Letters to the Editor — October 27, 2020

Quota Bill

The question of 7.5% horizontal reservation for students in Tamil Nadu who have studied in government schools has unfortunately come in for unjustifiable criticism. These students are not exposed to the same conditions as those who study in private schools. The social and economic backwardness of such students cannot bear comparison to those who can afford to join private schools which are run on different lines. Further, the Governor, who acts on the aid and advice of the State Cabinet, has a limited role to play. According to Article 200 of the Constitution, he has to sign the Bill as soon as possible after its presentation. If not, he has to return the Bill requesting reconsideration, and in case the Bill is passed again, he has to give assent. When such is the peremptory language of Article 200, it is surprising the Governor is seeking time of four weeks to make a decision (Tamil Nadu, “Need 3 to 4 weeks to decide on 7.5% quota Bill, says Governor”, October 23). The Governor, instead of playing a constitutional role, is playing a controversial role, unmindful of the responsibilities of the government.

To claim that the benefit of 7.5% reservation should be equally available to those from private schools is diluting the constitutional purpose of reservation for the socially and educationally backward and is encouraging privatisation which seems to be the agenda of the Centre. There are political overtones to this issue, which ultimately has to be decided on the basis of constitutional priorities and guarantees in education for students studying in government schools.

N.G.R. Prasad,


Metrics of happiness

Happiness for a plurality of people cannot be gauged by narrow metrics (Editorial page, “Metrics of world happiness and the Muslims of India”, October 24). Rather than beneficiaries, Indian Muslims are losers/victims under Indian democracy and have been marginalised in terms of the sharing of political power and delivery of justice. Consolidation of the majority community under a prominent political party itself would lead to the entrenchment of the majority religion. Thus, the governance of India could also exclude the minorities.

There are many examples of riots against the Muslims that demonstrate their painful conditions — their dignity, self-respect and pride are fading. The rise of majoritarian hatred is unfortunate. The unvarnished fact is that happiness for the marginalised and the powerless in India is still elusive.

A. Basheer,


Raining woes

The illegal occupation of lakes, either completely or partially, in the historical city of Hyderabad is a key reason why it faces misery and destruction in extreme weather events (‘Ground Zero’ page, “The revenge of the lakes in Hyderabad”, October 24). State governments, past and present, have failed to book cases against the real estate sharks. In the name of layout regularisation schemes, governments have instead collected lakhs of rupees from innocent buyers of land. No action has been taken against the actual culprits. This farce has been allowed to continue with periodical extension of the validity of these ‘schemes’. There has to be preparation and implementation of a scientific master plan to end this urban anarchy.

M.V. Nagavender Rao,


Biopic ‘800’

Expectedly, the biopic, 800, on Sri Lankan cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan, has been jettisoned by actor Vijay Sethupathi, who was to play a lead role (Editorial page, “A compelling life story, lost in the fog of illogic”, October 23). Protesting against the film just because it is about the feats of a cricketer from the island nation is stifling creativity. This does not mean that the genocide in that country is correct. Sport, films and music can help bridge many divides between nations.

S. Ramakrishnasayee,


The pressure of ‘crowd censorship’ on the freedom to think and act cannot be wished away. Even the Governor was not spared when he attempted to clear the cobwebs in the administrative set-up in many universities. Certain political parties, some of which exist only on letter pads, appear to be forming this chorus to intimidate artistes.

T.M. Ranganathan,

Srirangam, Tamil Nadu

The attempt to portray the cricketer as a ‘hill country Tamil’ would be to whitewash the cries of Tamil mothers seeking answers and justice for their lost sons who vanished in the genocide. It is also pertinent to note that the condition of hill country Tamils, whether in Sri Lanka or India, has not improved at all. A narrative of appropriating the interests of one group to pit it against another related group would be intellectual dishonesty.

Kavin Castro,

Tiruchi, Tamil Nadu

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Printable version | Nov 30, 2020 1:17:01 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/letters-to-the-editor-october-27-2020/article32947432.ece

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