Special Treatment to Pacheco
NUVEM MLA Francisco Xavier Pacheco, who is serving a six-month sentence for slapping an engineer from the electricity department, was admitted to Goa Medical College and Hospital with high blood pressure. It is most surprising that these ‘strong men’ who otherwise lead a robust life suddenly fall ill, the moment they enter a prison. High blood pressure affects every second person. And even a normal person, when convicted will experience a rise in blood pressure. If all common convicts are tested for blood pressure and given the same facilities available to Pacheco, I am afraid the GMC will be flooded with convicts with no room for the common man! Time spent by convicts in hospital should not be counted towards fulfillment of the awarded sentence.
ROBERT CASTELLINO, Calangute
Check Bullying, Eve-Teasing in Schools
WITH schools in Goa set to commence after the summer vacation on June 8 and students putting their focus back on their studies, guidelines issued by the department of Education to schools laying emphasis on the two key problems that often inflict the young ones namely bullying and eve teasing need to be appreciated, for quite often the emphasis is only on imparting quality education to the students without realising what problems they tend to encounter in schools and how we need to protect them from the impending problems, which if unaddressed can wreak irreparable damage in their lives. Bullying is one thing that is often witnessed in schools as it is quite common to see some students forming groups and harassing a weaker child. The teachers need to be vigilant and thwart such bids the moment they spot it. Likewise eve-teasing of girls particularly as they grow up should be nipped in the bud. This may not be prevalent within the school premises but the girls on way to school may be targeted by passers-by making life miserable for them, shattering their peace of mind, making them difficult to concentrate on their studies and in the worst case even forcing them to opt out of schools. In my opinion the best advice that the parents as well as the teachers can give to the young children is to always share any of the problems they encounter in schools or in the neighbourhood.
MICHAEL VAZ, Merces
No Effective System to Check Adulteration
CONSIDERING the popularity of the brand, the rancour over Swiss giant Nestle being ordered to withdraw all stocks of nine variants of Maggie instant noodles from the market and also to stop further production, processing, import, distribution and sale with immediate effect by the central food regulator Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) wouldn’t be misplaced. With the alleged presence of lead in excess of permissible level and misleading label of ‘no added MSG’, health ministry has been firmly of the opinion that food safety and standards have not been adhered to by Nestle. For that matter, the host of junk-foods shown a marked preference for by the new generation that flood the retail-outlets in the country, if subjected to a strict analysis, may show a considerable amount of impermissible food colours and harmful ingredients. But it has never been a cause of alarm considering that with the country having opened its floodgates to a virtual MNC swamp in the past few years; it has been observed that global companies that undoubtedly follow the US FDA regulations blithely ignore the legal provisions stipulated while selling their products in Indian market. And now with Singapore and Nepal also banning the ‘two-minute’ noodles imported from India, seriousness of the issue cannot be overlooked! Feeding toxic ingredient to millions of countrymen over the years, the ‘Maggie saga’ has very explicitly exposed India’s pathetic lack of an effective mechanism to check adulteration, misrepresentation, prices and contaminants causing health hazard in eatables. A scary picture indeed! Yet, India’s reaction to such perilous issues in the past hasn’t been all that encouraging.
PACHU MENON, Margao