The National Disaster Response Force, the Centre, the governments of Andhra Pradesh and Orissa, and the Indian Meteorological Department deserve praise for their collaborative efforts to save lives from the severe cyclonic storm, Phailin. We have learnt our lessons from the Uttarakhand tragedy in which thousands died. It is clear that sound preparedness and robust assistance can minimise the impact of natural calamities.

Sumeet Mahendra,

New Delhi

The Centre and the governments of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha need to be complimented on their efforts to save lives from the monster cyclone. One hopes such coordination will continue during reconstruction too, and normality will be restored at the earliest.

M. Balakrishnan,


Man can, at best, predict the gravity of a natural calamity with the help of science and technology, and minimise the losses. For the first time in my memory, all departments, right from the IMD to the government agencies, the media and NGOs joined hands to overcome the situation effectively.

K. Manasa Sanvi,


Many television channels bombarded viewers with the possible impact of Phailin hours before its landfall. While the satellite image showed the cyclone moving counter-clockwise — which is the case in the northern hemisphere — the graphics in almost all channels depicted it moving in the clockwise direction. Reporters seemed unaware of the fact that cyclones move in a clockwise direction in the southern hemisphere and the other way round in the northern hemisphere. Wrong visuals mislead viewers, especially students. Accuracy is of prime importance.

V.M. Govind Krishnan,

New Delhi

Falling standards

I was appalled on reading the news that the principal of a private engineering college in Tuticorin was murdered by three students in an act of vengeance. The students must have held a grudge against the principal for some time.

Teaching was once a noble profession. Teachers not only imparted knowledge but also taught moral values to their wards. But today, thanks to hundreds of colleges in the country, teaching has become yet another expedient to make a living and, in some cases, swindle money. When teachers themselves are apathetic towards their jobs and set bad examples, students are bound to become cynical.

D. Venkatramanan,


It is ironical that the incident took place in a land that considers teachers god. The present generation is exposed to various forms of media, which have a negative influence on young minds. Parents are more interested in the marks their children score than in the moral values they learn.

A.S. Divya Sudha,


Incidents of students threatening principals and teachers on phone are common. As daughter of a principal, I have seen many incidents which affect the family too. We have failed to inculcate moral values in students through practical acts.

S. Blessy Deborah,


A school teacher in Chennai was stabbed to death by a student of class nine a few months ago. Now, it is the gruesome murder of a principal of an engineering college by three students. The attitude of the student community is disturbing. One feels sorry for the parents of the three students who must have worked hard to get their wards admitted to an engineering college.

Students are influenced by films which portray ragging as heroism. The mushrooming of many engineering colleges and the lowering of qualifying marks have led to students with no interest in the course getting admissions. The behaviour of our elected representatives also sets a bad example to the youth.

V. Pandy,


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