Calls for India to help Pakistan; Kerala losing to drug menace; Aligning GDP growth to people’s progress

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Opinion Watch

Editorial note: This section aims to spur debate among informed society, and the style of writing here is that of a commentary, as objective is not just to inform what’s commented by dailies but weigh their arguments.

The Economic Times and Deccan Herald have strongly advocated for India to unilaterally respond to one of the worst humanitarian crises in Pakistan following the super floods. Over one-third population of Pakistan is facing the wrath of the flood fury there, while the losses are estimated to be $ 10 billion, argued the two dailies in quite similar Edits.

The two newspapers again take refuge in the arguments that India being an aspiring power has a duty to respond to Pakistan’s crisis. ET reminded that India extended assistance to Pakistan during the Covid-19 pandemic also through the Gavi initiative, which is a global alliance.

DH noted that it was Pakistan which froze the trade relations after the Indian Parliament enacted ‘The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill’, which revoked the Article 370.

Both the dailies are indeed rushing in their arguments, for Pakistan has proven to be an unreliable nation, pursuing terrorism as its state policy.

Best case should be for India to share the aids to international agencies, and stay away from directly dealing with Pakistan until there exists no terror infrastructure, and Islamabad buries Mullah-Military marriage, which has made the country infested with terrorists.

Kerala losing to drug menace

Kerala had earned the tag of God’s own country, with people thronging to its backwaters to indulge in nature’s beauty.

But The Pioneer has grimly noted that the God’s own country is now the narcotics hub of South India.

Statistics shared by none other than Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the state Assembly suggests that even ordinary people have been dragged into the drug menace.

In the last eight months, 17,834 persons were arrested in 16, 128 cases of drug-trafficking and abuse, the Pioneer quoted the Chief Minister’s reply in the Assembly. Such cases were sub-5000 level in 2020 and 2021, and surely 2022 has seen drug menace explosion in Kerala.

Ironically, Doordarshan had run a documentary ‘Drugs: An Octopus’ in 1980s, noted the daily, adding that an eminent physician Dr MRRR Menon had warned three decades ago the risks of synthetic drugs in Kerala. The daily claims that the situation is worse than the ‘Opium War’ of China in the 18th and 19th century, linking several murders and cases of suicides to the drug menace in Kerala.

There’s no denying the fact that drug menace and the rave parties are most underrated challenges for the country.

Aligning GDP growth to people’s progress

India has become the fifth largest economy in the world, and The Times of India and Deccan Herald have commented on the state of economy.

Both the dailies have argued that the gains of economy should reflect in the prosperity of the people.

ToI argued that the low GDP per capita and the continuing Covid relief package providing free foodgrains for 80 crore people are pointers to low individual productivity.

The daily has rightly stated that the GDP per capita of $2500 is indeed on account of excessive agriculture-dependent population, with their annual income being just $1500.

DH has called out for the RBI to tame inflation, and the government to work for fiscal expansion.

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