Assam Civil Society
On 13th February, at ITA centre, Machkhowa, the conclave of the Assam Civil Society was organized where some known self-declared intellectuals were the prominent speakers. As the name suggests the conclave was supposed to be apolitical one, but all the invited speakers spoke like political party spokespersons. Their prime target was the BJP government. For some moments the audience like me got confused. I had a feeling whether I am attending the seminar of Assam Civil Society or an election rally of a political party. The speakers tried to highlight the burning problems of the State, but they skipped encroachment of xatra lands by people of suspected nationalities, encroachment of sars and saporis in the districts of lower Assam, threat for the indigenous people who are reduced to minority on their own land in districts like Goalpara, Dhubri, Morigaon, Nagaon, Barpeta, etc. At the fag-end I doubted if such seminars are funded from the foreign enemy territories as the election is approaching. Such so-called intellectuals at the meeting might be the sleeper cells of some external forces with dubious intention.
Voter identity cards
Through your estimated daily I want to highlight that voting is the basic right for every adult citizen. This is the major responsibility for all people to choose the right government for the country. The Assam Assembly election is nearing. But some people who have newly applied for voter cards have not received the same as yet. Some applicants have got their names on the voter list and got their EPIC (electors photo identity card) number too, but they have not yet received their voter cards. E-EPIC download facility is available for the newly registered electors after November 2020 during SSR 2021 with unique mobile number only.
For others this downloading facility for voter cards is not available for now. So it is my humble request to the authority to provide this facility to all the people who have applied for voter identity cards.
Women's safety in Pink Bus
Through the columns of your esteemed newspaper, I would like to draw the attention towards the introduction of 'Pink Bus' service in Guwahati on 16th January 2021 by the ASTC for women and senior citizens of the State. It is launched under Bhraman Sarathi Scheme as a free and dedicated bus service. Many women confessed that it has created a sense of comfort and safety among them, especially for the college going students and women who work late. However, I personally witnessed that some conductors allow middle-aged men to travel. Although it was mentioned that IDs will be checked for men, the bus crew is ignorant to the rule. I hope that the government officials keep this in check so as to avoid problems in future. It is suggested that at least the conductor should be a woman so as to maintain a sense of safety among the women travellers of 'Pink Bus'.
It's time to ban Twitter in India as the platform is losing its credibility. What are we witnessing? Paid tweets, scripted news items and mastermind tweets, fake accounts that spread communal hatred and create violation etc. All these are causing more harm to our society than help in any particular manner.
Chandan Kumar Nath,
Honorary Consulates and Embassies
The Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the Vienna Convention of Diplomatic Relations mandate the establishment of Honorary Consulates and full-fledged foreign Embassies across various cities of the world. The Honorary Consulates and Embassies function effectively to bridge educational, scientific, cultural, consular, and trade ties of the home country with the foreign country.
India should now take a surge in leading from the front to foster new and strong diplomatic relationships with more number of its counterparts in the European Union, ASEAN countries, Asia Pacific countries, Middle East nations, African and American countries. There is a need to take forward this relationship with the establishment of new Honorary Consulates and full-fledged Embassies in New Delhi and across other popular cities such as Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkatta, and Mumbai.
It is also ironic to note that many popular cities such as Bengaluru (the IT Hub) do not have enough diplomatic representations through full-fledged Consulate offices of countries such as the United States of America, Australia, Singapore, New Zealand, South Korea, Sweden, Thailand, etc, to name a few. Further, the Standing Committee on External Affairs should work in tandem with the Ministry of External Affairs and take positive steps to recommend the establishment of new Honorary Consulates and Embassies across India.
Noise pollution should be reduced
In the country, while CBSE and State Board Class X and XII examinations are going to start from March-May, pre-board examinations are starting from February-March. In this way, these days are very important for the education of children. Their hard work throughout the year is more dependent on the studies being done these days as the students are studying with full vigour and concentration due to the annual examinations. These days are a do-or-die situation for them but students can take full advantage of these days only if they get a learning environment. So these days where on the one hand teachers, students and parents are serious about their children's education, on the other hand loudspeakers and DJs playing in different places are spreading noise pollution, as well as on children's education. This is extremely bad. Such noises distract children. Their mind wanders away from studies. There is a good study environment in the morning and evening, and at the same time loudspeakers and DJs spoil the study environment. Therefore, it is imperative that the government and the administration impose a complete ban on loudspeakers on exam days so as not to jeopardize the education of the students. They can read by heart. On the other hand, people should consider it their moral responsibility to keep the volume of loudspeakers, DJs, etc. soft during the months of February, March and April so that the students do not face any difficulty while studying and prepare well for their examinations. In this regard, the administration should take the court orders regarding loudspeakers seriously. Students and their parents should first explain to the administrators if there are loud speakers or DJs playing somewhere. If they still do not reduce the noise, the administration should be informed immediately so that the noise of the speakers and DJs can be silenced and the noise pollution can be reduced.
A former Principal, Malout
Opening of SPMCIL counter
The first-ever sale counter for commemorative silver alloy coins was opened on 20.01.2020 at office of Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) at Jawahar Vyapar Bhawan (Janpath - New Delhi) with 19 such coins put on direct sale without any advance booking. Sale should be through credit and debit cards also.
But just one sale counter in a big country with population of 135 crore is not at all enough. Sale of commemorative coins and coin sets should be facilitated at counters of select branches of private and public sector banks by giving them sale commission right from date of issue of commemorative coins abolishing age old practice of advance booking of coin sets by sending demand drafts for getting coin sets several months after issue of coins.
Face value can be kept about twice the prevailing metal value in the coin. These coins, never-to-come in actual circulation, then should be sold in serial numbered sealed plastic cover to prevent chances of fake coins. Sale of silver in round shaped coin design by private manufacturers should be banned. All such steps will be a boon for coin collectors, and provide huge net revenue earning to government because such higher value coins never come in actual circulation. Coin sets should be sold in only one highest priced category with issued coins in all denominations for coin collectors.