It has become clear that only vaccines can halt the pandemic’s devastating march across the world (Page 1, “Russia inks pact to test, supply Sputnik V vaccine to India”, September 17). With two vaccines entering the third phase of their development in India, public expectations about their imminent arrival, post-approval, are running high. The novel coronavirus entered the country unexpectedly and caught the government off guard. With the vaccines, however, the government has ample time to prepare for a comprehensive policy to ensure universal coverage with a time-bound plan of action. As India is a leading vaccine manufacturer, it will pose a challenge to balance domestic commitments and international obligations. It is desirable that the government announces its strategies for mass immunisation upfront to facilitate scrutiny and the ironing out of expected glitches, especially on pricing.
It is puzzling how a television channel got the go-ahead in the first place to air a programme (Editorial, “Stop press”, September 17) that amounted to vilification of a minority community in India when a broadcasting code is in place to regulate the contents of the broadcast beforehand. Unless, of course, there are powerful backers in the government for the controversial broadcast to have gone ahead. The signal seems to be an intent to lead a hate campaign against the minorities by all possible means without any let up, hindrance or second thought to the fabric of harmonious relations that have existed and continue to exist for centuries between different religious groups in India. Is there no end to this spread of hate?
Amid the simmering controversy over drug use in the film industry, it is unfortunate that the issue has found its way to Parliament and with a new hue (Inside pages, “Sushant case media coverage heartless, says Trinamool MP”, September 17). The mudslinging and war of words are sad as the film industry is in a state of open war. The effort must be to have a clean, honest and transparent cleanup, with the guilty and the big fish punished.
The allegations and counter allegations between two Members of Parliament on the alleged drugs trade in high places was odd. Both MPs should maintain their self respect as a Member of Parliament and uphold the dignity of the august House.
Cultural icon and a connoisseur of the fine arts, Kapila Vatsyayan who passed away (Inside pages, September 17) has left an indelible imprint on the country’s cultural firmament with her rich contributions in multifarious disciplines. Mentored by two legends, Rukmini Devi Arundale and Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay, she went on to carve her own niche.
Her several books on the fine arts were the result of extensive research of the country’s rich and hoary cultural heritage. She hardly hankered after publicity or recognition and always preferred to let her work speak for itself. In her passing, the country has lost one of its greatest cultural icons, whose life and work will serve as a beacon for generations to come.
India has lost a leading scholar of Indian classical dance, architecture, and art history. Her service as the founding director of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts was commendable. One only hopes that her ideas will continue to resonate in the new India.