x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Modi's detractors are out of touch

The common people of Gujarat like Narendra Modi better than some journalists, a reader notes. Other topics: Italy and India, heritage protection, solar power and tailgating.

Narendra Modi may be unpopular with some journalists, a reader says, but he is popular with the ordinary people of the Hindu majority in Gujarat, and deserves to be elected prime minister of India. Reuters
Narendra Modi may be unpopular with some journalists, a reader says, but he is popular with the ordinary people of the Hindu majority in Gujarat, and deserves to be elected prime minister of India. Reuters

India must take strong action after Italian bad faith

I am referring to the article, PM warns Italy to send marines back to stand trial over fishermen killings (March 14).

I am sure many people have been shocked by Italy's behaviour. The escalation of the diplomatic crisis between India and Italy is inevitable. Even if Italy reverses itself, it will be a long time before India can trust Italy again.

What surprised me the most, however, is that an EU country actually endorsed such behaviour by its representative. The ambassador gave a false statement to the Supreme Court of India. This is unacceptable.

Italy may be presuming that it will not be easy for India to take any drastic measure. But by blatantly lying to the Supreme Court it has violated the standards that are expected of modern states in dealing with each other.

India must take a strong action, or this might set a precedent. In the future, other countries might take advantage of India in a similar way.

Petrina, Abu Dhabi

Use pictures to punish offenders

The National made some good arguments in the editorial, Harsh measures for speeders are key deterrents (March 12).

I have some additional suggestions. If I have a passenger in my car and am tailgated or flashed by an inconsiderate drivers I ask my passenger to take a picture.

How about the police having a department that would take action based on photographic evidence? Or a newspaper willing to publish and shame these culprits?

Name withheld by request

Modi is popular among Indians

The opinion article, Modi's damaged goods still fit the bill for many Indians (March 13), shows that many journalists in India are out of sync with the common people of the country.

Most of the Hindus - the community that makes up 85 per cent of India's population - admire Narendra Modi, who has been democratically elected to office three times by impressive majorities. Members of the community look up to Mr Modi not as a rabble rouser, but as a brave leader.

It is only a small number of people who do not support Mr Modi, whose hearts beats in tune with that of the common man in Gujarat. I hope he becomes the prime minister of India.

PS Menon, Dubai

We must all help protect heritage

I am surprised that the writer of the article Desi Girl: Respect for our heritage written in the stones (March 13), didn't see spray-painted hearts with drivel-like "Arif loves Fauzia" on the broken walls.

Harappa should be on the list of Unesco World Heritage sites and be given proper protection.

Too many people have no understanding of our heritage, and too few have the desire to protect it.

K Bilal, Dubai

Gas pipeline is good for Pakistan

Regarding your editorial, Iran and Pakistan on shaky ground for new pipeline (March 13), I think the new pipeline will be good news for Pakistan. The US should not oppose this project.

Sardar Khan, Pakistan

Solar power has drawbacks

There are two big obstacles to solar power in the UAE (Masdar may have the glamour but Baraka has real nuclear power, March 5).

First, solar cells are not very heat- tolerant. Above 25°C they lose efficiency very fast. By 40°C, some types have lost up to 50 per cent of their output potential.

More heat-tolerant cells are less efficient; each square-metre produces fewer watts than the other type. And they are more expensive per square metre.

Second, fine sand dust combined with dew can form a cement-like coating on the cells, unless they are frequently cleaned.

All in all, solar electricity costs more to produce here than in many other places. Germany and France have more or less ideal conditions; that's one reason solar power is so popular there.

However, solar water-heating works well in this region - if you get the right quality equipment. Cheap "knock-offs" do not last long.

The future would be brighter here if the UAE would sponsor university research to develop panels with more heat tolerance.

Kasper Larsen, Abu Dhabi

Rent disparity an issue of concern

I was concerned to read the report Dubai rents rise but the capital sees a decrease (March 10).

I hope this is not a case of Dubai's property market bubbling again.

F Hasan, Dubai