Month: July 2012

Time for Etisalat to improve its airport presence

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Although it is the major telecommunications service provider in the UAE, Etisalat still falls short when it comes to providing good customer service.

At Abu Dhabi Airport, the location of the only Etisalat payment machine is unknown even to many of the airport staff. The plight of a visitor can be imagined.

When I tried to deposit money in the machine recently, it would not accept any notes. When I called the Etisalat contact centre to report this error, I failed to convince the operator about the importance of this issue.

He wanted to have the machine’s ID number, which was not displayed. I told him the machine’s location – it is just in front of the Etihad and NBAD offices on the mezzanine floor – but he was adamant about getting this number so he could log the complaint.

I wonder whether the machine was finally repaired. Considering the value of Etisalat’s reach and its prominence in this country, I think it should have a customer support and sales counter at the airport arrivals terminal.

This is especially significant as the airport will be the gateway for all the visitors arriving for the new season of international events, including the Formula One race.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
To read it in original, please visit THE NATIONAL online

Abandoned cars send a message

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Abandoned cars send a message

I recently visited Abu Dhabi International Airport’s short-term car park and was shocked to see many cars there completely covered in dust.
Some of them had punctured tyres and the dust was inscribed with graffiti, so I guessed that they had been there for a long time. This was confirmed when I visited 10 days later and the same vehicles were still there.
I am not sure whether these are cars parked in the wrong place by travellers who are on long holidays or they have been abandoned by people who have left the country for good.
Graffiti on one of them saying “Gone fishing” made me think the latter might be the case.
I hope the relevant authorities at the airport can remove these vehicles, as they provide an unpleasant sight for visitors.
With several key events scheduled to happen immediately after Ramadan, this is one thing the authorities should take into consideration in their efforts to continue to keep the city neat and clean.
Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
To read it in original, please visit THE NATIONAL online.

Sibal launches anti-ragging portal

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Sibal launches anti-ragging portal

New Delhi, July 27, 2012: Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal Thursday launched a round-the-clock anti-ragging website and helpline for reporting cases of ragging. The portal has been created by the Aman Satya Kachroo Trust, under Rajendra Kachroo whose son Aman was ragged to death by four of his seniors in a medical college in Himachal Pradesh.

“The Supreme Court gave order in 2009 that we should create an anti-ragging portal. Ragging is a crime which destroys a student’s confidence and even forces them to commit suicide,” Sibal said after launching the portal. Kachroo, meanwhile, expressed confidence that the new portal will ensure a response to the complaints lodged by students within half an hour.

“We will respond to the complaints in half an hour. The college principals and authorities will be contacted immediately. If they are not reachable or do not respond appropriately, the local police will be contacted,” Kachroo said. The complaints can be lodged at helpline number 18001805522, or on websites www.antiragging.in, andwww.amanmovement.org. One can also get the anti-ragging affidavits through email registering on the website and keep a track about the progress of their complaints.

Explaining the functioning of the portal, University Grants Commission’s acting chairman Ved Prakash said: “The complaints would be examined. If they are of serious magnitude, they would be transferred immediately to the police, the magistrate and head of the institution”. Kachroo added that the details of every development since registering the complaint will be taken in account and a file will be made to follow up every case.

“There are nearly 40,000 colleges across the country… we will create a database of all colleges,” he said.

Highway facilities require attention

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Highway facilities require attention
There is a serious lack of clean toilets at the highway petrol stations between Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
Even in the existing, limited number of toilets, hygiene needs seem to have been neglected.
Visit one on any given busy evening or morning, and it’s obvious that these toilets are not as well-maintained or cleaned as they should be.
Bear in mind that these are international roads connecting to bordering countries, and that children will need to use them.
I hope the petrol stations and health authorities initiate measures to address this issue.
Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
To read it in original, please visit The National online.

Hungry Drivers

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Hungry drivers
This year being one of the hottest and longest Ramadan days, it is a matter of concern for all who are on the road right before iftar. On the first day of Ramadan, I happened to witness and experience at least three near-accidents in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah roads. This is really dangerous and I hope that no one gets hurt. Could the relevant authorities come out with clear guidelines, stricter rules and fines to those who drive extremely fast?
From Mr Ramesh Menon
Abu Dhabi

To read it in original, please visit GULF NEWS online.

You may please read the below article and actions which followed the above report:

Police warn motorists to drive safely — especially before iftar

Message of safety for Holy Month

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Message of safety for Holy Month
The Holy Month of Ramadan is underway and with it comes renewed worries over road safety.
This year will be one of the hottest and longest Ramadan fasting periods in recent memory; it is a matter of concern for all who are on the road during the period just before breaking the fast.
On the first day of Ramadan, I happened to witness and experience at least three near misses on roads in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah.
Watching these dangerous driving habits made me think that it would be helpful for authorities to come out with stricter rules and fines for those who drive dangerously prior to iftar.
In addition, it would be a great move if warnings and messages about the dangers of speeding during this time were made at various iftar tents and prayer halls around the country. It would also be appropriate for religious scholars to offer messages about the dangers of careless driving.
Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi
To read it in original, please visit The National Online.

You may also read the below article and actions which followed the above article:

Dubai police report 3,605 traffic accidents since start of Ramadan

Making the most of it

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To read the article by Mr. Shashi Tharoo and read the letter in original, please visit GULF NEWS online

Sale and distribution of Mawaqif parking cards

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It would be a good idea if Mawaqif could organise the distribution and sale of parking cards of various denominations through petrol stations and other handy outlets.

Currently, there are only one or two outlets selling these cards and it is inconvenient for the public to obtain them. Also, it is not easy to locate the parking meters in many places.

It would be helpful if the authorities put up some special signage pointing to the parking meters.

Ramesh Menon, Abu Dhabi

To read it in original, please visit The National online.

My name written in Arabic Calligraphy

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My name written in Arabic Calligraphy by world famous Calligraphy artist Mohammed Mandi, from Egypt.

Ramadan Kareem

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Ramadan Kareem to all my friends.