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Our environment, our hope

 Editor,

World Environment Day will be celebrated on the June 5, worldwide. It’s a day when the environment will be ‘pampered’ with various ceremonies and functions. It will be the only day where plants and other trees will be properly thanked for their role in keeping our city green. New trees will be planted, streets will be cleaned and awareness will be spread throughout the world. This is a good initiative especially in those parts of the country where the green cover is rapidly disappearing. With the effects of global warming, there comes the need to really educate people on the importance of the environment. To conserve the environment should be our number one priority especially today. Shillong which usually is ‘cool’ now is really feeling the ‘heat’.

Temperatures have risen during these last few months. We never required to run the air conditioning system in our cars because we have a natural ‘AC’ but in some parts of the city today, it’s a must to switch it on.Either it’s too humid or too polluted by the fumes of the cars. We may not be the direct victims of global warming as yet but it has started to show. Shillong’s weather may be unpredictable and may amuse some of us but it is sad to say that this is also due to the effects of global warming. We need to conserve our beautiful and blessed environment because we are still lucky to be surrounded by greenery in almost every part of our beautiful green state. Let the ‘pampering’ of the environment not stop after June 5 but let it continue every day. Not every State is blessed with a cool climate like ours. And it is also because of the large tracts of forests which are present that Sohra and Mawsynram receive heavy rainfalls each year.

This is known to the world and many flock to these places to experience the ‘true’ rain showers. But without trees and the forests this rain will also disappear. The elements of nature are interconnected and these should be balanced. We are still known as the Scotland of the East so let us retain that title. Let’s not care about our environment only on World Environment Day or Earth day but on all the 365 days of the year because this is also like a blessing to those people who come to our state to experience the cool and calm climate which they don’t have in most parts of the country. Think about it! Our future also depends on the way we treat our environment.

Yours etc.,

Banmankhraw Lyngdoh,

Shillong -5

School of scandal

 

Editor,

In this age of sophistication, academic excellence is achieved in various ways. While the light of knowledge can come in different ways, it should always be free from falsehoods and illusions. But in Bihar the story of education has been  gloomy for the past several years. It has earned the distinction of being steeped in academic humbug.

 

Education has literally been strangulated in this state. The case of the recent HSLC topper Ruby Rai of Vaishali who does not know how many subjects she had appeared in the examination; who says Prodikal Science is a subject that teaches cookery, has shocked everyone. She could not answer the basic questions of chemistry. The pictures of wall-scrambling by cheat-facilitators in Bihar, which went viral in the social media some months back, had drawn international ridicule.

 

Why has education in Bihar reached this sorry state of affairs? It is illogical to put the blame on the students alone. Are not those leaders who ruled Bihar with the brute force of lawlessness, responsible for this degeneration? One need not dig deeper to feel the stench of political sewage and the subsequent rise of crimes in Bihar for over two decades. This has practically corroded the social and academic fabric that we now witness such shameful instances. Here we have noticed how some political leaders contest elections even from prison. Laloo Prasad Yadav, the RJD chief, who has been topping the chart for  goondaism  in the last two decades, is still holding Bihar to ransom. He has a whole bunch of followers who know no law, but the sound of guns and pistols.  Just a few weeks ago a journalist Rajdeo Ranjan was murdered, allegedly by an RJD’s gangster. The criminality in politics seems to have again come back with a vengeance in the present setup where RJD claims its pound of flesh.

 

It is not strange that Laloo Prasad pushed for his son Tejashwi Yadav, a Class IX passed student  to become the Deputy Chief Minister of the state, while the other son Tej Pratap Yadav is the Minister of Health and Environment. Here the big question is that how come his RJD is not derecognized by the judiciary since it has taken Bihar to the abyss of regression with the alarm of  jungle raj for so many years? Here commoners do not fear the wild animals such as lions, tigers or bears but they are afraid of the ferocious members of political parties who shoot the vulnerable opponents like one shoots birds for fun. One can check out the crime charts and find out who perpetrated crimes for the past twenty years.

 

While its natural for a lay person to point accusing finger at the constitution and the judiciary for allowing criminals to form any number of parties and contest the election, why are the strong clauses not etched on the body of the Constitution to prevent devious characters from contesting the election and holding the seat of power? Didn’t it occur to our Constitution makers that giving a sharp dagger to the inexperienced would be disastrous? Daggers are only wielded by skilful knights whose job is to protect the weak.

 

Te list of the recently elected ministers in Bihar, their portfolios, and their academic qualifications is appalling. Again, the fact that such ineligible rookies and jailbirds in the ministry do not make the mainstream media sit up is mysterious. Of course, one does not doubt that there are countless exceptionally brilliants students, scientists, technocrats, administrators that are produced by this sacred land of Buddha’s enlightenment. Where there is a will there is a way. At one stroke, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar banned alcohol which has dramatically brought down crime rates in Bihar.

Hence it is expected that the state administrative machinery will look into such shameful anomalies in education. It is the Nalanda University of this very Bihar that had for thousands of years attracted knowledge seekers from far off lands. Let the past glory be restored before it is too late.

 

Yours etc.,  

Salil Gewali,

Shillong-2

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