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Readers' Mail

In support of community living

Sir, - This refers to the article `Community living for the elders' ( The Hindu , September 30). As observed by the organisers, the present order of society demands community living for seniors. There are several instances where children do not bother to take care of their parents, for no fault of either. In the fast changing present-day life, one has fewer chances of taking care of one's own affairs. As for parents, they expect more from their children, which they seldom get. Besides, the elders need to lead a peaceful life in the evening of their lives. This would help them contribute to society. Also, a tension-free life can make the aged more healthy and happy. Hence, the elders have to be more courageous to leave the existing family ties and venture to be part of community living. But, in the process it should be remembered that community living should not be construed as an `old age home' where children leave their parents for `upkeep'. The elders also should strive to strengthen their ties with their family and society through community living. The ongoing reforms and the change of mindset in society require many such changes and, perhaps, community living may be a beginning in the positive direction.

C.P. Velayudhan Nair

Kochi

Goshree permits

This has reference to the inauguration of the Goshree Bridge that links Parur-Vypin-Munambam (Palliport), a long-cherished dream of Kochiites.

Keeping the development of the surrounding area in mind, people from both sides of this bridge, including the islands of Bolghatty, Vallarpadam, etc., have contributed their mite by giving land.

However, the maximum utilisation of this bridge is possible only if the existing roads are repaired. It is understood that 107 private buses that ply in the other sector would be extended to Ernakulam. The authorities should ensure that the roads are good enough to bear the traffic load. The bus services may be extended to the city, at least a few of them, so that majority of the people from Vypeen side can reach their offices in morning hours.

My memory goes back to 50 years ago, when for the whole area of Vypeen islands right from Pallipuram-Munambam, the only available water transport was `Lord Hari', a boat of 300-person capacity. The old generation has sweet memories of `Lord Hari' plying/crossing through the so-called `Veerampuzha' and reaching Ernakulam with luggage for the market day, the duration of travel being about 4 hours. The present link is something beyond our imagination.

Keeping the importance of this link in mind, I request the authorities concerned to ensure the safety of the roads before giving sanction to private buses to ply.

Davis Vithayathil

Thripunithura

Child labour

Sir, - Another October 2 has come and gone. As usual, school children were made to clean up the premises of the Government buildings, schools, hospitals and roads.

It is a shame that the Government looks up to children as a source of cheap labour. They are made to finish the work callously left behind by Government employees who were paid to do the job.

Children do not learn anything from one or two days in a year of menial work done. Exploitation should not be seen as work experience. And inefficiency of the paid cleaning staff should not be seen as an opportunity to teach children.

Ranjit Grover

Thripunithura

Unhygienic practice

Sir, - This has reference to a photograph on the third page of The Hindu dated October 3. The photograph shows NCC cadets from various city schools participating in a cleaning programme as a part of Gandhi Jayanti celebrations. There is also another photograph of a cleaning programme in Mumbai on on page 11.

No doubt, the students are engaged in a noble social service. However, they remove the dirt and filth with bare hands facing the danger of contracting infection. Diseases such as rat fever are quite common, nowadays. Students participating in such cleaning work should be provided disposable protective hand gloves.

P.T. Abraham

Changampuzha Nagar

* * *
Readers may send letters to the following

e-mail address: letters.kochi

@thehindu.co.in

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