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Demand for more trains to Garo Hills

Editor,

I read with great interest the news item, “Demand for more trains in Mendipathar” made by the A’chik Indigenous Justice Initiative Forum. This proves that the introduction of the railhead in Garo Hills has greatly benefited the people there and tremendously boosted its economy. The train service to this part of Garo Hills was inaugurated by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, on November 30, 2014 and since then train services have never been interrupted even once. I visited Mendipathar Railway Station  in the early morning of October 7, 2017 and discovered that the train service starts at 7 am and reaches Guwahati at 11 am carrying passengers and goods -,mainly agricultural, horticultural and other produce from Garo Hills that the passengers can carry with them. The train returns at 5 pm to reach Mendipathar at about 9 pm. The train fare is just Rs 30 each way Till date there is are complaints at all from the Garos that the advent of trains to Garo Hills has brought about influx of migrants from other parts of India or illegal migrants from foreign counties to disturb the demography of Garo Hills and other adverse effects. In fact the Railway Station is brimming with business transactions right from 5 till 8-9 am in the morning every day and similarly in the evenings. The Station is very clean and tidy including the railway platforms, the offices and the ticket counters.

The advent of the railhead in this part of Garo Hills has really proved to be a blessing to the people. It is high time that the people of Khasi and Jaintia Hills should realise this fact, learn from Garo Hills, soften the stance and allow the railhead to come to Khasi-Jaintia Hills to reap the rich blessings from the advent of the railways. Some minor disadvantages may be there, like the loss of some tracks of land due to acquisition by the Railways, but with proper care, vigilance and pre-emptive measures these disadvantages will be converted into advantages. I therefore strongly advocate for the immediate introduction of the railway lines into Khasi-Jaintia Hills because, as I see it, the advantages far exceed the disadvantages.

Yours etc.,

Philip Marwein,

Via email

Relief from draconian law

Editor,

The Supreme Court of India had on July 27, 2017 issued new set of directions including the creation of Family Welfare Committees in every district, which would verify the allegations of dowry harassment received by the police or magistrate to prevent misuse of Section  498A of the IPC. The Court said that the arrest of a person could only be made after the report of the Committee is received.

 In the present situation there are many instances when super-ambitious girls/women, after having intimate relationship with men start insisting that they book them a flat as a pre-condition for solemnizing their marriage but with the vile intention of separating them from their aged parents. After marriage, having failed to emotionally black-mail the husband they start making concocted and fake allegations in the name of dowry torture and of domestic violence against the husband, in-laws with constant threats of divorce keeping an eye on the alimony/maintenance demand. A major section of the innocent male-folk of the country are trapped by this primordial attributes of women ostensibly in a love-game. This has affected the men adversely and ruined their reputation and careers as well. Some have even gone into depression and suffer from serious mental health problems. This has resulted in a growing societal imbalance and unrest.

Therefore the order of removal of the buffer, made by the Apex Court on Friday September 14, against immediate arrest in dowry harassment cases by modifying its earlier order to set up a Committee to examine the complaints of married women before taking coercive action against husband and in-laws is commendable. The order has also provided a great relief from the draconian law in consonance with the letter and spirit of the Article 14 (Equality before law) of the Constitution of India.

Yours etc.,

Samares Bandyopadhyay,

Advocate, Kolkata High Court

Police should check polluting vehicles

 Editor,

We are now in the 21st century and we know the bad impacts of carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide. In the past two decades the government also has been putting extra stress in the school syllabi on this aspect so children learn from an early age about the environmental hazards due to carbon emission by motor vehicles.

Alas! One fails to figure out why there is complete slackness from the concerned government departments themselves in enforcing the rules. Several vehicles running around the city leave behind a trail of dark, thick cloud of smokes. One notices such vehicles are doing this with all impunity. Just a week back, on my way  from Police Bazar to Nongthymmai, I noticed three vehicles spewing out heavy cloud of smoke. Could this not be checked by instructing the traffic police who are usually on their toes to catch the offenders? Why do the senior police officers not wise up their juniors who are deployed in the streets to penalise such vehicles? Police need not stop all the running vehicles and cause further chaos on the road, but they can pull up those which are emitting black smoke.

The irritatingly fact with the traffic in the town is that drivers carry up-to-date pollution papers but the vehicles generously emit hazardous smoke. Does it not show that there must be a back-street at the office of the State Pollution Control Board? So, I urged upon the head of the State Pollution Control Board to warn the corrupt staff in his establishment. The “true responsibility” of the Pollution Board should not go up in smoke. The public too should demand the “right” to breathe clean air with ease. Hence police must enforce the laws and not choke the heart of the city.

Yours etc.,

Salil Gewali,

Shillong -2

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