Escaping death by inches
A few days ago, I was on my way home with my family. We were in the second lane on Al Khail Road and going straight after a roundabout. A huge tanker was in the extreme right lane and wanted to go left from the roundabout. We escaped death by a few inches that day. The driver wasn't bothered! He didn't stop or try to stop! We would have been crushed under the huge tanker while he would have gotten away with just imprisonment. Is that fair?
From Ms Radhika Mahajan

A world without America
I applaud the French and Americans. However, as an American, I am tired of always rushing to the problem with our military. The world does nothing until America acts. When we do act it's often with too much might and force. It's time for the world to act and not always leave it to the Americans. Neighbouring countries have allowed this problem to fester. It's time to take a stance, stand up and lead! Leading doesn't mean using brute force; it's about listening to the plight of others and finding a balanced solution.
From Ms Patricia T.

Resources matter
I have come across media messages asking people to reduce the usage of electricity and water, particularly in residential areas. Practically speaking, it is necessary for companies to reduce their usage, too. They must do their bit in saving energy and water. Malls, banks and commercial buildings that house offices always have their lights, air conditioning and computers on, irrespective of the time of day. Hoardings, bright lights, and decorations are kept lit throughout the night, which is not required - not many people would view the hoardings at night. A question to the advertisers - why spend so much if your purpose is not being achieved? These must be shut down after midnight, which will save energy. I hope the electricity and water authorities launch a campaign that teaches organisations to conserve energy and water for a better and greener future.
From A Reader
Name withheld by request

A key element to surviving the global economic crisis is to avoid distress marketing and simply hold on to the true value of a brand. Many top marketers feel that investing in future product launches or offerings is important because once the crisis gets over it would take a couple of years to get back on track. By that time the brand value could be damaged and would need double the investment to get back on track.
From Mr Jaideep Merh

Happy with UAE taxis
I visited Dubai in February 2009 and used taxis most of the time during my stay there. I must say, I found the taxis very clean and always on time. The fare wasn't too expensive either. Keep up the good work.
From Ms Dimitris Tsitsiras
Athens, Greece

Eye opener
The recent verbal attacks on Dubai [in Western media] are a real eye opener ("Western expats full of praise for Dubai," Gulf News, April 13). I have no comments about the Western media - news like this is probably for survival. However, I do have a complaint against the expatriates featured in their stories - people who are complaining about a place they are happily living in. It is similar to kicking the plate which one eats in. Let these expatriates go back to their countries - why are they staying here and creating problems?
From Mr P. Swami

A necessity
The world economic crisis showed us the danger of a uni-polar economic dominance. To protect each country's economy and not get affected by the global crisis is a necessity of the time. Creating unions of like minded countries that would take steps to prevent and protect from economic terrorism is a must. The rich and powerful countries with their allies may try to control the world economy again, in a calculated and manipulative manner, just to serve their long term interests.
From A Reader
Name withheld by request

Frantic 15 minutes
My children aged three and six and a friend's five-year-old daughter were lost in a park, recently. After about 15 to 20 minutes of frantic searching, we found them with the help of security guards and a few Arab women in abayas. I would like to convey a special thanks to the kind women who handed over the children to the security guard.
From Ms Farheen K.

Endurance race
A few months ago, a reporter from Gulf News narrated his travelling experience from Sharjah to Dubai stating that it took him only 15 minutes to complete the journey using Al Ittihad Road. This did not last long, as it now takes 45 minutes to get from Sahara Centre to Al Mulla Plaza, which are only a few kilometres apart. Every morning the entire stretch of Ittihad Road resembles a huge car park, with traffic at a standstill or moving at a snail's pace. I hope this will improve when the Metro starts functioning. Until then we seem to have no choice but to endure the stressful commute.
From Ms Meena Nair

Healthy writing
A very good report by Gulf News on anger ("Anger: A waste of emotion," Gulf News, April 11). We expect more such articles. Have a healthy reading.
From Mr Jaffer Shadiq Z.
Abu Dhabi


Not wired
I recently moved into an area where du is the service provider. When I asked them to change my internet connection to a wireless service, I was told that they do not provide that service! When I told them I have a wireless router and just want a technician to come and connect it, I was told that I will have to do it on my own. The reason they gave me for not having a wireless internet connection was: "Sir, it is unsecured and that is why we do not provide it". I do not believe how primitive du's services are.
From Mr Arvind K. Bhatnagar

The management of du replies: With regards to the query of Mr Arvind K. Bhatnagar, the du customer care team got in touch with the customer and informed him that du does not provide wireless routers as a part of its home service package. He was advised by the customer care team to purchase and install it from external sources at his convenience. The matter is resolved.

Bank on it
I was cheated and trapped by Standard Chartered Bank in August. My loan was almost fully paid and had only one month's balance due. The sales staff from Standard Chartered Bank called me several times and offered me a loan amount of Dh140,000 with 8.99 per cent interest rate if I applied for a fresh loan. I told them I am not interested. They forced me again and promised me it will be approved within seven days if my car loan and credit card dues are settled. I trusted them, so I asked my colleagues to lend me Dh25,000 to settle all the outstanding. Then the bank started processing my loan and I arranged for the salary transfer letter from my employer. The bank representative collected a signed cheque and application. After two days I got a verification call from the bank, and was asked for some details. Then I was told that within a few days, the amount will be credited in my account. After 15 days, it was not credited in my account so I called them several times but they said they didn't know the reason for the delay! After some days, they said their human resources department was not reachable! Since 1993, I have had an account with them and just recently I settled my previous loan and all my details are in their system. After all that, they said I was not granted the loan. I promised my colleagues to give their money back within 10 days but I could not keep my promise because of the bank. After that I had to get money from my home country. I am still suffering.
From Mr A. Mustafa

Mr Sam Gad, Media Relations and Communications, Standard Chartered Bank, replies: You will appreciate that, for confidentiality reasons, we cannot comment on individual customers. I can advise you that the bank continues to provide lending based on eligibility criteria. The bank always advocates financial literacy as key in ensuring customers make informed financial choices and decisions.