Child slavery in India will be hard to eradicate

A reader says it's hard to eradicate child labour in India. Other topics: Malaysian airline, pedestrian deaths, drainage systems, alcohol

A reader says it will be hard to eradicate child slavery in India as it is deeply rooted in society. Daniel Berehulak / Getty Images
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Even though child labour or slavery is common in India, I was shocked to learn that the country is home to half of the world's modern slaves and that Delhi alone has more than 100,000 of them (Of human bondage, March 15).

More shocking, however, is that people still buy “slaves” and brag about it. My impression is that no laws and NGOs can bring this problem under control unless the mindset of the people changes. It’s acceptable in India to make children perform every kind of physical labour.

I have seen people who are reluctant to send children to school as they fear that they will have to perform all their household chores themselves.

This attitude will not change overnight. In fact I will be surprised if this attitude changes at all. Where is the conscience?

Varsha John, Abu Dhabi

Can plane mystery be solved soon?

The news report Malaysia airliner's disappearance a "deliberate act" (March 16) was disturbing. For more than a week the Malaysian authorities abstained from revealing the possible reasons for the plane's mysterious disappearance.

What made them delay in announcing the possible reasons? With the new lead, however, we can hope that investigators will reach a conclusion that will give some consolation to the relatives of the passengers on the ill-fated plane. I still hope that the passengers are alive and safe.

K Ragavan, India

I understand the disappearance of the plane has caused immense suffering for the families of the passengers, but I feel that they should respect the airline’s position too.

There are people all over the world who are always trying to find new ways to commit crimes and their focus never deviates from the aviation industry.

Airlines have been proactive and have taken lessons from each situation to improve security.

I know it’s easier said than done, but be patient. I have a feeling that all will be well in the end.

Ameerah Jolene-Ann van Heerden, Dubai

Pay attention to zebra crossings

I am responding to the news article Al Ain takes measures to increase road safety (March 13).

I have a suggestion that could save many pedestrians’ lives: don’t put zebra crossings immediately on turn offs from a roundabout. It’s the most ridiculous place I have ever seen them.

Have clear signs indicating a zebra crossing ahead and make sure street lights are positioned over the crossing if it’s not a pedestrian-controlled crossing or use bright flashing amber lights with illuminated black-and-white poles. Also repaint the crossings regularly as the lines fade due to a lack of rain and teach the residents of Sanaiya how to use them. Most of them just randomly amble across the road as and when they feel like it, not looking in the direction of the cars.

Name withheld by request

Build drainage to tackle rain chaos

I enjoyed the heavy showers on Friday. But it was a nightmare for me when I hit the road in the evening.

The roads were full of slush while some of them were clogged with water. Although many new roads have been built in Abu Dhabi, the Friday downpour proved how risky they can be in the absence of adequate drainage facilities.

This problem has persisted for many years, but when new roads are built it seems little attention is paid to this problem.

In places like Musaffah, the condition was perhaps the worst. Not only roads, but even Dalma Mall was in a bad shape. The parking area was flooded. Water was leaking from everywhere and broken lights were hanging here and there. Some shops in the mall were busy wiping water away from everywhere. While building infrastructure, contractors will be wise to keep these problems in mind.

P Dominic, Abu Dhabi

Respect laws of a nation you visit

This refers to the article Drunk British tourist ran about naked at Shoreline on Palm Jumeirah (March 13). Why sell alcohol in the first place if drinking is illegal?

Also, alcohol consumption is prohibited for Muslims, so why penalise non-Muslims for consuming it when it is normal for them?

Aziza Al Busaidy, Sharjah

It’s common sense that you must educate yourself about the rules and regulations of a country that you intend to visit.

Concerning banning alcohol, I fully agree that if people want to drink, they will, no matter what the laws are. Even though the British Embassy is doing a lot to spread awareness among their citizens here in the UAE, I feel some people are just arrogant. There is no harm in showing respect to a country’s laws.

Name withheld by request