Shadow on Kerala Tourism

Nipah virus outbreak in parts of Kozhikode may hit tourism in Kerala. The situation comes at a time when the tourism sector is on revival mode after the Covid pandemic.

The stakeholders fear the virus can cast a shadow on the upcoming season which normally starts from September. They feel the need for some confidence-building measures on the part of Kerala Tourism, like clarifying that the virus outbreak is localised and the remaining part of the State is safe for travel. Hygiene improvement in public places and normalcy at airports with no special health screenings are also needed to encourage tourist arrivals.

Not a stand-up comedian

Pawan Goenka, Chairman, Steering Committee on Advancing Local value-add & Exports (SCALE), Ministry of Commerce and Industry, had to do some extra talking recently. “I have a very tough job right now. I have to keep speaking till the Minister comes here and he has not yet started from his home,” he said at an event (in the last session of SIAM Convention).

Goenka was referring to Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, who was late for the session by more than one-and-a-half hours. Goenka who had spoken for more than 30 minutes, was finally informed that the Minister was five minutes away, to which he said, “I can’t joke, I am not a stand-up comedian. If there is someone here, he/she is welcome to do so here.”

Thrust on indigenisation

Sridhar Vembu, CEO of Zoho, is an evangelist of indigenisation. At the 11th Convocation of the Indian Institute of Information Technology, Design and Manufacturing, Kancheepuram, he narrated an example of a simple nail cutter to send a strong message to the graduating students on how the country is heavily dependent on foreign technology and machinery.

He said, if you go to a local shop and buy a nail cutter, it will not say Made in India, but Made in South Korea, in China, Taiwan or in Japan. This is because the steel in making the nail cutter is non-trivial. The automated machinery that makes the nail cutter is non-trivial. The machinery behind the making of the nail cutter is very complex. There are many such examples. Work on technology and critical R&D, invent, reinvent and rediscover, said Vembu, who was recently appointed as the Chairman of the Board of Governors of IIITDM, Kancheepuram.

Trading barbs

The Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) and the Congress, which are getting ready for elections in Telangana, have got something new to fight about. The Enforcement Directorate’s latest notice to K Kavitha, a BRS leader and daughter of Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, triggered an argument between the two parties.

She was responding to senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh’s statement that Kavitha should focus on her ED case instead of criticising Rahul Gandhi. (At a recent meeting, she termed Rahul Gandhi an outdated leader.) Taking potshots at Ramesh, Kavitha wondered what happened to the ED cases against Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi in the National Herald case. “Looks like there is an understanding between the BJP and the Congress,” she said.