who took banking to the masses’ (January 19), Tonse Ananth Pai, a doctor by profession and a reluctant stayer in a village (he wanted to go to Japan after education), turned into a pioneer banker. He introduced pygmy deposit scheme (opening account with just 25 paise, as against the practice of ₹5 then) and made it the first large bank to have the headquarters in a rural area.

He led in rendering corporate social responsibility much ahead of his times — encouraging poor women to buy a cow to feed cow milk to children for good health (with assurance to buy the surplus), introducing co-operatives and branching to education at the national level.

Syndicate Bank was a role model of customer service in our times. Pai saw it going to government hands in 1969 and with the merger plan of the government it will lose its physical entity but the aura of Dr Pai will continue to enthrall us.

YG Chouksey

Pune

With reference to the article ‘The man who took banking to the masses’ (January 19), we need more visionaries like TA Pai who believed in inclusive banking and took care of the banking needs of the lesser privileged people especially in rural areas. In India, we need more banks which will lend to poor farmers, illiterate people and small entrepreneurs who mainly depend on moneylenders for their financial needs and who in turn squeeze them with higher rates of interest. The small town of Manipal is a testimony to the fact that visionaries can transform a small rural place into a world renowned educational, banking and healthcare hub. Every year, The Kasturba Medical College, the Manipal Institute of Technology and other Institutes located in Manipal attract thousands of students from not only India but also from foreign countries.

Veena Shenoy

Thane

Taming social media

With reference to the article ‘Why the New Force needs taming’ (January 19), the author brings to the fore the dire need for setting up a global authority to fact check and call out fake news on social media. Time has come to harness the untrammelled social media platforms which could be marauding monsters peddling fake news. Social media is often used to settle personal scores and flood the platforms with offensive and violent content. Creating fact checking algorithms is vital to iron out fake and disdainful content. Setting standards for using social media with appropriate action against errant players with sanctions by a strict regulatory mechanism is the need of the hour even though such moves will be difficult to implement.

NR Nagarajan

Sivakasi

 

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Published on January 19, 2021
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