Down To Earth articles on shahtoosh and Veerappan provoke comment. We decided to excerpt them. But first, the editor s rejoinder

While the Union government has finally permitted Tamil Nadu to export sandalwood, State monopoly of the trade is yet to be abolished

Catching Veerappan, who amuses himself upsetting the government cart, is like trying to cage a titan. The State is in no position to meet his conditions for surrender. But his willingness to give up an outlaw s life has raised questions about precedents

Is Veerappan playing his last ace? Or is he having the last laugh on the incompetence of the State machinery?

Despite heavy deployment of police, Veerappan has remained elusive. The Special Task Force used the ugliest tactics to track him down, but failed

Veerappan s history has been written in red in official records. But support from high places as much as from the ordinary people has sustained him

How poor decision making encourages crime

How smuggling has affected villagers in Veerappan s area

A scribe did what the State could not he reached Veerappan