UK’s unfair decision

The ex-British Gurkhas who retired before 1997 have been discriminated against yet again with the UK government refusing to pay them retirement perks and pension in line with those retiring after 1997, as per a new provision. I would like to know what yardstick the British government employs to calculate the worth of pre-1997 Gurkhas as opposed to their post-1997 counterparts.

In this connection, I urge the Nepali government to raise a strong voice on behalf of over 40,000 of its citizens who have been deprived of their rights by the British government. The

recruitment of Nepali citizens in the British Army should also be stopped until the UK acknowledges that the pre-1997 Gurkhas were not mere “mercenaries.”

Additionally, the government should work towards opening up new markets for the Gurkhas (besides the UK and India) and also look into the provisions under which the British government sell the services of the Gurkhas to Singapore Police and Gurkha Reserve Unit, Brunei.

Balbahadur Tamang, Ex-British Army officer

Public stunt

On Wednesday, the inevitable happened. Sooner or later, Iran had to free the 15 British sailors and marines taken hostage after they “trespassed” Iranian waters, “Iran-UK row ends, 15 sailors walk free” (THT, April 5). Iran had violated all maritime conventions by capturing the Britons who, in all likelihood, had strayed into Iranian water. By labelling the freed prisoners as a “gift” to the people of Britain, hardline Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad tried to show that under his fiery and unyielding exterior lies a compassionate self.

But what other option did Ahmadinejad have? Iran is trying to show that it is against American and British hegemony, not against ordinary people. Though it may take some time to know the fallout of the Iranian move fully, it is unlikely that western nations will warm up to the Iranian president yet.

Shailesh Bhandari, Lainchaur

Punish UK

Iran on Wednesday released the 15 British sailors and marines who had trespassed into Iranian waters two weeks ago. This violation of Iranian territorial waters reflects poorly on Britain. Or do powerful countries like the US and the UK believe that they are exempt from all international obligations? The United Nations should ensure that no country that violates the territory of other countries escapes tough punishment.

Shiva Neupane, Golfutar

Chaotic roads

The news report “City roads need more traffic lights, says DoR official” (THT, April 5) was well presented. Nevertheless, I would suggest that the comments of Sunil Poudel, a DoR engineer, regarding the cost of new traffic lights, is not correct. The fuel wasted during traffic jams costs much more than can ever be spent on providing more traffic lights.

But I agree that “introduction of proper law will help bring violators of traffic rules to book”. This, combined with improved training of the traffic police, particularly in the correct methods and signals to control traffic at intersections, with more white paint for traffic lanes, would dramatically improve the situation in Kathmandu.

Dr Anthony Callow, Kathmandu