Letters to the editor

Readers’ comments: Will Gorakhpur deaths make authorities wake up and fix the public health sector?

A selection of readers’ opinions.

Ailing sector

I commend your article revealing the poor media reporting on public health (“The Readers’ Editor writes: Media’s health coverage is too often episodic – Gorakhpur is an example”). Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government have failed on all matters concerning public health and education. And though they claim to have made several economic reforms, industry is also in a mess.

What is worrying is that any criticism or reporting on the failures of the government is silenced. Modi and his colleagues have tried to repackage measures initiated by the UPA government, only to implement them disastrously.

Public healthcare in India has deep-rooted problems. There are not enough doctors and trained nurses hospitals are poorly equipped and we have a bad and inadequate administration. Most of our professional colleges for medicine and engineering are owned and run by politicians for profit.

In all his travels abroad, the PM has only concentrated on issues of defence, FDI and the like. Neither he nor other ministers care to give adequate attention to social issues. The Gorakhpur hospital incident seems to be a case of massive mismanagement. Can Gorakhpur awaken the authorities to wake up and solve serious problems? – SN Iyer

Triple talaq judgement

Chief Justice JS Khehar’s dissenting judgement is very confusing (“‘Religion a matter of faith, not logic’: CJI Khehar’s dissenting opinion on triple talaq”). The writer of this article says: “the dissenting order insists that the Supreme Court’s job is to protect and enforce the constitution”. If that is the case, I fail to understand on what basis the judge pronounced that “we are satisfied in injuncting Muslim husbands, from pronouncing ‘talaq-e-biddat’”.

Secondly, why did he did get into the realm of politics by saying that “we would also beseech different political parties to keep their individual political gains apart, while considering the necessary measures requiring legislation”.
Finally, it would be interesting to read what the other four judges had to say in their judgements. – P Raghavendra

***

Is this the best headline you can come up with after a ground-breaking and progressive verdict from the Supreme Court (“Triple talaq has been declared unconstitutional – but not everyone is celebrating”)? The Supreme Court bench consisted of independent jurors from a cross-section of religions. And the BJP is some how politicising the issue? I would have thought a liberal publication such as yours would have celebrated a decision like this. – Naresh Podila

Goa votes

I am registered as a voter in Panaji constituency but after the fiasco in March this year, when the BJP formed the government in a hung Assembly, I had sworn to myself that I would never cast my vote from the city again (“The big question in Goa before the high-stakes bypoll: Will Parrikar win Panjim for the sixth time?”). But I just happened to read your article, and it has made me realise that I should.If this is indeed a contest between David and Goliath, then may the righteous win! – S Khan

India unraveling

The RSS and their upper caste leaders want Brahmins to stay at the top of the social ladder, while Dalits and Muslims are increasingly sidelined (“On a perilous path: India is being unmade, a lynching at a time”). Indians have undertaken this systematic human rights violation throughout history. This attitude of casteism seems to be ingrained in us. – Deepa Rashmi

Fatal flaws

This incident reflects Modi’s ignorance and his arrogance (“By sneering at Hamid Ansari’s diplomatic stint in West Asia, Modi undermined India’s foreign policy”). The position he occupies now was never held before by an individual who simultaneously possesed both these flaws. – Ahmad Shamshad

Blue whale challenge?

It’s great that no concrete links have been found in India linking some children’s suicides to the Blue Whale challenge, but that cannot mean the threat can be ruled out (“Blue Whale panic: Across India, police find little connection to online suicide game”). In Russia, there have been trials on the same. I can appreciate that you do not want to fuel panic and wish to discourage rumour-mongering, but there could be a real danger here. The threat may not be at our doors yet, but it can get here, and parents need to be vigilant. People who take your word at face value and don’t bother to research more could be lulled into a false sense of security. – Siddharth Deshpande

Innocent or guilty?

