26 Letters

posted Mar 14, 2018, 8:46 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Mar 14, 2018, 8:46 AM ]

A view on Women's Day

Sir, Even as we celebrate Women's Day, one cannot help but feel excited about the different offers that clothing brands and restaurants are offering. Which leads to only one conclusion— even in our celebration of women, we have become victims of class systems. Women who can afford branded clothes and to eat outside are not the only kind that are there. What about our rural women, our women on the street, our women in brothels? This day is not to be celebrated. O No, this is a day for protesting, for making our voices heard. 


'Cycle Priest' from Rajkot

Sir, This is in reference to an article I read recently about Fr Vinod Kanatt of Rajkot's Junagadh parish who quit his government job in 2008, after 10 years of service as Principal, and joined the priesthood. The parish he serves is managed by the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate congregation.

People often spot him rushing on his cycle on the rugged mud paths of villages and the tarred roads of Rajkot town, hence the nickname - 'cycle priest'. Fr Kanatt visits every Catholic family on all important occasions; he is always the first outside the family to know if any one is sick. In some cases, he even accompanies the sick to the hospital and the family members get to know of it only later. He regularly visits the elderly, and does all that he can to help the needy by providing for their food, medicine and their spiritual needs. It is a challenge for priests to visit homes once a year under obligation, but his commitment and dedication towards his vocation is commendable. The parishioners are so confident about his support, that no matter the situation, he is just a call away. He was first appointed to the parish in 2008, but was transferred after six years of service in 2014. However, he was re-appointed, following the parishioners' demand. For them, their pastor is always there with them for everything.


Poverty of Indigenous people

Sir, This refers to 'Poverty of Indigenous people raises questions' (The Examiner, dated Mar 10-16). As Fr Nicholas Baria has pointed out, the problem of Adivasis living in extremely poor conditions continues to exist. Adivasis played a major role in the fight against colonial rule and the feudal system, but their efforts have been downplayed by every government that has ruled the country post-Independence. Politicians admit that despite forming a sizeable chunk of the population, they are a neglected lot.

Observers claim that the Forest Rights Act (FRA) and the provisions under the Fifth and Sixth Schedules of the Constitution were not being carried out in true spirit. Picking out Adivasis of the Bastar region in Chhattisgarh, they say that the neo-liberal policy of the State government is emboldening the capitalists to venture into forest areas and tribal habitations. In Bastar alone, about 14 corporate companies have made inroads in the name of mining.


Church on 'Passive Euthanasia'

Sir, On March 9, 2018, the Supreme Court of India legalised 'Passive Euthanasia' - The Right to Life includes the Right to Die! (The Times Of India (TOI), March 10). The Kerala Catholic Bishops Council (KCBC), however, came out against the Supreme Court's verdict commenting that the decision was painful, objectionable, and could be misused (TOI, pg. 23).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) states: "Discontinuing medical procedures that are burdensome, dangerous, extraordinary, or disproportionate to the expected outcome, can be legitimate. It is only the refusal of 'over-zealous' treatment. Here, one does not will to cause death; only one's inability to impede it is merely accepted. The decision should be made by the patient if competent or if not, by those legally entitled to act for the patient, whose reasonable will and legitimate interest must always be respected." (CCC 2278-2279) 


BMC road repairs

Sir, It's nothing new but a known fact that round the year, and for so many years, the road digging work happens all across the city, except for a break during monsoons. The road digging work is taken up for various purposes at the same places—sometimes it could be cabling work, water pipeline, Mahanagar Gas, tar road being converted to concrete or vice versa.


Organic Farming

Sir, Organic agriculture is a production system that sustains the health of soils, ecosystem and people. It relies on ecological processes, biodiversity and cycles adapted to local conditions, rather than the use of inputs with adverse effects. Organic agriculture combines tradition, innovation and science to benefit the shared environment and promote fair relationships and a good quality of life for all involved. For a PowerPoint Presentation on Organic Farming, click the link http://infantjesusjogeshwari.in/gem-ppt-17-organic-farming/