Letters

Letters to the editor dated October 22, 2021

| Updated on October 22, 2021

PM’s address to the nation

This refers to Prime Minister Modi’s address to the nation on October 22. Though the Prime Minister has been focusing on team work and self-reliance in all possible areas since his speech from the ramparts of Red Fort on August 15, 2014, the message is yet to percolate to the grassroots level.

Restoring trust in governance and instilling democratic principles in public and private sector organisations continue to be an uphill task.

Ownership of undertakings and their management by government or private sector organisations should be secondary to their overall effective and professional functioning in public interest.

The return of Air India to the fold of Tatas should be seen from this perspective. As we have seen in the case of banking sector, government has all the power to change ownership, if necessary, in public interest. But to ensure all activities conform to the dictates of public good, public trust and participation at all levels, political will is necessary.

India has the resources to bring down poverty, ensure Universal Healthcare and provide universal basic minimum wage for all workers. What we have been lacking was the political will and public trust in governance. But the present signals are encouraging.

India should not lag behind for want of the will to play the given role at this historic moment.

MG Warrier

Mumbai

Vaccination milestone

The enviable achievement of 100 crore doses in 278 days had to be predicated on the strength of our long and ongoing national immunisation programme and its attendant ready infra for last mile delivery. India potentially has another advantage, Indian companies already supply the bulk of vaccines to the world.

It took a Covid to draw universal attention to the Indian pharmaceutical industry. We must amplify the opportunity. We have the highly skilled manpower, a strong manufacturing base, lower cost and distribution system. But our indigenous research and development of vaccines stands limited to pneumonia or dengue strain and now, Covid-19. R&D costs are immense, to research and market just one major drug and vaccine add considerably to time, cost and high levels of evaluation /certification.

We need a big export market to plough back profits. The government enthused by the “Covid 1 billion mark” today, ought to aim to make our pharma sector among the top three by 2030.

R Narayanan

Navi Mumbai

New warriors

This refers to “Credit for vaccination drive goes to team India” by Narendra Modi (October 22).

The Prime Minister did well to take recourse to the print media to appreciate the contribution of all those who made it possible to reach the landmark of 100 crore vaccinations in just 278 days.

However, a special mention of gratitude was due to the frontline and health workers who lost their lives or continued to serve in spite of the death of their near ones.

To concentrate on a role which needs close attention in the midst of personal tragedy is an act unparalled bravery.

They are today’s warriors as invaluable as our soldiers on the battlefield.

YG Chouksey

Pune

Stem-Borer too is a menace

Apropos ‘CPCRI takes-up research on YLD-resistant areca’ (October 21) is an opportune move, albeit belated.

With many farmers, including those in the coffee sector, opting for alternate commercial crops, the research community must serve farmers by offering them field level remedies.

However, the Central Coffee Research Institute (CCRI) under Indian Coffee Board has not been successful in solving the Stem-Borer issue in coffee.

Coffee growers, already facing vagaries of weather, are now hit by crop loss due to shot-hole and berry borer.

Prestigious academic institutions like ICAR and agri-universities must join hands to rescue the pest-ridden coffee sector, which has so far learned to live with the problems.

Rajiv Magal

Halekere Village (Karnataka)

Published on October 22, 2021

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