Wednesday, February 27, 2013

"The most painful experience is being in business in India."

Few years ago I use to regularly analyse the trends of doing business both country level and sub-region level and always felt that its extremely painful to look at the data in comparison with other country like China. 

Thanks to friend Athiyaman. The title of this post comes from this interview with noted Indian businessman. Its a must read one. Here is a bit from it:

Looking back, what has been your biggest regret?

I have been an employee for many years, and an employee-cum-businessman for about 10 years. And then, I have been solely a businessman. I have had different kinds of experiences.
I don’t regret anything. I take life as it comes. There is no point in regretting. You can ask me which experience was unpleasant and which one pleasant. Being in employment is wonderful. The most painful experience is being in business in India. The ease of doing business is one of the worst in India. The difficulties and pains associated with doing business is probably the highest in India as opposed to most other countries.

Why then are you continuing in it?

It’s like getting on to a tiger, and you can’t get off. You have to make the best of the bad bargain, and this is the experience of all businessmen. The outside world thinks that the businessmen are happy, and that they have lot of money. The attitude towards businessmen should be that of sympathy and support. Unfortunately, it is marked by jealousy.

According to Raghuram Rajan, “government regulations aim for impossible”. A person who enters the business goes around these regulations, and finds a way to avoid them. Finally, he is caught, because he is avoiding these regulations.

You then try to put more regulations to see that he doesn’t avoid them. Regulations are the starting cause of bribery. Such a system is designed for corruption. All these regulations are created by government because there are too many employees, too many offices, too many departments and too many executives who have nothing positive to think.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

"Congress gain is nation's loss"

Prof Arvind Panagariya has very timely and brave article in The Economic Times. It is titled as "Congress' bail out of bankrupt Scooters India is party's gain at nation's loss"

Read the tragedies here:
  • "Prime Minister Manmohan Singh later instructed him to prepare a bailout package in consultation with the BIFR. That proposal has now culminated in the Rs 200-crore dole to the company. To his credit, finance minister Chidambaram protested in the Cabinet meeting but Singh, almost surely under instructions from Congress president Sonia Gandhi, overruled him. It makes no economic sense to throw hard-earned rupees of taxpayers at a company that has been declared sick by the BIFR, a verdict the bureau rarely delivers, preferring to advise restructuring. With an aged workforce whose protection is probably the sole purpose of the bailout, 1970s machinery that should have been retired decades ago and management that hails from civil service and has no real expertise in auto manufacturing, there is no chance that it can compete against the modern day auto giants that together produce 8,50,000 three-wheelers every year.Why did the government ignore the obvious? The easy explanation is politics. Scooters India is located in the capital city of Uttar Pradesh (UP), the home state of the Gandhi family." 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

New age of Liberalism in India

Two friends have contributed interestingly. Rajeev and Harsh has a piece in the Indian Express here, their other articles are here. Ghanshyam has  a piece on Hinduism and capitalism in India in Centre Right India.

Rajeev and Harsh concludes with the below paras:

  • Liberals of all hues should advocate for strengthening the law-and-order machinery so that no violence — irrespective of its antecedents — goes unpunished. State welfare programmes should be targeted to those in economic need, and not bluntly based upon caste or religious identity. The government also shouldn't have discretion on what constitutes offensive speech, to prevent politicians from fuelling competitive intolerance.
  • When the state has no discretion to pick certain groups as winners, fraternity is more likely to prevail because socio-economic intercourse, unlike political competition, is not a zero-sum game. India needs more liberalism — rule of law, open markets, separation of identity and state — not its leftist perversion.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

B R Ambedkar on "spiritualism"

Very interesting!!

  • "Between Weber and Heidegger, thus, there was the young Ambedkar in New York (1916) who had called spiritualism the unethical apparition of “brute force,” the self-legitimising and ritualised “force of law,” the deathless “ghost” of violence masquerading as religious generosity and universalism. It was Ambedkar who formulated the idea that we should be wary of narratives of crisis; that the category of crisis as such, whether of self, soul, or tradition, was less poignant than it was a warning of a new hegemony, a new conservative consensus, a new economy of contempt beginning to gather force." More here.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Shri Dondu Raghavan Sir is no more

It was a big sad day for me yesterday. The news came from my good friend Shri Jayakamal who informed that one of our great Tamil blogger and translator is no more.

The great Tamil blogger and Asia's No.1 Tamil translator Shri Dondu Raghavan Sir is no more with us. He passed away day before yesterday due to sudden heart attack. I had the pleasure of meeting in Chennai along with my friends. I still cannot forget a single word from our conversation! I miss him a lot.

Here is a great editorial in the Tamil Dinakaran newspaper on Shri Dondu Sir. 

He used to write a great Tamil blog called "Dondus dos and dont donts". He last blog post was on 4th February, 2013. He also wrote a English blog called "Musings of a Translator"

There was no one to compete with him on translation works among languages like Tamil, English, German, French and Hindi not only in India but in entire Asia!!

He had translated many of English articles into Tamil that I and my great friend Shre Jayakamal shared with him after reading. The following are some list:

Articles sent by Jayakamal:

4. சார்நீங்கதான் ஆடம் ஸ்மித்னு நினைக்கிறேன் (