The death of Jacintha Saldanha, reportedly traumatised by the media coverage of the hoax call — made by two Australian DJs who impersonated Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles to call the London hospital, where Kate William was being treated, and asked for details of her treatment — is indeed unfortunate. It is important to probe the death of the nurse. It is difficult to believe that she committed suicide just because she transferred the call to another nurse who unwittingly disclosed the details of the Duchess’ condition. Some other factors might have forced Jacintha to end her life. It is important to clear the air for the sake of Saldanha and the royal family.

Motupalli S. Prasad,

Chennai

Prank calls are an impingement on a person’s right to live with dignity. I have heard such hoax calls aired on FM radio channels in Hyderabad. In one instance, a DJ called a college student and offered him a role in an ad film on the adverse effects of using plastic. The student was told he would have to wear plastic underwear which would be set on fire. He would then have to shout “don’t use plastic.” He was made to repeat the slogan many times. After a while, the jockey chided him saying, “Don’t you have any shame? Would you do anything for money? Even wear underwear and run on the streets?” and so on. I was dumbstruck by the DJ’s cruelty. All this, we were told, was done at the “request” of the student’s friend. We must reject such victimising as “fun.”

B. Vijayalakshmi,

Hyderabad

There is nothing wrong in playing a prank or two. Not a year passes without my playing a prank on All Fool’s Day. But pranksters must follow some rules. Do not play a prank on strangers since it is impossible to know their mental disposition. Two, never play pranks on people in sensitive, important responsibilities such as policemen, doctors and security personnel. Clearly, the pranksters in Jacintha’s case have a lot to answer for.

Mohan Das,

Bangalore

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