A burden
Due to regular requirements of basic items we are least bothered with checking the prices and we wonder at the end of each month where we spent that extra money we had (‘Cost of living rises in Abu Dhabi’, Gulf News, March 20). But if you see the price of any commodity, such as meat for example, it was around Dh21.50 in most supermarkets three years ago. However, if you check it now then it is around Dh36.50 — this is around a 60 per cent increase in price. That’s really shocking and it has increased the burden on our wallets. Another 60 per cent increase in a few years seems unimaginable, but it could be a reality. So we need some real control from the authorities on such prices and we know that they will do their best to solve our problems.
From Mr Mohammad Aasif
Abu Dhabi

More payments
Day by day the cost of living is going up, but the salary increment is only around three per cent of the basic salary every year. There will also be many other expenses such as Mawaqif in the coming year.
Mr Khan
Abu Dhabi

Keep an eye on prices
There is no salary hike for the private sector, but there are hikes on food prices. The UAE government should take necessary steps against illegal price hikes.
From Mr Ebrahim

Track them down
I agree that there must be awareness and guidance for people to take care of stray animals (‘Dubai Municipality: Feeding stray animals punishable under law’, Gulf News, March 20). However, I do not agree that people should stop feeding a poor animal that somehow got brought into the world and should be kept alive and in a healthy condition. There are other ways to stop animals from multiplying the way they do. The Municipality could do a lot more to improve rather than fine people who do not want to see animals dying. All of these problems would be less of a burden if there are rules of importing and exporting all kinds of animals as pets. Animals coming into the country should be tagged and chipped and all the owner’s details should be included. This way you can track when the so-called animal lovers leave the country and dump their pets that then struggle to survive. A pet is a family member and is to be kept and moved with the family for life. I am extremely concerned and sad with this situation. All animals are creatures of God.
From Ms Maria Heleno

Nothing is done
We see, hear and read a lot about animals that were abused, killed, neglected and abandoned but has anyone been arrested or fined because of it? Now they want to fine people who are trying to help and extend kindness to God’s other creatures? This is wrong!
From Ms Yasmeen

It’s wrong
There would not be stray cats and dogs on the streets had there been adequate facilities and sterilisation in place. Imagine a person who’s been feeding these poor animals all their life and suddenly has to see these innocent creatures die of hunger. That’s wrong.
From Mr Joel Dlima

Part of the family
I am so saddened to read that the Municipality will fine those who give food to stray cats. I am a pet lover — cats and dogs — and consider them as part of every home.
From Mr Ronald

Alternative ways
The decision to impose fines for feeding stray cats makes me sad. Stray cats are common in and around our neighbourhoods and we should consider these as creatures of God — just like us. Providing food and water to dehydrated and hungry cats could never be considered an offence. Feeding water to any creature when it needs it should be a basic humanitarian act. If this doesn’t happen then how will these cats get water? How can they survive without food? What is going to happen is that those cats will die and decay in many buildings and in unreachable areas. Spreading diseases can be prevented by not touching cats and proper cleansing of hands with antibacterial lotions.
From Mr Binu James

Distracted on the road
During one of my drives from Abu Dhabi to Dubai I noticed many drivers using their mobile phones to talk or send text messages. I also noticed that many of them drive luxury cars and many are female drivers. In one case, I saw a woman driving with a small child sitting between her and the door, while talking on the phone to someone. I have a feeling that the number of middle class residents using their phones while driving has decreased due to heavy fines. So why don’t the authorities implement a pro rata-based percentage surcharge on top of the regular fine that is based on the type of car the motorist drives, his or her employment or salary? Those who drive such expensive cars are supposed to be educated and should project themselves to the society as an example in terms of being safe on the roads. I am writing this after seeing many drivers either talking or sending text messages while driving.
From Mr Ramesh Menon
Abu Dhabi