Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Hemantha Kalam - 6 'Delivering-Safety'

Hemantha Kalam



Recently my daughter got me an old copy of "The Straits Times" (of the Singapore Press Holdings or simply SPH) issue dated the 22nd July, 2013. 

Well, we have this practice in our family that whichever state in India we may visit or whichever country in the world we visit, we do bring a copy of the local newspapers, essentially with the aim of the whole family taking a look at them to understand the format of news dissemination, the layouts, the presentation of news and so on as more of an academic interest.

Coming back to "The Straits Times", I found two news items quite interesting.

The first news is from the neighbouring country Malaysia (page A-10 Section Asia-The Straight Times, 22nd July, 2013) which says "KL postmen caught dumping bags of mail"

Clearly intrigued, I went through the whole, amusing if not annoying, news item to realise that about three postmen virtually dumped all the mail to be delivered to intended recipients, at a desolate area near Kuala Lumpur's posh housing estate in the Ukay Heights district.

The dumped mail apparently contained cheques, bills, bank statements, correspondence, letter and many others. Several residents have not been receiving their mails for almost over six months and they appear to be quite relieved, now.

Here is the link for this news.


Shouldn't we be thankful that our mail delivery is safe and though might be delayed, is not being denied despite all the junk that is being mailed to us by so many promoting organisations? :-) 

In fact, people such as me belonging to the yore understand and deeply appreciate the role of the Post and Post Wo/men who were literally messiahs bearing important news-be it a child birth or a birth of a new job or plain love/affectionate letters, returned contributions to newspapers, journals and magazines and those rare times of bringing in complimentary issues of printed matter.

I, for one, always cherish the times I had spent waiting for the post day in and day out as Post in those days was synonymous to hope. And Hope need to be safely delivered.

Now that so much has been said about 'delivery' let me now proceed to the second and headline news item on the same issue of "The Straits Times" which screams "Passenger killed after SMRT bus overturns"

There is a reason for this news item hitting the headlines. As per the tail piece of the report, the last such "Catastrophic" accident took place was apparently in 2005. 

As per Indian standards, the news in itself is very simple, the bus veered and turned over and a passenger was crushed between seats in the impact and expired-and that's it.

But this item apparently deserved front-page headline space on "The Straits Times"  as such accidents in Singapore are rarest of the rare?

It might be unfair to compare this isolated incident to those that happen in India everywhere and on a daily basis, keeping the population of both people and vehicles in both countries in mind.

But there is a lesson or two for us here.

1. The government of Singapore appears to be more sincere in ensuring such mishaps not happening and

2. The person who is striving for the Traffic Security in Singapore, interestingly, is a person of Indian Origin (should I be saying 'naturally' here?) dubbed 'The Tireless road safety warrior' Mr. Gopinath Menon.

The 69 year old Mr. Menon has spent more than three decades making roads in Singapore less dangerous.

Here are the links pertaining to this news




Isn't it time we really start thinking about our own traffic and safety more seriously?

You tell me! :-)

Till then, 

Krutagjnatalu, Nanri, Dhanyavaadagalu, Nanni, Dhanyavaad, Thanks, Dhonyabaad, Gracias, Grazie, Danke Schon, Merci, Obrigado, Shukraan, Shukriya, Aw-koon, Kawp Jai Lhai Lhai.

Hemantha Kumar Pamarthy
Chennai, India

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