Shraddhanand Martyrdom Day as a public holiday
BJP led central government should honour Swamy Shraddhanand by declaring his martyrdom day of 25th December as a gazetted holiday to respect the sentiments of millions of Arya Samajists, without practically adding a holiday because the day is already a holiday for Christmas. The building where Swami Shraddhanand breathed his last is in the congested Shraddhanand Marg (Naya Bazar) of Old Delhi. The government should acquire this building to convert it into a national monument in memory of this great freedom-fighter whose activities were of prime importance not only for the freedom struggle but also for the uplift of downtrodden, Dalits and women.
Swami Shraddhanand though being a disciple of Arya-Samaj founder Maharishi Dayanand Saraswati, was an icon of national integration against the British regime. He was the only non-Islamic leader having been invited to address from the historic Jama Masjid of Delhi as unity-symbol of all Indians to fight for the independence of their country against the British. His boldness to challenge the British police to fire on his bare chest in front of the Town Hall at Chandni Chowk in Delhi, made the Congress party to gather around him for its Delhi session in the British era where leaders like Motilal Nehru, Dadabhai Noroji acknowledged him as bravest leader of those times.
– Subhash Chandra Agrawal
Airlines should build good relationships with customers
The recent issue of charging for web check-in seats by an airline seems to have taken the government by surprise. Such a move comes at a time when the Government is caught off-guard as it is too busy looking up to Tatas-Jet Airways-Etihad Airlines merger deal and its own issues related to stake sale of Indian Airlines. The issue of charging exorbitant ticket fares in the guise of recent ATF price rise, UDF at some airports, the inevitable GST component added to the basic ticket fares seems to have taken a back seat amidst gloom in the Indian aviation market.
While the rail fares are comparably reasonable and affordable, with the exception of time frame to reach a destination; the railway fares are approved under coaching tariff component by the Indian Railway Conference Association under the aegis of Railway Board and Ministry of Railways. It is ironical to note that even Ministry of Civil Aviation, DGCA and AERA are reluctant to play such a big brother role to keep an eye on such kind of exorbitant charges being levied with much publicity. The airlines in the guise of mounting losses and in a bid to make a faster brand presence in the market are quick to snatch every opportunity citing peak and non-peak season fares, festival fares, year-end sale, inaugural fares etc.
Hence an umbrella body like AERA needs to take up immediate, necessary and stringent steps to ensure fair ticket pricing including seat allotment tweaks adopted by some airlines. The blocking of seat by an extra amount itself burns a deep hole in the consumers’ pocket and hence the concept of web check-in, which otherwise should ease check-in process, will only lead to further complication. Instead of taking the consumers’ morale for granted for the want of space in the Indian skies, the airlines otherwise need to invest their strategy highly in an innovative way to build a strong relationship with the customers both in-flight and on the ground.
– Varun Dambal
Youngster motorcycle accident: Driving without a helmet
The death of a 21-year-old in Nerul opens up the Pandora’s Box for the need of wearing a helmet while driving. The protective headgear certainly reduces the severity of the impact on the brain. Unfortunately, the majority still prefer a severely injured brain to a fractured helmet. They don’t realise that head injuries occurring in those wearing helmets are almost never critical, provided they were a quality helmet, preferably an ISI mark helmet. The National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience, Bangalore has also confirmed that the severity of head injury, death due to head injury, the incidence of skull fracture and occurrence of post-traumatic epilepsy were higher among those who were not using the helmet as compared to those who did. City Police have taken the lead and it is a right step in the right direction to wear a helmet and safeguard the head from fatal injuries.
– Nikhil Krishnan
Carry on Kartarpur mission
Kartarpur marks not just the reopening of a route closed by the Partition, but also the beginning of an unprecedented form of diplomacy between Indian and Pakistan. Thanks to Navjot Sidhu for another great opening innings that kindled the fire to go in for a mission.
Kartarpur Sahib in Pakistan is located across the river Ravi, about four kilometres from the Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district. It was established by the Sikh Guru in 1522. The first Gurdwara, Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib, was built here, where Guru Nanak Dev is said to have died.
But all Credit for this goes to our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi as the saying goes Modi means business. Go East, Go West, Narendra Modi is the best. Our PM Shri Narendra Modi is the person who can dare to take hard decisions like Demonetisation, GST, Surgical strike and even Kartarpur corridor. It is better to make a try rather than not to take no-decision as the UPA government was doing for a decade.
This is a corridor to the shrine of peace, harmony and humanism, to the universal vision of a world as one family, to the service to humanity. This is a corridor that opens new doors. It is a path that opens up new possibilities. In a world that is increasingly torn with narrow tunnel vision, bigotry and dogmatism, a world that is being fragmented and divided, a world that is witnessing needless violence and endless conflicts, we need all the strength to dispel the darkness that constantly threatens to envelop individuals, communities and nations.
We want good relationships with all our neighbours. But India will never accept terrorism; it will not help those who send terrorists to India. It just shows that India-Pakistan relations can change very quickly, and change over issues which are not expected to take a final shape. Both PM Modi and Pakistan PM Imran Khan are putting “bitterness” between the countries aside for Sikh Pilgrims and that is a good beginning for strengthening the relationship in future.
Finally, the concept of a “faith corridor” for pilgrims itself is unusual, as cross-border human corridors are usually used for refugee crises and anti-terror operations, and the Kartarpur corridor may set a precedent for other such cases in the future and that will in turn help to bring peace in the sub-continent.
– Anandambal Subbu