Letters

Letters to the Editor — June 20, 2020

Message from Galwan

Either China’s rulers lack knowledge about the law of unintended consequences or their hubris has blinded them to it (Page 1, “‘PLA planned attack for at least two days’,” June 19). Illegal occupation of a neighbour’s territory on the sly and killing the latter’s soldiers in unprovoked attacks have long-term consequences even if the perpetrator is a rising power. Chinese statecraft about war, which developed centuries ago, has no eternal relevance, especially in a technology-driven world. The preference for a short-term tactical messaging to the adversary over conventional war, especially if it is carried out in a cowardly and treacherous manner, has hidden long-term costs.

The Chinese government thinks it has sent out a signal to India and the rest of the world that it is accountable only to itself. The message that the world received is quite another. What has come out loud and clear is about China’s untrustworthiness and blatant disregard for bilateralism and international conventions.

Post-Galwan, India will reinforce its border infrastructure and strengthen its military preparedness to insulate itself against China’s territorial expansionism and military aggression. Over the next 10 years, India will look at gradually achieving self-sufficiency in major sectors of the economy and to decouple itself economically from China. China’s Belt and Road Initiative will run into rough weather once the signatories start realising the folly of signing contracts with a nation that plays by its own rules.

V.N. Mukundarajan,

Thiruvananthapuram

 

Made in India

Decoupling by India from Chinese manufacturing is not something that can be achieved in a short span of time as a retaliatory measure for the border situation created by China (OpEd page, ‘Parley’ — “Can India decouple itself from Chinese manufacturing?”, June 19). Knowing fully well, since the 1960s, the unpredictable and inscrutable ways of China, India’s dependence on manufacturing has been allowed to increase by leaps and bounds, which is a strategic mistake. At least after the economic liberalisation in the 1990s, India should have concentrated on building robust infrastructure, encouraged vocational education in a big way to create a large pool of skilled workers, and encouraged the manufacturing sector with suitable reforms in land, labour and taxes. That would have attracted better Foreign Direct Investment inflows into the manufacturing sector in view of the availability of a huge domestic market. Even the mission, “Make in India”, has not made much headway, as the above infirmities have continued to exist. At least now, we should formulate and implement a long-term plan if we are to make India a manufacturing hub. First, we should vastly improve our infrastructure so as to bring down logistics costs. There have to be efforts to bolster the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector which can manufacture a majority of the goods being imported from China. Steps need to be taken for manufacture of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) locally, as we are critically dependent on China on this front. Further, we need to have a taxation system which is predictable and transparent, apart from eliminating corruption at all levels.

Kosaraju Chandramouli,

Hyderabad

Strangely, the Indian attitude towards buying goods has metamorphosed from buying quality first products to low-priced ones. The use-and-throw attitude has set in and opened the channel for Chinese products to flood the market.

Raising slogans, of ‘boycott’, are not going to get us far. Instead, we should learn business lessons from China — adaptability to change the game to suit the situation.

Vikas Naron Komath,

Palayad, Kannur, Kerala

 

Dispute resolution

One fails to appreciate the view that supports online mediation of settlement of disputes merely on the grounds that it is convenient, cost-effective and an efficient use of time. Let me recall that Lok Adalats were established in 1987 followed by mediation centres as compulsory and not merely obligatory after the amendment of the Civil Procedure Code in 2002 (Editorial page, “Mediation in the age of COVID-19, June 19). Now, all over the country, the institution of mediation has become not only common but also popular. The attendance of the disputing parties supported by their lawyers before mediators appointed by the High Courts has become indispensable in a situation of an out-of-court settlement. The personal appearance of all these parties to meet face-to-face, discuss, agree or oppose serious contentions involved in the dispute cannot be dispensed with at any cost, especially in terms of costs and time. Therefore, I am of the opinion that online mediation will be reduced to an empty formality when it is very difficult to convince the disputing parties through regular face-to-face mediation.

B.M. Baliga,

Bengaluru

 

Online and offline

Attending online classes might have its advantages but the drawbacks should also be considered (Andhra Pradesh, “Online classes: students complain of eye and ear problems”, June 19). With the emphasis now on digital methods, students do not have a choice. Compulsory online attendance and regular online tests after classes keep them glued to the screen for long hours. Lack of proper study material in paper in some cases has compounded the problems. There is also a clear difference between a live online class and a video-recorded lecture. Live sessions are subject to a lot of visual and audio disturbances; apart from the health issues, there is a greater problem of a lack of concept clarity. Exams based on concepts taught online could lead to confused knowledge consumption. I am not against these classes but I do request the authorities to consider these aspects too.

Lalitha Evani,

Tiruchanur, Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 9:20:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/letters-to-the-editor-june-20-2020/article31873164.ece

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