Letters to the Editor – January 2024

Interesting, insightful editorials

In the December editorial, ­Rasheeda Bhagat pointed out about the sporting spirit missing among the spectators at the finals of Cricket World Cup and rightly wondered, ‘Is it fair to all concerned?’ In the ­article What Team India can teach all of us, the author explains how fast bowlers Shami and Siraj came in for all-round praise. As he suggests, let India replicate this DNA by being the best among nations but in a different game of humanity. Rotary founder Paul Harris has rightly said, “Man has affinity for his fellow man, regardless of race, creed or politics, and the greater the variety, the more the zest. All that friendliness needs is a sporting chance; it will take care of itself in any company.”

K M K Murthy, RC Secunderabad — D 3150

I am a voracious reader of the ­magazine’s editorial ever since Rasheeda Bhagat took over as the editor of Rotary News. Her language is charming and easy to understand. She has indepth knowledge with a robust command over the English language. I learnt recently that she has 45 years’experience as a ­journalist in prestigious dailies like Indian Express and The Hindu Business Line.

In the Nov editorial, she has turned the spotlight on two eminent scientists — Y Nayudumma and M S Swaminathan who recently passed away. He was the epitome of simplicity, humility, affability and gentleness besides being a brilliant scientist. Empowering women in agriculture was one of his biggest passions. The legend will be remembered forever.

Raj Kumar Kapoor, RC Roopnagar — D 3080

The editorial A heartbreaking defeat is well-written and worth reading. Ten matches were played and won by our team. Our prime minister visited their dressing room and appreciated their good performance through the World Cup.

On the audience reaction, when large groups of spectators assemble to watch international matches, a spirit of encouragement and motivation for all players should prevail. It is unfortunate that these things were missing in the World Cup. Let’s hope we develop a better sporting spirit in the future so that the spectators cheer good shots, irrespective of the teams they come from.

R Srinivasan, RC Bangalore, J P Nagar — D 3191

Diverse coverage

The Dec issue has a collection of so many good projects. Starting from the proud feeling that one of the Rotarians will attend COP28 meet, Ravishankar Dakoju’s KGF project and knowing more about the late PDG Madhura Chatrapadhy to skill development for trafficked women, crematorium and biodiversity (RC Niligiris) and Cinema on Wheels to RC ­Chandigarh’s projects and so on.

I’m happy to share that I now give the magazine to my wife, grandmother and uncle, and they like it too. Even those clubs that cant do big projects should keep at least one meet for ­reading/discussing the projects covered by Rotary News, so that their members can know what other clubs are doing. Well done. Waiting for the next issue

Prashant Mehta, RC Kolhapur Heritage — D 3170

The article Uniting the World through Art by V Muthukumaran is well-presented with details of the art festival in Chandigarh.These types of events are necessary when world peace is at great peril. Bharatiya Vidya ­Bhavan, Bengaluru, Infosys Foundation and RC Chandigarh deserve kudos.

M Palaniappan, RC Madurai West — D 3000

In Cybercrime it was rightly pointed out that people have become addicted to the mobile phone, making common cybercrimes targeting innocent people. We have to be extra alert.

S Mohan, RC Madurai West — D 3000

Commendable project

I was delighted to see a unique old black and white picture showing the Kolar gold mine in the British era as the cover photo of the Dec issue. The cover story Bengaluru Rotarianscreate fruits from poison” in KGF by the editor is fascinating as it depicts the commitment of Rotarians, especially Ravishankar Dakoju, for creating a green garden from the poisonous cyanide dumps.

RI President Gordon McInally, quoting the words of Shelterbox CEO, affirms that disasters are not natural but man made and how they can be lessened in future with human efforts. Rotary director Raju Subramanian reminds us of the necessity of helping those who are in need of healthcare.

The Editor’s note has rightly stressed on the need to be graceful in showing grace in defeat and the need for the audience to exhibit a sporting spirit in international cricket matches.

The obit article Rotary mourns two past presidents by PRIP ­Rajendra Saboo remembers well the services of both Rotary ­leaders. The demise of PDG Madhura Chatrapathy is a great loss to the Rotary world. The pictures in the Dec issue are vivid and colourful.

Philip Mulappone M T, RC Trivandrum Suburban — D 3211

The British took away tonnes of gold from the KGF mines and left behind mountains of poisonous cyanide dumps. But Dakoju has shown that Rotarians can grow delicious cherries on poisonous dumps. With guidance from Srinivasa Rao, former deputy conservator of forest, trenches were made, compost put into them, and trees and grass were planted. Now, birds and animals visit these dumps and the KGF residents can breathe dust-free, poison-free air, and enjoy the greenery. A transformation beyond imagination.

V R T Dorairaja, RC of Tiruchirapalli — D 3000

The Dec issue is a good balance between thought-­provoking articles and an account of great social service being done by ­Rotarians across India. I liked ­Bengaluru Rotarianscreate fruits form poison” in KGF, and other ­articles on  empowering ­students in Pune, cybercrime, ­skilling trafficked women and the health column. As usual, the LBW column by Srinivasa Raghavan was a treat to read!

Pramod Beri, RC Kolhapur — D 3170

I   have the Dec issue in my hands and the cover story on KGF is simply stunning. What a fresh look and great effort to change the world when industries and business are polluting the world! Rtn Ravishankar Dakoju and his team have “looked beyond themselves” to make the world a better place to live in. As a geologist of the 1970s, I have always wondered what will be the fate of Kolar, but Dakoju and his team have kindled a ray of hope, and it is really astonishing to see their success. Best wishes to his team.

Sidduram L S, RC Mettupalayam — D 3203

As one who has spent all my childhood years in Kolar, I read with interest the ­article on KGF. The poorly paid workers earned their money risking their lives digging at depths of ­thousands of feet, inhaling the cyanide dust which resulted in ­silicosis. Compensation was unheard of. I sincerely appreciate Ravishankar Dakoju and Neil Michael who are working hard to make the cyanide dumps green and prevent the cyanide dust from polluting the air. Their effort is commendable.

I request them also to rejuvenate the Bethamangalam tank which used to supply water to KGF. The tank, fed by Palar river, has gone dry. The three lakh ­residents of KGF have been buying water for many years.

H R Seetharam, RC Bangalore Indiranagar — D 3192

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