Articles and letters may be edited for the purposes of clarity and space. They are published in good faith with a view to enlightening all the stakeholders. However, the contents of these writings may not necessarily match the views of the newspaper.
Indian farmers and PM Modi
The Indian farmers’ crisis has hit world headlines with the U.S. and British governments asking the Modi government to resolve the issue. A standoff near New Delhi between tens of thousands of farmers, particularly those from Indian Punjab and Haryana, and the Modi government continues.
Three so-called reform bills were passed in September 2020 that have deregulated the buying and selling of agricultural goods. The initially peaceful demonstrations turned violent when the government began baton charging, water cannons and tear-gas.
The bills were bulldozed through parliament without a chance for the opposition or other stakeholders to review them. Of the three bills, the first forces farmers to deal directly with corporations and private buyers, the second bill pushes re-negotiation of farmers’ buy-sell contracts with huge corporations and private buyers, and the third removes certain key commodities such as onions, potatoes, edible oils and pulses from the essential commodities’ list.
Since 80% of India’s farmers are small farmers, they don’t have the ability to compete or negotiate with powerful corporations. This potentially gives rich investors the opportunity to manipulate market prices at their will and whim. Debt-ridden farmers have had to turn over their ancestral lands. Farmers have taken huge loans to pay for irrigation, fertilisation and pesticides but are trapped in a cycle of debt and in the past some have resorted to suicide.
Almost five months into the protests which include the elderly farmers, their women and children in freezing cold weather to defend their livelihoods and with limited food and water, the government stubbornly refuses to stand down and there is as yet no end in sight. Delhi Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal has warned the Modi government that the new farm laws are “death warrants” for the small farmers and these should be repealed.
SAAD MAQBOOL BHATTY
Black-hearted human beings
We live in a world where your one wicked action can ravage your all good deeds. A few days ago while I was scrutinizing something about human psychology, I found out something new and set my mind to research whether in our society is it verily the case that one evil act can vitiate all good ones? Accordingly, I batted around with a friend of mine and set his mind at rest that we would make an excuse on Twitter with a view to starting a frivolous discussion to get a glimpse that how people will react and will they forget our all good deeds over one unethical act?
As we started arguing in Twitter, a number of people got engaged in conversation with me and said, “We didn’t know that you are so ill-mannered”. I was wildly feeling miserable that time, but I put up with everyone as a mean to catch a glimpse that how many people would call us uncouth?
A large number of people made fun of us in various ways and we just endured those moments. Frankly speaking, 80% said we were pig-ignorant and only 20% said nothing and some from those twenty percent were our friends who earlier on knew that we were pretending to cross swords in furtherance of checking people’s reaction. To make shorter, people shouldn’t forget all good feats of an individual over one wicked action because it makes him or her extremely heart-rending, it also lowers human intentions towards good doings in view of the fact that everyone prefers one immoral act to a thousand good deeds and to talk about my experience, I was racking with pain in the cycle of acting to do a nefarious action.
DILSHAD BALUCH SAJIDI
I am writing to your good-self to express my deep anguish over the unrelenting problem of child labour in our country. I feel a little attention of yours towards the problem will be enough to initiate new campaign in eradicating the problem.
The problem of child labour is quite widespread across Pakistan. In spite of the many anit-child labour laws, the problem continues to spoil the life of thousands of children. The adverse effects of this problem affect the growth, development and progress of our nation.
Not only millions of underage children are forced to work in factories, shops, glass-blowing industry, workshops, etc., they are paid the minimum of wages. According to Census data, there are over 11 million child labourers (aged between 5 – 14 years) in Pakistan. Our country needs more and more skilled manpower to achieve the objectives of growth, development and advancement. With so many millions of children working menial jobs, without education, how can Pakistan achieve her goals?
Through the medium of your esteemed daily, I appeal to the Government to take some proactive and stringent measures to stop this problem and ensure education for them. Undoubtedly there are many laws against child labour, however, their poor implementation is responsible for the continuation of the problem.