Kant’s quick wit

At the recent CII Annual Business Summit 2024, G20 India Sherpa Amitabh Kant provided pivotal advice to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII). Kant emphasised the necessity for CII to engage more actively with States and not shy away from calling out underperforming States and politicians.

In response to Kant’s comment on the need for growth not just in southern and western India but also in mineral-rich eastern India, a leading industrialist questioned as to why this growth was not occurring (in the eastern region).

“It is not happening because — one, CII spends too much time in Delhi. You keep doing all your Annual Conferences only in Delhi with same set of people all the time. You should move out to the States. Secondly, you must name and shame the States and State politicians who underperform,” Kant quipped.

CCI’s ‘adulthood’

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) celebrates its 15th annual day on May 20, the pivot from adolescence to near adulthood symbolises a transformative era for this key economic regulator. With 15 years under its belt, CCI is stepping into a mature phase.

With expectations scaling new heights, the CCI’s approach needs to mirror the matured marketplace it governs, say economy watchers.

Indeed, as the CCI gears up to embrace its ‘adulthood’, the stakes are high, and not only India but the entire world — thanks to India’s enhanced economic integration with the world over the last decade — is watching, they noted !

High stakes drama

Delhi’s political scene is ablaze as AAP MP Swati Maliwal levels serious assault charges against Bibhav Kumar, Arvind Kejriwal’s trusted aide. Maliwal alleges Kumar slapped, kicked, and harassed her at the CM’s residence, stirring a hornet’s nest of speculation.

Amidst the drama, whispers suggest Maliwal might be aligning with BJP to dodge potential legal troubles, including arrest by Anti Corruption Bureau, in a recruitment scam when she was Chief of Delhi Commission for Women, while others hint at deeper rifts within AAP.

This scandal, with its mix of high-stakes politics and personal vendettas, has Delhi talking, diverting attention from peak election campaign when Delhi’s electorate are going to cast their vote on May 25.

Clocked out

In Maharashtra, BJP’s die-hard supporters are in a state of utter confusion. The party has teamed up with Sharad Pawar’s rebel nephew, Ajit Pawar, who not only snatched the party name and symbol from his uncle but also joined forces with the BJP alliance.

Ajit’s NCP is contesting four seats with its clock symbol, and BJP leaders are urging voters to support the clock. However, for BJP supporters, the clock symbol is like a red rag to a bull. In a hilarious incident in the Baramati constituency, a BJP supporter stormed into the polling booth, frantically searching for the lotus symbol, the BJP’s emblem.

He got into a heated argument with the polling officers, insisting that the lotus was missing from the voting machine. When informed that the lotus and clock are now allies, the old man was so enraged that he stormed out of the polling station without casting his vote!