Ramachandra Guha’s observations on the apathy towards specialised knowledge in the Indian administrative set-up (July 11) were interesting. Specialisation entails a sense of professionalism and probity, qualities that are anathema to government agencies. But Dr. Guha’s advocacy of a pastoral landscape in Uttarakhand is problematic. The State was formed to harness its rivers for the development of a populace much of which was untouched by basic needs such as electricity.
Academics and specialists stay away from public participation. They should engage directly with the people concerned and inculcate in them a more active sense of responsibility.