I am not at all surprised by the tributes being paid to The Hindu by its readers following Khushwant Singh's letter praising it (Oct. 19). I was posted at the Air Force base, Srinagar, from 1974-80. During winters, the newspapers came late because of the delayed arrival of flights from Delhi, Jammu and Amritsar.
The Indian Airlines flights were dependent heavily on the navigational aids and Ground Control Approach radars of the Air Force for landing. The crew as a courtesy used to bring newspapers to the control tower when they came to file clearance and for met briefing. There was a flight which used to take off from Chennai in the morning to New Delhi. The same flight was used for the Delhi-Srinagar leg. When the airline crew learnt that there was a madrasi who terribly missed The Hindu, they ensured that I got a copy every day. My wife and I still recall those good old days.
Gp Capt J.R. Arunachalam (retd.),
The praise by Khushwant Singh should make school and college going students realise the importance of inculcating the habit of reading this newspaper at least for an hour, daily. They are bound to become better informed citizens. I started reading the paper from high school, i.e. since 1954-55, and my father played a pivotal role in this. He used to find some time in the evening to test me on what I had read.
I am proud to say that this did play a major role in helping me occupy responsible positions in my career and in public life. Based on my experience, I have introduced it as a “standard newspaper” in family circles, and among friends and college students across India. I continue helping and guiding my nephews and nieces in preparing essays on various subjects that are discussed and debated in their schools and colleges. Again, it's thanks to The Hindu!
Keywords: Khushwant Singh's letter