PC needs reboot – Ravi Shanker Kapoor

PC needs reboot – Ravi Shanker Kapoor

Finance Minister P. Chidambaram is known as a liberalizer in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government. Though he hasn’t done as much as one would have expected him given the grim economic scenario and the grimmer fiscal deficit, he did manage to curtail some expenditure in the last fiscal; the revised estimate of total government expenditure was 96 per cent of the Budgetary estimate. But he has done too little and too late; his other Cabinet colleagues have either not done anything positive or have actually hurt the cause of the economy (remember Jairam Ramesh?). Yet, Chidambaram seems to believe that he would be able to convince global investors to come to India. He wants foreign direct investment (FDI) to flow into the country. Addressing the international media in New York, he recently said, “We as a country can easily absorb $50 billion investments [in] a year or more. In the hierarchy of foreign inflows FDI ranks first, followed by FII and external commercial borrowings. FDI is important to India too as in any other country.” Did you say $50 billion, Mr. Minister? Well, some reality check is called for. Consider the Posco project in Orissa as a paradigm case—the paradigm of the UPA regime’s perversity. The Korean steel major began its odyssey, or ordeal, around the same time the UPA came to power for the first time. It pledged to invest $12 billion. Typically, a rainbow coalition of professional revolutionaries, garrulous jholawallahs, incorrigible naysayers, and downright Luddites attacked the proposed steel plant. Worse, their opposition to the project does not emanate from a genuine concern for the locals, something that could have been sorted out; their resistance was is doctrinaire: the project is bad because it would ruin the environment, exploit the tribal people, etc. Period. No discussion, no dialogue. Posco has to go. What was even worse was the UPA government’s mollycoddling of the elements determined to drive Posco out of India. Ministers like Ramesh brazenly encouraged the radicals who are hell-bent on de-industrializing India. Then there are anti-business bigots in the Sonia Gandhi-headed National Advisory Council (NAC). In July 2010, a 10-member committee under NAC member N.C. Saxena visited Orissa and...

Awakened from a deep slumber- is it enough to hold the ship up in bad weather? – Abhimanyu Naruka

Awakened from a deep slumber- is it enough to hold the ship up in bad weather? – Abhimanyu Naruka

At the dawn of the 20th century India moved briskly towards a free market economy and increased financial liberalisation. With these initiations things have improved in our country, especially sectors related to infrastructure, medical, education and services. Now the question here is, are these actions good enough to stand with world top economies, considering the fact that globalisation has increased the interdependence among all the major economies. The global economy is presently going through some rough phase post the American recession and the on going Euro zone crisis has had its effect on our economy, especially on our exports. This in turn is reducing the income of our nation and putting a counter effect on our Balance of trade. In simple words our nation’s income is reducing, but on the other hand side we just cant let the expenditure fall on important sectors in our country, thus presently our country is facing the problem of Fiscal deficit. Since august it seems the finance ministry team has woken up from deep sleep because we have seen a barrage of economic reforms in last three months, the most debated one FDI. Obviously these reforms seems to provide a fresh lease to our economy and as far as the FDI decision is concerned it is the responsibility of  the administration to look after the interests of the retailers specially in the rural and small town sections. But as the saying goes we need to work on these reforms and get the interest of the Investors going on our country otherwise we are going to leg behind China and Brazil. In past decade or so our country has seen massive urbanisation, though standard of living in urban areas has improved, on the same side there is little difference in the life of rural population. Rural issues are dying day by day, we still have infrastructure scarcity in these areas and a lot of agricultural issues are still unresolved. Government needs to take some dire actions with regard to this problem. One another trend which seem to have emerged in past decade or so is our rate of saving is going down, Urban India is playing a major role...

Vote and watch in Gujarat – Priti Jain

Vote and watch in Gujarat – Priti Jain

Accusations, allegations, denunciation, vituperation and defamations shun our politicians to the greatest abyss of their careers. They are highly talked about in the media, their parties become busy cleaning their mess up and they start measuring their words before speaking in public. And when the elections are nearing be it regional or national the action is manifold. With the upcoming elections in the state of Gujarat, taking place in two phases on the 13th and the 17th of December, the political one upping is in full swing. The popularity of the Modi government has been castigating the ill-efforts of the Congress party for a decade now. His new technological sprint in the form of 3D speeches and Google+ talks with the common man has certainly given him an edge over the opposition. No doubt this received a mixed response but somewhere down the line his experimentation is commendable. The congress may scream all it wants, disgracing him as a distant politician having no time for direct contact with the people; things are changing, unlike the wasteful tactics of Congress. If they believe in the mettle of direct contact, why have they been unable in stirring the masses? Narendra Modi has won over all the business tycoons and turned his state into an industrial haven. His state being greatly dependent on the agricultural and manufacturing sector, he took the right step in bringing in investment opportunities. Gujarat is a businessman’s land, so inviting potential investments is simply sustaining the statehood of Gujarat. Leadership can never be confined to giving speeches and setting goals, being an opportunist is equally important. A conventional economic model does not allow a state to continually depend on its primary and secondary sector. An increase in the tertiary sector is an indicator of development and growth. Modi did realize the urgent need to shift to this sector. The main and the only problem then becomes the inevitable prioritization of the latter. The failure lies in the balancing act. India itself has failed in the commensuration of the former sectors; let alone Gujarat. For one to be happy, the other person automatically has to be sad, so then what is this inclusive...

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