Opinion

Damage control

| Updated on November 15, 2017 Published on January 15, 2012

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While it rained investments and corporates queued up to sign MoUs at the recent Partnership Summit in Hyderabad, the situation was quite the opposite in West Bengal.

The much-hyped ‘Bengal Leads' summit ended up being an embarrassment for the State Government and bureaucrats. It opened to empty stalls and a lukewarm response on day one.

A senior official of a global auto major faced a nearly empty auditorium, with very few Government officials.

The Government, in obvious damage-control mode, ordered “all state government officials” to be present at the venue on all days and in all meetings, irrespective of their schedule.

Think global, act local!

State-owned oil marketing companies revise petrol prices every fortnight based on the ruling spot rates for gasoline in Singapore.

Well, that's how it is supposed to be, at least in theory for this ‘deregulated' fuel. But with the ruling UPA Government led by Congress (I) facing a big test ahead in elections in States such as Uttar Pradesh and Punjab, oil firms have virtually shelved — not voluntarily, of course — any price hike plans.

In other words, till the poll process gets over in February-end, it is not Singapore but Kanpur, Phulpur and Gurdaspur that will decide fuel prices.

Coming clean

The Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, Kiran Kumar Reddy, startled a large gathering of corporates at the CII-Partnership Summit with his candid admission that the industry would have spent about Rs 2,500 crore for various ‘third party' transactions and ‘bribes' in getting Government approvals.

His disclosure came as he tried to convince the high-profile audience that the Government-to-Business portal being launched by his Government would help them save both time and money.

Would such an eager Government suffer corruption till such time as the portal is ready?

Caught on camera

At the annual photo exhibition organised by the Photo-journalists Association of Bangalore, a minister in the BJP-ruled state government, who was also the chief guest for the event, tactfully avoided all the photographs featuring former CM, B.S. Yeddyurappa.

On the other hand, Congress MLA Roshan Baig had no problems posing with the former CM's photographs. Such is the state of political loyalties.

Mallya's tweet

Says a tweet from Vijay Mallya: “Looks like the oversupply of aviation journalists will have to take a pay cut if Kingfisher does not make daily headlines — correct or not!' To which a reporter has a ready answer: ‘Incorrect, Mr Mallya, we are not like your cabin crew!'

Contributed by Abhishek Law, Harish Damodaran, G. Naga Sridhar, Aditi Nigam, G.R.N. Somashekar, Anjali Prayag.

Published on January 15, 2012
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