Letters to the Editor – April 2024

The obit piece “Age had dimmed neither the vigour nor intensity of Fali Nariman,” by Sriram Panchu is a fitting tribute to the almost ‘infallible’ lawyer. I believe the one regret he had in his career as a jurist was representing Union Carbide in the Bhopal gas tragedy case of 1984. Congrats on featuring the ‘two gentle giants’ who passed away recently.

Reginald Wesley, RC Mysore West — D 3181

Good issue! Plenty of reading material on various subjects in addition to Rotary projects and activities. The Wordsworld column by Sandhya Rao provided good read. The name of publisher and price of the books reviewed would be helpful. Looking forward to more articles on a wide variety of books in Rotary News.

Radheshyam Modi, RC Akola — D 3030

An exemplary train man

With confidence, love for the people, colleagues and the organisation you work for, ­achieving anything is possible as ­exemplified by Vande Bharat train designer ­Sudhanshu Mani.

As GM of ICF-Chennai, his angst for producing an advanced Indian train put Vande Bharat on the rails. His approach and work ethic were the secrets of his success. In a government undertaking, he extracted work from the few self-motivated persons available by patting them and punished non-performers. He trusted officers and gave them responsibilities to get things done and also reduced corruption.

The sacking of a sexual offender gave confidence to the women workers and many of them came forward to prove their mettle. In 2018 just before his retirement, Train 18 between ­Varanasi and Delhi was flagged off by PM Narendra Modi.

Now there are 45 trains. The ­appreciation from passengers and ­people of all walks of life is ­phenomenal as it is a purely ­indigenous ­venture — built in India for Indians by Indians. We ­Indians are proud of you, ­Sudhanshu Mani.

VRT Dorairaja, RC Tiruchirapalli — D 3000

I fully agree with the words in the article “Vande Bharat architect tells its story” that the term technology transfer is an oxymoron. Always, it is a particular individual’s contribution that plays a role in triggering a great achievement or invention, say, a space project or a big railway project. It was Sudhanshu Mani’s passion which made possible Inda’s indigenously built high speed train.

I like Mani’s words “You have to love what you do. Love your colleagues.” He exudes a positive approach when he says “Look at the large palette of colours; you can choose the hues of your liking,” that too in a government working setup. He further says that in so many organisations, good ideas and good people are always available but they are not given a chance. He emphasises the need to trust, empower people and delegate the right tasks to them. We should hail the brave man Sudhanshu Mani.

M Palaniappan, RC Madurai West — D 3000

As soon as I receive the magazine, the first two articles I read are the Editor’s Note of Rasheeda Bhagat and the humorous LBW column by TCA Srinivasa Raghavan. The editor’s brief coverage of important events is balanced, informative and inspirational. It gives an insight into the rest of the content of the magazine. Raghavan’s sense of humour is sophisticated, and he looks into the humorous side of daily life incidents. This is always a good beginning to read the other articles in the magazine.

H R Seetharam, RC Bangalore Indiranagar — D 3192

I felt happy reading the article A Rotary Mithai Mission for our ­soldiers (Feb issue) as RC Chandigarh is sending sweet boxes since 2017 as Diwali gifts to our jawans guarding our hostile borders. As a retired soldier, I am not only immensely grateful, but I also believe that all retired and serving soldiers must feel proud and joyful that Rotary is reaching out to our Army personnel every Diwali with boxes of sweets.

This gesture is a morale boost for soldiers on duty at tough conditions under freezing temperatures and at altitudes above 20,000 feet. This should serve as motivation for other Rotary clubs to do similar projects for our soldiers who sacrifice their lives for the nation. I am pleased to learn that the club is planning to extend this project by sending Diwali sweets to the Air Force and Navy personnel from this year. Godspeed to the club.

Col (retd) Vijaykumar, RC Alleppey Greater — D 3211

It has been very rightly said by ­Soumitra Chakraborty of RC ­Kolkata Universe at the last issue that a hard copy of Rotary News is always attractive, readable, with the pictures being very inspiring.

It is good to read about the RI rules that Rotary clubs not subscribing to any Rotary magazine are liable to be terminated. I believe that making the magazine ­mandatory will enable clubs as well as their ­members to remain updated every month on what is happening around the Rotary world.

Piyush Doshi, RC Belur — D 3291

Rotary enriched my life

I have been a member of RC ­Shillong for long and will turn 86 soon. I have seen many ups and down in my club, and have vivid memory of Rotary News in its nascent days; a few pages with very few Rotary articles. So, I used to subscribe The Rotarian which had very little Rotary projects in India. It carried mostly the articles about Rotary in other countries.

Now, the Rotary movement in India has spread far and wide and contributes big to TRF. With the upgraded Rotary News, I now read both Rotary articles and projects being done in India and overseas. I can’t attend club meetings, but keep myself updated through our club magazine.

However, I try to attend important meetings and will continue to be a Rotarian till the end of my life. Rotary has enriched my values, enhanced my knowledge and has taught me many things which I will cherish forever.

S L Singhania, RC Shillong — D 3240

Celebrating Rotaract & Peace

I was delighted to see the beautiful photo of RI President Gordon McInally and other ­senior Rotarians with Rotaractors and ­Interactors during his Sri Lanka visit as the cover photo in the March issue. In his message, he explained that 1,800 peace fellows are contributing to peacebuilding in the world and that they are engaged in more than 140 countries. The Editor’s note is a fitting tribute to the tallest of our lawyers, the late Fali Nariman, and the Binaca Geet Mala fame Ameen Sayani of Radio Ceylon who will surely be remembered by so many of his avid fans.

RID Anirudha Roychowdhury has focused on WASH programmes to create healthier communities. TRF trustee chair Barry Rassin relates WASH and Rotaract in his message and his vice-chair Bharat Pandya has rightly said TRF is an investment for future generations. Article Sri Lankan Rotarians combat cancer is informative. Glad to hear the German ­student likes Kerala a lot. The tributes to life and works of Nariman and Ameen Sayani are a joy to read. All pictures are colourful too. Kudos to the Rotary News team for their ­dedication and hard work.

Philip Mulappone M T, RC Trivandrum Suburban — D 3211

RI President McInally’s message showed how Rotary is creating a generation of leaders through the Rotary Peace Fellowships. The ­Editor’s Note paid an apt tribute to Fali ­Nariman, the eminent lawyer, and Ameen Sayani, the  delightful anchor of the Binaca Geetmala show on Radio ­Ceylon. RI Director Roychowdhury turned the spotlight on  rainwater harvesting, river restoration and pond ­excavation. These projects should be taken up by ­Bengaluru Rotarians to solve the grim water scarcity in their city. As suggested by TRF trustee chair Barry Rassin, they can apply for global grants to take up water and sanitation projects.

K M K Murthy, RC Secunderabad — D 3150

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