Letters to the Editor — June 22, 2021

Centre on ex gratia

The central government’s stand on the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be an excuse to abdicate its responsibility to grant ex gratia to the families of COVID-19 victims. Its thesis that limiting relief to a monetary pay-off is a ‘narrow and pedantic approach’ is rendered spurious by the simple fact that money does matter to alleviate suffering and to survive. The contention that there is no precedent of giving ex gratia payments for a disease or a disaster spread over a long period of time does not hold good as everything in life is not done on the basis of precedent. True, there is no certainty of an end to the pandemic. But the Government cannot cite it as a reason for refusing to consider granting ex gratia compensation. Many families are staring at a bleak future and only the Government can help them pick up the threads of life. If the Government has no qualms about spending many crores on the Central Vista, a vanity project, why not provide relief for lakhs of families in distress?

G. David Milton,

Maruthancode, Tamil Nadu

A changing world

International politics and diplomacy have become complicated in recent decades (Editorial page, “The comrades and their divergent perspectives”, June 21). Up to 1991, it was quite simple to divide the world in terms of groupings and understand their rivalry and cooperation, but with the emergence of globalisation, this has become complex. The issue of interdependence casts its own shadow. The emergence of the Quad, and outside its tent, China, will be a deciding factor in India’s engagement with the major powers.

Dewang Ganesh Thosar,

Nandgaon, Raigad, Maharashtra

Milkha Singh

That Milkha Singh managed to shape his life amid very difficult circumstances, including Partition, and go down in history as one of the greatest ever performers to have ever set foot on the track is truly inspiring. It is a matter of pride that Milkha Singh’s wax statue shares space along with other luminaries at Madame Tussauds. He will be remembered for his poignant quote, “Hard work, dedication and will power... for a person with these qualities, [the] sky is the limit.”

R. Sivakumar,


Need for quick justice

One is stunned beyond description reading about the rise in cases of students reporting sexual harassment and abuse in schools. I would suggest fast track courts for the hearing and disposal of such cases. Dragging on sensitive cases will add to the trauma of students who already have much to deal with in today’s complicated world. Tamil Nadu is a State that is a haven of peace and tranquillity, and also academic excellence, and this should be safeguarded.

Mani Nataraajan,


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