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Evaluating a wasted year


So much time and energy is wasted on workshops and talk shops in Meghalaya but what actually are the outcomes from such conferences/ seminars/workshops? Does anyone ever wonder? And more importantly does anyone even care to do a social audit of all these activities. Recently Sri Sri Ravi Shankar made a mention of the dirt and filth in the city of Shillong. It no longer shames us that someone should make such a remark. There is an active Art of Living congregation in Shillong and elsewhere in the State. Why have they chosen to remain silent over these remarks of their Guruji? Are they planning to launch a cleaning drive around Shillong and particularly to give a facelift to the Umkhrah River? Or have they forgotten Sri Sri’s public exhortation on December 15, 2015?

If cleanliness is next to godliness then we have succeeded in driving away the gods from city. Police Bazar is a big mess with hawkers spilling out on to the streets and leaving the mess behind in the evening since there is not even a semblance of regulation. It’s a free for all here. How can any city survive without regulations about how garbage is to be removed by those who generate it? We seem to have lost our moorings completely and we dare to celebrate the New Year with rock bands et al when we don’t even have the responsibility of doing anything for Shillong. Come on people wake up. This city is not just about music, song and dance. Let’s get real and clean up the mess! That’s the best way to welcome 2016!

Yours etc.,
AJ Malngiang,
Via email  

Subsidizing the rich


The decision to deny LPG subsidy to those who have taxable income of more than Rs 10 lakh annually is welcome. However, the saved amount which is going to be Rs 432 crore per year should be spent on social security. Ours is a ludicrous system where the bulk of the subsidy is dished out to the creamy layer. Amartya Sen said, “Reading the papers and hearing broadcasts, you would think that it is subsidy for the poor-  food and employment- that strains India’s public resources, even though more than twice as much public funds are spent in subsidizing  the better off,” In India, the money does not trickle down from the rich but pumps up to the rich until they vomit it to some foreign banks. The whole subsidy should, entirely, go to the poor instead of a thin one third slice as they are getting now. It will improve India’s poor standing in Human Development Index ( 135th- dwarf at present!). If the lot of the majority of our population is improved then it will certainly increase their purchasing power which in turn gives a huge fillip to our market and Indian economy as a whole.

Yours etc.,
Sujit De,
Via email

New Year resolutions  

Come December and we start to make different resolutions for the upcoming New Year so as to bring a new ‘dawn’ in our life! But each and every New Year see all things coming back to square one within a few days or at a maximum of few weeks! It seems resolutions are meant only to be broken! Moreover, a feeling of frustration creeps in when we fail to maintain the resolutions. So instead of making resolutions for 2016, we can take refuge in memorable quotations of 3 eminent authors and poets.
‘If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way’ — Napoleon Hill.
‘Every moment is a fresh beginning’ — T.S.Eliot
‘Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start now and make a brand new       ending’ — Carl Bard.
If we adhere to these three messages and concentrate in performing our duties sincerely, provide utmost value to each moment of life and strive for a better future instead of lamenting over past faults and deficiencies; 2016 will automatically turn out to be a year of achievements.

 Yours etc.,
Kajal Chatterjee
Kolkata – 114.

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