Vive le Art

Updated: Jan 23 2007, 06:20am hrs
The passing away of Art Buchwald makes the literary world a little smaller. He mixed his writings with great satire in a style of his own. He made fun of his own coming death in his column!
To quote, “I never thought dying will be so much fun.” One can’t weep for Buchwald. Long live Art’s humour!
—VS Venkatavaradan Salem

Farm fusion
Your message is both timely and pertinent (‘Don’t halt the SEZ engine’, January 19). India reportedly has 130 million hectares of ‘wasteland’, and the government should stay away from land deals. It should act merely as a facilitator. Indian farmers are much more aware today. In Magarpatta near Pune, for example, farmers formed an association, went into the business of real estate development and made fortunes. For rapid industrialisation, we cannot afford to allow politicians with vested interests to slow down the process.
—JM Gandhi Mumbai

Twain’s umbrella
India’s banking sector is still not free (‘The great banking slice up’, January 22), as Sucheta Dalal points out. Reform must start with first principles. Can the system ensure that every potential value generator has funds to survive fallow periods, which can be excruciatingly long in a country like ours As Mark Twain joked, banks are institutions designed to hand you an umbrella once it stops raining.
—S Ramanathan