Democracy Under Attack In US

THE United States of America has been a role model for all other nations, which  have  adopted democratic form of governance. But storming  into the Capitol by supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump has outraged US citizens as also people from other countries. Such chaos and violence tarnish the image of the US in the eyes of the world. The United Nations should  take note of the situation, and intervene to quell the undemocratic protests. The UN  should also come out with a model for  election process for democratic countries, factoring in  experiences of   the nations where  such practices and models have succeeded.


Be Vigilant On Bird Flu

THE state government has received an advisory from the Centre on the bird flu scare, and  the animal husbandry department has been notified of the same. The Union minister for animal husbandry, fisheries and dairying has allayed fears of the avian influenza while at the same time has advised people to cook properly meat and poultry products. There have been avian influenza outbreaks in Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Rajasthan where as many as 12  epicentres have been identified. In some places there have been reports of migratory birds dying from bird flu. While some of the affected states have started culling the birds, regulating the sale of poultry and related products, the neighbouring states are keeping a check on the interstate movement of the poultry products especially in the border districts. The central government has issued an advisory in order to contain the spread. The advisory has asked  affected states to disinfect affected areas, proper disposal of dead birds, increased surveillance, besides coordination with the forest department. For neighbouring states, vigilance towards unusual mortality among birds has been advised. Experts have maintained that bird-to-human spread of the viral disease is possible only if the poultry products are not properly cooked. As of now, no cases of bird flu have been reported in Karnataka, but officials have been directed to take all preventive measures. Goa too needs to be vigilant.


Put Up Timetable At Durbhat Jetty

A timetable has been put up at the Adpai jetty in Ponda taluka on the Adpai-Rassaim ferry service for the convenience of commuters. However, such a timetable has not  been put up at the Durbhat jetty, also in Ponda taluka. Consequently, travellers  wanting to go  to Rassaim by crossing  the river on a ferry boarding it  at the Durbhat wharf  are seriously inconvenienced. Hence it would be advisable for the concerned authorities to display a timetable  on the ferry service at the Durbhat jetty at the earliest.


Punish Andhra CM For Attack On Judiciary

THE blatant and vicious attack on the judiciary by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy is totally misplaced and unjustified, and must  be  condemned. After targeting judges of the Andhra High Court, Reddy has gone to the extent of maligning the very reputed Supreme Court judge  Justice N V  Ramana, who will become the next Chief Justice of India on April 24 this year. Is the ruling party at the Centre working in collusion with the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister to unnecessarily malign and tarnish Justice Ramana’s image? The Chief Justice of India Sharad Arvind Bobde himself recently stated that when a person is about to be elevated as a judge or to some higher post, allegations surface to malign the image of such a person.  Justice Bobde cannot abdicate his constitutional duty while continuing to be a mere spectator; he must expeditiously and judicially step in by initiating contempt of court proceedings against the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister for maligning the judiciary and the second senior most  judge of the apex court. Such malicious attacks must be stopped. An attack on the judiciary is also an attack on citizens. In a democracy, unjustified attacks on the judiciary by politicians undermines the bedrock of our democracy, which is the rule of law. It is therefore of paramount importance that we must always have an independent judiciary, with judges who can make decisions independent of political winds that blow. Unscrupulous politicians with their own hidden agendas seeking to undermine the rule of law should reflect and act on the wise words of current President of Israel, Reuven Rivlin, who has said: “There is no, and there cannot be, any situation in which we don’t respect the law and the judiciary. It is unacceptable to attack the courts; criticism is allowed, but attacks are not. It shakes the basis of our democracy.”