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This Diwali, be kind to dogs

People should show some compassion towards dogs, who are scared by the sound of firecrackers

By The Telegraph

  • Published 25.10.19, 2:23 AM
  • Updated 25.10.19, 2:23 AM
On the second day of Diwali, some parts of India and Nepal celebrate Kukur Tihar, a festival where the bond between dog and man is celebrated
On the second day of Diwali, some parts of India and Nepal celebrate Kukur Tihar, a festival where the bond between dog and man is celebrated (Shutterstock)

Sir — On the second day of Diwali, some parts of India and Nepal celebrate Kukur Tihar, a festival where the bond between dog and man is celebrated. Dogs are worshipped and offered good food. While not everyone in India follows this ritual traditionally, people should at least show some compassion towards dogs who, especially during Diwali, are scared by the sound of firecrackers. Shall we be a little more sensitive towards ‘man’s best friend’ this year?

Abhiroop Ghoshal

Calcutta

Tall figures

Sir — The article, “Dear Vid” (Oct 21), by Rosinka Chaudhuri was enriching in the way it shed light on the rapport between the poet, Michael Madhusudan Dutt, and the great reformer, Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar. Dutt held the latter in high regard. Vidyasagar — he was commonly known by the prestigious title bestowed upon him — was immensely charitable to the prodigal poet when misery befell him in Versailles. In fact, Dutt sought his help because he was certain of Vidyasagar’s compassion and open mind, and that he would practise what he preached.

Both Vidyasagar and Dutt were formidably modern in outlook and assertive in expression. Vidyasagar reformed Bengali society and prose, whereas Dutt revolutionized Bengali poetry and diction. An outstanding sonneteer with fine rhetoric skills, Dutt dedicated an unforgettable poem to Vidyasagar. The relationship between the two was based on mutual reverence and trust. Both had the courage to challenge the status quo ante in life and literature. It is not only Bengal but the whole of India that should be proud of these two figures.

Rajesh Chowdhury

Murshidabad

Sir — Following the demise of Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar, Rabindranath Tagore paid his tribute to him by writing: “One wonders how God, in the process of producing forty million Bengalis, produced a man!” Vidyasagar, who was one of the greatest Bengalis ever born, is now almost forgotten. Rosinka Chaudhuri’s article was therefore timely as well as interesting. Without the prolonged financial help and encouragement from Vidyasagar, one wonders if we would have got many literary gems from Dutt.

Besides his help to Dutt, Vidyasagar’s contributions to society, particularly to the emancipation of women, is unparalleled. His untiring efforts led to the legalization of widow remarriage. He also fought for women’s education. In fact, learning about Vidyasagar’s role in reforming society should be made compulsory in schools across the country.

The legacy of Vidyasagar has been ignored for decades. He is being remembered now — a year before his bicentenary —partly because of political reasons. The fact that his bust was broken by some people who claim to be patriots is shameful.

Asit Kumar Mitra

Calcutta

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