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Student treatment a shame
Chairman and Publisher
It is heart-wrenching to see the
plight of Indian students (‘No
respite,’ February 11).
What’s even worse — and yes,
humiliating — is that the victims and
not the perpetrators were radio
tagged. Rather than looking to help
and guide these students out of a bad
situation they have been punished.
This is not the first time (nor will it
be the last) that such ill-treatment
has been meted to foreigners in this
Of course, many of the culprits may
eventually be caught and jailed but
the victims bear the scars of their
experience for life.
India, work on your space
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Accept varna as duty
In reference to Dahyabhai Patel’s, Udayshanker
Kasinadhuni’s and Pradeep Srivastava’s letters (January 28)
regarding the Hindu American Foundation’s report on
‘Varna’ in Sanskrit (or ‘caste’ in English), Srivastava is on
Varna defines the ability to do one’s own ‘duty’ to others or
If you see a beehive, an ant colony, a country or any group,
there is a queen, king or a dictator at the top and workers at
the bottom. It is true of any organization, including India
Abroad. There is a president at the top and workers at the
bottom… It is all ‘varna.’
‘Varna,’ or duty, became ‘caste’ to belittle one’s duty during
the final period of this ‘Yuga.’ Those of us who tolerate it and
keep on doing our duty stand to reap eternal life.
There is nothing to get excited about it, whether one is a
queen or a worker.
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Anjali S Maniam Associate Vice-President, Marketing & Special Events
The star of the ‘Aero India’ show held in Bangalore was
Ratan Tata who, aged 73, flew as a co-pilot in an F/A-18
Hornet, a supersonic, all-weather carrier-capable fighter jet
manufactured by Boeing. What differentiates this event
from previous ones is the number of engineers and IT professionals thronging the show seeking a more fulfilling
career in aviation.
The trend augurs well for India, which, till now, has been
luring the brightest ones into careers in administrative services like the Indian Administrative Service. After the hoopla
of making it as a bureaucrat in their locality what excitement
awaits them? They will just get to push a lot of paper.
At the same time, India has to invest more in its space programs. India has been a forerunner in space, what with the
flights of Rakesh Sharma, Kalpana Chawla and Sunita
Williams. The recent moon mission was a colossal waste,
China has made much progress in space, sending a man to
space and getting him back safely. That achievement raised
the country’s prestige in the neighborhood and around
India ought to do the same kind of thing to gain ground.
THE INDIA BUSINESS TEAM
Nikita Pai, Deputy Chief Manager. Call: 91-22-24449144, extension 320
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Put the Gita in libraries
I read with interest your article titled ‘Bed, Bath and a
quiet revolution’ (February 18). It may be a good idea to
place the Gita in motels, but I am not convinced that it is the
only way to spread the message of Hinduism. Other ways we
can spread the message is to have the Gita in libraries, book
stores and online book shops.
When people stay in motels, they are usually on vacation or
business trip and are not generally inclined to indulge in
spiritual pursuits. Those on vacation are in the mood for fun
and business people are too preoccupied with their work.
However, people who visit libraries or book stores, or buy
books online usually have intellectual curiosity and don’t
mind reading something different for a change. We should
also look into having public service announcements on
radio, TV, Facebook and Twitter about locations where the
Gita is available free of charge.
In the long term, we have to convince public school boards
to have famous scriptural works, like the Bible, the Gita and
the Quran, taught in junior high not as religious books — for
that would violate the ‘separation of church and state’ principle — but as a philosophy or literature course requirement.
My children, who studied in private school, were taught
the Gita as part of English literature because the English
teacher, a white American, was very fond of it. But that’s a
hit-or-miss approach and private schools can get away with
a lot of things that public schools cannot and 90 percent of
the children attend public schools in the US.
Missionaries have helped India
The poor and downtrodden are children of God wherever
they reside. Christian missionaries fulfilling their needs are
not putting a gun to their head, asking them to convert.
I thank those Christian missionaries for the yeoman services they have rendered in India. India is dotted with excellent Christian institutions. Examples of these are the
Madras Christian College and the Christian Medical
College, Vellore, acclaimed to be the best medical facility in
I wish to point out that institutions of excellence and
many more like the Loyola College, Stella Maris College, are
institutions of excellence run by dedicated Christians but
which are open to students of all faiths who compete to get
admitted. The mere conversion of the downtrodden did not
result in the establishment and running of these great institutions.
P K Souri
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