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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

There Shouldn’t Be Zoos 

ZOOS are a good sight to watch and admire: exotic birds and animals are kept and protected. We see  many of these animals  only on TV and in books. Zoos are also a source of revenue for government by way of entrance tickets. Regrettably, the birds and animals in most cases are kept in dark and small cages and enclosures. The freedom and movement of the fauna and avian is restricted. A majestic lion or tiger in the wild covers tens of kilometres in a day either for food, shelter or partner. But it is pitiable to see them pace a few metres everyday in a zoo. The imported birds and animals need special care and good conditions for their wellbeing, else they suffer diseases and die. Natural disasters such as floods and fires pose dangers to zoo animals and birds. The recent example is the ongoing wildfire in Australia. At least during such calamities the animals have a chance to flee to safer places, but during human-induced incidents there is no escape. The falling of sky lanterns in a zoo in Germany on January  1, 2020 led to the death of dozens of animals. There is no guarantee that the fauna are well looked after or  no hanky-panky takes  place in the zoos. There are cases where the books are cooked, food meant for animals is stolen, disgruntled employees  poison the animals and people jump into animal enclosures as a dare, for selfie or in a drunken stupor. Considering the above problems, zoos should be discarded. This harsh step may be difficult to accept, but I think we should take it as a necessary evil.  Let us save the  animals and birds that are caught, trapped and tortured and kept for humans to view. Organisations such as Blue Cross, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and others should play a pivotal role in helping the governments to end the concept of zoos. The alternative to zoos could be a museum of taxidermy where people could view the models of animals and birds.

SRIDHAR D’ IYER, CARANZALEM

Bane Of Double Parking

THE explosion of vehicle population has become a big nuisance. Vehicles are parked on either side of our narrow roads, inconveniencing motorists and  pedestrians in the state capital. To cap it all,   there is double parking of four-wheelers: owners  leave  the tail light or an emergency lights ‘on’. Sometimes  drivers leave  their vehicles keeping  the steering wheel even in the hands of minors and women who do not possess driving licences. Traffic police do not clamp  vehicles  which cause congestion on almost all city roads. The traffic police should take strict action against those who resort to double parking. Traffic  congestion must be put to an end in the city.

STEPHEN DIAS, DONA PAULA

Duplication Of RTI Act

THE Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday directed all its departments to implement the national RTI Act, 2005. However, if the national act is implemented in the Union territory then the Jammu and Kashmir RTI Act, 2009, will lose its relevance. Therefore the Jammu and Kashmir government should repeal its own RTI act. Several states, including Delhi, have their irrelevant RTI acts which   were legislated prior to  the implementation of the national RTI Act in  2005. These state-level legislations have not yet been repealed, putting  unnecessary burden on  the system and resources. The department of personnel and training of the Centre  should write to all states, including Delhi, to repeal RTI acts of individual states.

SUBHASH CHANDRA AGRAWAL, DELHI

Goa’s Shame On Sham From UP

AN imposter claimed to be a minister from Uttar Pradesh along with his accomplices, hoodwinked the state administration availing free of cost all government facilities such as accommodation and vehicles including a personal security officer. However, he landed in the clutches of the crime branch after the conman himself revealed that he had pulled a fast one on the Goa administration while boasting about it in an inebriated state in a pub. The state government has a lot to answer for the lax protocols which allows conmen like Sunil Singh to cock a snook  at the administration. That the travesty continued for more than ten days without the authorities having any inkling about the antecedents of the fraudsters makes it further embarrassing for the government. Are officials at the state’s protocol department so complacent that they find no need whatsoever to verify the credentials of a VIP guest before permitting him the luxuries of a hospitable stay at the government’s cost! It is all the more shocking to hear that the ‘indulgence’ did not end there. The phony ‘cooperation minister’ from UP not only met top ministers and ruling party politicians from Goa, but also had the gall to attend a co-operative society function in Canacona! One can only take solace from the fact that the whole episode was only a case of simple impersonation where the culprits were out to have some good time. But how can the officials at the department explain their ‘willingness’ to be taken for a ride and fall for such stupid deceptions? Apparently Goa is quite flippant about terror threat perceptions it has been warned about and appears to be wading into a disaster of sorts. Keeping abreast of the latest technologies, terrorist groups are known to  stay a step ahead of the security agencies and strike at will. Imagine a situation where a handful of terrorists secure in the knowledge that the government authorities will not be able to see through their counterfeit documents manage to wrest the initiative and hold the state to ransom.

A dreadful thought but one that nevertheless has a ring of possibility around it! At least the ‘UP minister’ fiasco has made this more than evident!  

PACHU MENON, MARGAO

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