Our so-called intellectuals and liberals seem to be more concerned about the rights of the culprits than those of the victim (“Dhananjoy Chatterjee, hanged for rape in Kolkata 13 years ago, gets a retrial through a movie”). They forget that the victim’s human right to live was snatched away by the culprit. Human rights are for humans, not for killers with animal instincts. – Lalit Bose

***

Thank you for highlighting a possibly botched up investigation. It would only be fair to reopen the case. – Soumyajit

Doklam standoff

I too would like the same outcome in case of a war between China and India that RK Sharma describes in his letter to Scroll.in but this is unlikely to happen (“Readers’ comments: If war breaks out with China, India must not lose the chance to make up for 1962”). India is not yet ready to go face to face with the world’s second most powerful country. I don’t know how many countries will stand by India. China and Russia are closer together than ever before and China has managed to repeatedly thwart India’s NSG bid. If there is a conflict, US Congress will be reluctant to offer any concrete support to India. An occassional call from Trump to Modi doesn’t mean much. – Swapan Das

Ladakh face-off

How much was Scroll.in paid by China for this headline (“‘Extremely dissatisfied’: China blames Indian Army for Ladakh scuffle”)? As an Indian media organisation, shouldn’t you analyse the video and state the facts as they are, instead of pointing to China’s stance? Indians don’t care if China is “extremely dissatisfied” by the Indian response. – Chandrashekar Ganesh

Political thought

It appears that one cannot expect such deep reflection from today’s ruling class (“Question for the BJP’s Ram Madhav: How Indian are his party’s ideas of nationalism and development?”). Once you start rewriting history, you can’t learn from it. The repercussions of policies framed today will be felt after 15-20 years. – Rajendra Kulkarni

Manual scavenging

I cannot believe the director was forced to leave Tamil Nadu (“‘Kakkoos’ director Divya Bharathi leaves Tamil Nadu after allegedly receiving rape, attack threats”). She should be a role model for every human being. After watching Kakkoos, I am determined to do my part for the elimination of manual scavenging. – Aruna Satyamurthy

Well played

This article is melodramatic (“What is common between Amit Shah’s BJP and the Australian cricket team in its heyday?”). The author has ignored the quality of the players involved. Lillie and Thomson were the best in the business at that time and so are Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. If Australia played new brand of cricket, BJP is delivering a new brand of governance. The shameful era of corruption is done and dusted. If the BJP’s is eyeing a tall target of 350 seats in 2019, so be it. The Austrailian team had a hunger for winning and so does the BJP. – Bala Ram

Music to the ears

This is great news. Many fans are eagerly awaiting this release (“Gulzar’s 1988 movie ‘Libaas’ to be finally released later this year”). What a memorable event it shall be. My best wishes to all those involved in the project. – Jai Singh Bissau

Special status

The Centre’s affidavit seeking a larger discussion on Article 35A is a step in right direction (“Article 35A row: BJP has shifted focus from azadi to special status in Kashmir. But for how long?”). The separatists want to enjoy all the privileges at the cost of the whole nation even as they threaten to break away from the country. That is unacceptable. Before claiming special Constitutional guarantees, they should demonstrate their allegiance and commitment to the Indian Constitution. – Bichu Muttathara

Unequal gains

Why are benefits going only to IIT and IISc students (“PhD students from IITs, IISc to get monthly central fellowship of Rs 70,000”)? That’s comparable to a situation where the rich only get richer. Why can’t everyone get these benefits? There could be a common fellowship to boost research in other institutes as well, or it should be open to all. IITs and IIScs already have better facilities and research culture than other institutes. – Jayasurya

Scissors down

It comes as a pleasant surprise that there are some government administered bodies like the Film Tribunal who are able to stand their ground against the Safron brigade in the country (“Kejriwal documentary ‘An Insignificant Man’ passed uncut without NOC from Modi”). Hats off to them! – Abdul Majeed Khan

***

The fact that the appellate tribunal has passed this documentary without any cuts indicates that the problem was indeed with the previous boss, Pankaj Nihalani. It is good that he has been shown the door. – PD Amarnath

We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
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With those withdrawal symptoms kicking in, all you need is a good rebound show.

Hangovers tend to have a debilitating effect on various human faculties, but a timely cure can ease that hollow feeling generally felt in the pit of the stomach. The Game of Thrones Season 7 finale has left us with that similar empty feeling, worsened by an official statement on the 16-month-long wait to witness The Great War. That indeed is a long time away from our friends Dany, Jon, Queen C and even sweet, sweet Podrick. While nothing can quite replace the frosty thrill of Game of Thrones, here’s a list of awesome shows, several having won multiple Emmy awards, that are sure to vanquish those nasty withdrawal symptoms:

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What do you get when the makers of the Dark Knight Trilogy and the studio behind Game of Thrones collaborate to remake a Michael Crichton classic? Westworld brings together two worlds: an imagined future and the old American West, with cowboys, gun slingers - the works. This sci-fi series manages to hold on to a dark secret by wrapping it with the excitement and adventure of the wild west. Once the plot is unwrapped, the secret reveals itself as a genius interpretation of human nature and what it means to be human. Regardless of what headspace you’re in, this Emmy-nominated series will absorb you in its expansive and futuristic world. If you don’t find all of the above compelling enough, you may want to watch Westworld simply because George RR Martin himself recommends it! Westworld will return for season 2 in the spring of 2018.

