Letter: A present to honour the past

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The Independent Online
Sir: With reference to the debate on the anniversary of D-Day, I would like to draw your attention to the decision by Russia to commemorate the end of the great siege of Leningrad by giving every survivor of the blockade 10,000 roubles and free travel for life on all city and regional transport.

My informant, who lives in St Petersburg, does not specify whether it is the national government or the city council that is responsible for this initiative, but makes it clear how very welcome it is to the many, including her husband, who can no longer afford or are unable to drive a car, and find fares escalating. Is this a gesture worth emulating?

Yours faithfully,


Newbury, Berkshire