TAMIL NADU

Food for thought

The United Nations Independent Expert on Human Rights and Extreme Poverty, Arjun K. Sengupta's interview (Nov. 18) made useful reading. His definition of poverty "as a violation of basic human rights" should serve as food for thought for the planners in both developed and developing countries.

"Right to work" is the basic right of an individual to lead a decent life and the governments alone, though some concrete measures, can guarantee that freedom.

Simple market-based reforms, as Mr. Sengupta has correctly put it, cannot eradicate extreme poverty in any country.

S. Ramakrishnasayee, Ranipet, T.N.

Mr. Sengupta's revelations are shocking. It is a pity that the poor and the needy in America were left out of the post-Hurricane Katrina relief and rehabilitation operations.

As he has rightly pointed out there is a total lack of concern for basic human rights.

K. Murlidar, Chennai