Structurally suspect, too
This refers to the news item on the enquiry commission report on the Adarsh scam (December 21). The media is unaware and so does not highlight the structural damage a building suffers when unauthorised floors are added to it. As per your report, initially Adarsh was a G+14 storeyed (ground+14) building and it obtained a commencement certificate in September 2005. The second one was given in June 2007, for G+2P+18 floors; when the footing, foundation and pillars designed for the smaller building had already been cast. Finally the same mistake was triplicated by a CC for G+2P+27 floors . One more unauthorised floor was added later. So the structure designed for G+14 floors now carries a load of G+30 floors .Such double overloading affects the structural stability and life of the building. For this lapse, the contractor, structural engineer and architect of the society are responsible and should be prosecuted for rash and negligent action affecting the lives of residents.
R R Shenoy

Abuse of currency notes
The Union Finance Ministry and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) should issue necessary directives for imposing a complete ban on the misuse of currency notes in garlands and for other such decorative purposes. Such a move will not only increase the life of currency notes, but also prevent the ‘premium sale’ of new packs of currency notes, openly ‘sold’ in markets like in Kuchcha Bagh and surroundings in Chandni Chowk (Delhi). Authorities should also impose a complete ban on such open premium sales of new packs of currency notes and coin pouches at such markets. In fact, the misuse of currency notes with the national emblem printed on these, should also be a criminal offence. Banning currency note garlands will also take care of events like the birthday celebration of the then UP Chief Minister Mayawati, held in 2010, when a hefty garland of 1000-rupee notes worth crores was publicly gifted to her. It is surprising that the Union Finance Ministry or the RBI failed to take any action on the event highly criticised by the media and the public. Even now, the Central Board of Direct Taxes could take action to find out the amount of money received by Mayawati and the source of funding for the garland.
Subhash Chandra Agrawal

Outrageous Mulayam
The political games being played with the Muzaffarnagar riot victims is unfortunate. The Samajwadi Party president, Mulayam Singh Yadav’s statement that those in relief camps are agents of the Congress and the BJP is shocking (December 25). Coming from a political veteran of his standing, a likely prime ministerial candidate in 2014, the comment smacks of political arrogance.
Such comments have no place even in private discussions. Moreover, considering the refugees are Muslims, considered a solid vote-bank of the SP, one wonders whether Mulayam’s remarks indicate his shifting stand in the murky game of political polarisation. Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, still struggling to come out of his father’s shadow, spoke on the rehabilitated victims only after the media highlighted their plight. If the biting cold, and the deaths of children cannot compel our leaders to talk and behave sensibly, then one wonders what else can?
Rahul Gandhi’s, now common, surprise visit only aided to rub salts on the wounded minds of the people in the relief and rehabilitation camps. The BJP did no better by felicitating two MLA’s who were accused of instigating the riots. It is only natural that when insensitivity and opportunism rule the roost in every political party, people are waiting with bated breath on how different will the Aam Aadmi Party be.
Ganapathi Bhat

Way to go, Kejriwal
The Delhi Police is concerned about Arvind Kejriwal’s ‘no’ to a separate official residence and security. The ‘lal batti’ and commando culture was practised by the political class to such a ridiculous extent that the Apex Court felt it necessary to ask the government to review this trend.
Swiss Radio, in prime time news, on July 16, 2013, carried a news clip to show how the Swedish President, who was on a scheduled visit to China went to the airport in a private taxi without paraphernalia, walked to the luggage trolley himself, and stood in the queue to collect his boarding pass after checking in his baggage. Why Swiss Radio alone, all of us would have nothing but praise for a President going about just like a commoner.
The commando culture and the cavalcade of cars which our politicians like to inflict on us and disrupt our lives, is an obnoxious practice and Kejriwal has endeared himself to the common man by shunning these ostentatious symbols of power.
V N Ramachandran

BJP wants notes and votes?
I’m amused to read that the BJP will reach out to 10 crore families for donations that could be anything from Rs 10 to 1,000, in the name of Modi for PM, and for that ‘One vote, one note’, is the new slogan for BJP. This is nothing new for the BJP because it has been doing so since the days of the Jan Sangh. More over, the party’s backbone, the RSS still goes door-to-door to collect money. But people wonder when rich parties like the BJP and the Congress, with reserves of a thousand crore rupees, splurging on campaigns, are suddenly soliciting donations from the ‘aam aadmi.’ May be it’s the newest political compulsion. Now, if only the BJP can remember to maintain a list of donors and agree on RTI for political parites, it would really amount to something.
Bidyut Kumar Chatterjee

Catch-22 for AAP
To form a government with 28 members for the AAP is political suicide. First of all, the BJP will not spare them, not for unfulfilled promises, but for taking support from the Congress. Even before government formation they are under attack from the BJP for various reasons. Secondly, even before taking charge of the government, AAP spokespersons have already announced that they will send corrupt former ministers to jail. So how will this alliance work? We will have to wait and watch.
S S Nair

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