This refers to Mamta at 1 (IE,May 18). Mamata Banerjee continues to be an enigma. She blocked development in West Bengal after she sent a Tata project packing but still won the elections. She removed Dinesh Trivedi from the railway ministers berth with little respect for democratic values. She has demonstrated her dictatorial instincts by ordering the arrest of a professor accused of circulating caricatures of her. She has advised rape victims to stay at home and not wear provocative dresses. All this has made her one of the most mercurial politicians ever.
She has also been demanding a financial package from the Centre for West Bengal. Banerjee knows she has numbers on her side and the UPA cannot ignore her. She will continue to rule as long as people are afraid to ask questions.
SHAH RUKH KHAN is once again in the news,this time for the wrong reasons. His alleged misbehaviour with the staff of Wankhede Stadium at Mumbai (I was angry,not drunk… they started it: Shah Rukh,IE,May 18) is unacceptable. Even if they started it,Shah Rukh should have acted in a more mature manner. He should have backed down and later complained to the concerned authorities. The matter seems to have turned ugly after he allegedly used abusive language. However,the decision of the Mumbai Cricket Association to ban the actor from the Wankhede Stadium for five years is not justifiable. As for Shah Rukh,he must apologise to defuse the situation and earn goodwill.
Bogey of reform
THE CAGs report on the financial status of the Indian Railways higlights many areas that require attention. One desperately needed measure is a hike in fares,which would pull the railways out of the red,make it financially viable again and help enforce safety measures. Predictably,Railways Minister Mukul Roy slam
med the report for being intrusive (CAG cannot tell Rlys how to spend funds: Roy,IE,May 18). All the CAG has done is indicate where the railways is losing money
and suggest measures to make it profitable.
THE Air India episode has been a series of mistakes (Con Air,IE,May 15). First,it was a bad move to merge AI and Indian Airlines,in the hope that the resulting entity would be more competitive. Second,when the airline started incurring losses,nothing was done to analyse the causes. Moreover,AI should not have put up with the unreasonable attitude of the pilots. Finally,good money was thrown after bad when AI continued to run losses in spite of rescue packages.