Letters to the editor dated September 22, 2021

| Updated on September 22, 2021

Clean energy

This refers to ‘Land for green power will be a challenge’ (September 22). With 44.3 GW as at the end of August, India ranks fifth globally in the field of installed capacity of solar energy. India is running the world’s largest clean energy programme to achieve 175 GW of renewable capacity, including 100GW of solar power by 2022. However, it requires consumption of mega size land parcels.

Identification of barren lands or lands unfit for cultivation though would suit most for installation of solar panel. Few socio-economic issues like ensuring the stretches are free from cattle grazing or human trespassing must be looked into, keeping in mind the recent ruling of apex court on laying transmission lines in Rajasthan underground to protect endangered species.

India has around 7,300 railway stations. Apart from he rooftops of the railway platforms, the unused space available at many stations can be used to install solar panels.

RV Baskaran


I-T portal

The new income tax e-filing portal had a bumpy start from the day of its launch on June 7, and continues to face technical glitches even after more than three months.

The approach to launching a website of such a vital importance should be parallel or phased implementation, but the developers opted for the cut-off approach, that is, the erstwhile website was junked even before the new website went live.

The role of users (tax experts of the Income Tax Department) involved with Infosys developers should be investigated, for not giving emphasis on user acceptance testing (UAT) sign-off process. UAT is a major milestone and has pre-defined deliverables. It is a kind of NOC from users. The issues with the new IT portal should be sorted out soon.

Sagar Gambhir


UK travel curbs

Apropos ‘India warns of reciprocal action if UK doesn’t revoke vax-linked travel curbs’ (September 22), The UK’s non-acceptance of a vaccine developed by one of its own firms seems inexplicable and clearly untenable; what’s more, the said vaccine has reportedly been supplied by India to the UK at the latter’s request.

One hopes that the above ban is simply due to some low-level bureaucratic oversight and is not driven by ‘mistrust of developing country technical capabilities’ by the developed world. India has proved to the world its prowess in technology led development in software, railway construction, medical feats, agriculture, etc. And indeed India’s current vaccination programme has been highly appreciated around the world, including by the WHO Chief. The UK would do well to quickly revoke the travel ban.

V Vijaykumar


A discriminatory move

The UK’s decision to quarantine even vaccinated Indians lacks rationale and logic. Why is the UK making an exception to Covishield? It is an identical version of Vaxzenvia, the European brand name for the AstraZeneca vaccine?

Now, the question arises, why the Serum Institute of India didn’t ensure Covishield was in the approved list of vaccines in the UK? If the UK follows the approval procedure of the European Medicines Agency, the Indian manufacturer should have applied for approval. In July, the Britain said the UK health regulator had approved Serum Institute’s vaccine, but EMA was yet to give its nod.

N Sadhasiva Reddy


Kharif output

This refers to ‘Kharif output seen at record 150.5 mt’ (September 22). Our farmers deserve a pat for this achievement. Despite India being a agricultural economy, we still do not have modern storage facilities. Often the farmers are forced to sell their bumper stock to middlemen at cheaper rates.

The government must assist farmers in building good storage systems. This will prevent middlemen from hoarding food. Also, in the absence of good roads, farmers are unable to take their produce to far-off markets that will fetch them good prices. Hence building good roads is also vital.

Veena Shenoy


Published on September 22, 2021

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