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3. Big Little Lies

It’s a distinct possibility that your first impressions of this show, whether you form those from the trailer or opening sequence, will make you think this is just another sun-kissed and glossy Californian drama. Until, the dark theme of BLL descends like an eerie mist, that is. With the serious acting chops of Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman as leads, this murder mystery is one of a kind. Adapted from author Liane Moriarty’s book, this female-led show has received accolades for shattering the one-dimensional portrayal of women on TV. Despite the stellar star cast, this Emmy-nominated show wasn’t easy to make. You should watch Big Little Lies if only for Reese Witherspoon’s long struggle to get it off the ground.

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4. The Night of

The Night Of is one of the few crime dramas featuring South Asians without resorting to tired stereotypes. It’s the kind of show that will keep you in its grip with its mysterious plotline, have you rooting for its characters and leave you devastated and furious. While the narrative revolves around a murder and the mystery that surrounds it, its undertones raises questions on racial, class and courtroom politics. If you’re a fan of True Detective or Law & Order and are looking for something serious and thoughtful, look no further than this series of critical acclaim.

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6. Empire

At its heart, Empire is a simple show about a family business. It just so happens that this family business is a bit different from the sort you are probably accustomed to, because this business entails running a record label, managing artistes and when push comes to shove, dealing with rivals in a permanent sort of manner. Empire treads some unique ground as a fairly violent show that also happens to be a musical. Lead actors Taraji P Henson and Terrence Howard certainly make it worth your while to visit this universe, but it’s the constantly evolving interpersonal relations and bevy of cameo appearances that’ll make you stay. If you’re a fan of hip hop, you’ll enjoy a peek into the world that makes it happen. Hey, even if you aren’t one, you might just grow fond of rap and hip hop.

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7. Modern Family

When everything else fails, it’s comforting to know that the family will always be there to lift your spirits and keep you chuckling. And by the family we mean the Dunphys, Pritchetts and Tuckers, obviously. Modern Family portrays the hues of familial bonds with an honesty that most family shows would gloss over. Eight seasons in, the show’s characters like Gloria and Phil Dunphy have taken on legendary proportions in their fans’ minds as they navigate their relationships with relentless bumbling humour. If you’re tired of irritating one-liners or shows that try too hard, a Modern Family marathon is in order. This multiple-Emmy-winning sitcom is worth revisiting, especially since the brand new season 9 premiers on 28th September 2017.

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8. The Deuce

Headlined by James Franco and Maggi Gyllenhaal, The Deuce is not just about the dazzle of the 1970s, with the hippest New York crowd dancing to disco in gloriously flamboyant outfits. What it IS about is the city’s nooks and crannies that contain its underbelly thriving on a drug epidemic. The series portrays the harsh reality of New York city in the 70s following the legalisation of the porn industry intertwined with the turbulence caused by mob violence. You’ll be hooked if you are a fan of The Wire and American Hustle, but keep in mind it’s grimmer and grittier. The Deuce offers a turbulent ride which will leave you wanting more.

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9. Dexter

In case you’re feeling vengeful, you can always get the spite out of your system vicariously by watching Dexter, our favourite serial killer. This vigilante killer doesn’t hide behind a mask or a costume, but sneaks around like a criminal, targeting the bad guys that have slipped through the justice system. From its premier in 2006 to its series finale in 2013, the Emmy-nominated Michael C Hall, as Dexter, has kept fans in awe of the scientific precision in which he conducts his kills. For those who haven’t seen the show, the opening credits give an accurate glimpse of how captivating the next 45 minutes will be. If it’s been a while since you watched in awe as the opening credits rolled, maybe you should revisit the world’s most loved psychopath for nostalgia’s sake.

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10. Rome

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This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Hotstar and not by the Scroll editorial team.