The long wait for conviction
SIR,  ~ Rajinder Puri&’s article, “Politics of convicted MPs” (3 October), is excellent. His suggestion that hearing in all court cases should be completed in six months is welcome and deserves to be followed up.
  The country will  be better served if the honest are elected to Parliament and the state assemblies. Mr. Puri is right when he asserts that speedy justice can punish the guilty; otherwise the tainted “leaders” will continue to take  advantage of time.
The portents are ominous in the land of Swami Vivekananda, Netaji, Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi. It took 17 years to convict Lalu  and 23 years in the case of Rashid Masood, During which time they benefited from judicial ethics ~ “Let a million guilty be punished, but not an innocent one.”
Both Lalu and Masood remained  “innocent” for years in the eye of the Law. After being convicted, both have lost their membership of Parliament. Rightly has   Mr. Puri asked: “What kind of fight against corruption and cleansing of Parliament is that?”
At  present,  there  are  many  MPs  accused  of  corruption  and  misuse  of  government  funds.  Will  they  be unseated  from  Parliament  if  they  are  convicted  much later?  That,  to  quote  Mr  Puri,  will  call  for  “serious  judicial reform”. And this is significant.
yours, etc., rupam guha, kolkata, 4 october.
Modi to Rahul
SIR, ~ The national focus has distinctly shifted from Narendra Modi to Rahul Gandhi after the latter&’s ‘nonsense Ordinance’ remark. The Ordinance has now been withdrawn, if not “torn up and thrown away”. In the months ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the campaign in favour of  Rahul and against Modi  is likely to be  stepped up.
yours, etc., anil kumar choudhury, kalyani, 3 october.
Frowning Hills
SIR, ~ This refers to the report, “Hill politics leads to losses”  (4 October).  After a meeting with Bimal Gurung and Roshan Giri two years ago,  Mamata Banerjee had proclaimed that the “hills are smiling”.  The Gorkhaland movement  has been renewed again, threatening the economy of Darjeeling, in particular the industries of tea and tourism.   Over  the past few years, there has been a sharp fall in the number of tourists; a large number of bookings have been cancelled during the Pujas. The hospitality industry is likely to suffer a huge loss as will the tea estates,  the orange plantations and the woolens  segment.  This year, the weather was suitable for tea production,  but the political weather is precarious. It has been estimated that the tea industry will lose almost 25-35 per cent of its production.
yours, etc., gokul burman, chakdaha (nadia), 4 october.
Western literature
SIR, ~  In the second half of the 19th century, Western literature attained prominence in India. European authors wrote on social and religious issues and the scourge of cruelty towards women. New styles of poetry and verse emerged, marked by simplicity of language. Dramas, short stories and novels became very popular.
   Western literature defied many orthodox beliefs and refused to subscribe to the views of the conservative leaders. They criticized the existing religious practices, rooted out superstitions and ignorance, and above all, fostered a sense of rationalism. Western literature ushered in a period of renaissance. Many social evils were rooted out and we learnt a new style of writing.
yours,  etc.,  sauro  dasgupta,  (class  VIII a, mangalam vidyaniketan school), kolkata, 4 october.