Monday 16 July 2012
Last Update 16 July 2012 2:38 am
Women’s transport woes
This refers to the article “Transportation costs take half of women’s income” (July 14) by Fadia Jiffry. I think the issue of women’s driving is taking a heavy toll, and the sooner it is solved, the better it will be. For this purpose, religious scholars must sit together at the earliest and solve the problem in the light of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Women who want to drive should be allowed to do so. As a matter of fact, a woman driven around by her driver is not a permissible situation as per Islamic teachings because drivers are not Mahram (blood relatives). It is better to allow women to drive the vehicles themselves.
Now the question that arises is: If a woman is driving to remote places, for example, from Alkhobar to Riyadh, and her vehicle breaks down in the middle of the road, will she have the courage to face the situation? Miscreants can take this opportunity to tease or molest her. These are genuine issues women will have to sort out by themselves. If women are allowed to drive within the cities, they will be able to perform their daily routine jobs with great efficiency. For traveling out of the cities, the government should employ ample transportation facilities meant exclusively for women.
Nowadays many women observe complete Hijab, their salaries are low and they have to support their families. They cannot afford a driver or the high taxi fares. Such a situation requires an urgent solution. — Anees Lokhande, Alkhobar
Water shortage and sewage
This refers to the report, "Water projects worth SR 4 bn planned." I have been reading similar news reports for many days and I am glad that attention is now being given to the sewage system and the issue of water shortage. I have been a resident of Aziziyah District in Jeddah for the past 12 years. Before that we were residing in Dammam. The major problem we faced soon after moving to Jeddah was water shortage.
Many of my friends living in various parts of Jeddah have been complaining of water shortage for many years. Water shortage was never a problem in Dammam. Apart from water problem, the sewage system is also in a very poor state. Many times I have noticed sewage on the streets creating unbearable foul smell and making it very difficult for pedestrians to walk. This also poses health hazard for people living in that area.
Moreover, I have witnessed stagnant water overflowing from water tanks, creating a mess for vehicles as well as pedestrians. I would like to draw the attention of the authorities toward the heaps of rubbish on the roads at some places. — Dr. Areej Rana, Jeddah
Babri Mosque revelations
The infamous former Indian Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao is back in news these days after some shocking facts about his role in the demolition of the Babri Mosque were disclosed.
Though his obvious involvement was apparent, veteran Congress leader late Arjun Singh and popular Indian journalist Kuldip Nayar have confirmed in their books that Rao was indeed spiteful and turned a blind eye to the Babri demolition. Singh has highlighted Rao's cold ties with the Gandhi family, particularly with Sonia Gandhi. An excerpt of his book says: "Why should the Congress party be hitched to the Nehru-Gandhi family like train compartments to the engine." This was how Rao reacted to the suggestion that Sonia Gandhi be made the Congress chief after the assassination of her husband Rajiv Gandhi in 1991.
Nayar's book "Beyond the Lines" has also alleged that Rao connived in the demolition of the Babri Mosque, claiming that the late prime minister sat down for a religious ritual when the Kar Sevaks began pulling down the mosque and rose only when it had been razed.
"It was daylight murder of secularism," Nayar commented on the demolition. It was so unfortunate that a narrow and sick-minded person like Rao was made prime minister of this great secular and democratic country. Muslims all over the world, particularly the Indian Muslims, cannot forget his role in hurting the religious sentiments and for causing a great damage to the democracy and secularism in India. In fact, he was fully responsible for the downfall of the Congress. He will be remembered as the most unsuccessful and unwise prime minister in the Indian history. It is also noteworthy that after his death in New Delhi his body was shifted to Hyderabad and at the time of cremation his body was attacked and dragged by a group of wild dogs. Some local TV channels telecasted the scene, and certainly, there is a lesson for all in that. — Zakaria Sultan, Riyadh
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