The forebears

* This refers to 'AAP versus VIP' by Shekhar Gupta (IE, January 4). Our elected representatives generally show no sense of humility and forget that they are the servants of the people. Some former Central ministers such as George Fernandes and former prime minister I.K. Gujral stand out as the exceptions to the rule. They were rarely seen accompanied by a posse of security personnel when they were defence minister and foreign minister respectively. Similarly, in Andhra Pradesh, the late Vavilala Gopalakrishnayya, an independent MLA, and the celebrated communist leader P. Sundarayya could be seen walking or cycling to the assembly from their MLA quarters. Doing away with red beacons is the first step to rid the country of VIP culture, which has flourished at great public expense.

M.K.D. Prasada Rao

Ghaziabad

Dividends and curses

* This refers to the editorial 'The missing agenda' (IE, January 6). Indeed, the unemployment rate is far too high for comfort. This should be a matter of embarrassment for a country which has excellent growth potential because of its demographic advantage. This "dividend" will become a curse if it is not utilised properly. A change in the labour laws should be at the forefront of the agenda of the new government.

Krupa Bhandari

Mumbai

Taking off

* This refers to 'ISRO launches GSLV-D5, puts India in cryogenic club' (IE, January 6). Kudos to all the Indian scientists associated with ISRO. Their perseverance has won laurels for India, making it the sixth nation in the world to master the technology of developing cryogenic engines. It is heartening that the GSAT-14, India's communication satellite, was successfully placed in the orbit by the GSLV-D5. It marks a historic beginning for 2014. This success could also boost skill development and become a source of constant encouragement for the scientists of our space research programme. Finally, our success with developing a cryogenic engine could go a long way in saving precious foreign exchange.

... contd.

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