The editorial ‘Bad example’ (January 13) highlights the findings of a CAG report on PSUs. While the finding would not come as a shock to most readers, it is appalling that so many PSUs have even failed to comply with appointment of directors, including independent directors. Does it mean they are failing to find enough pliable ‘Yes men’ to fill their boards with?
In recent times, companies under a few ministries have been rewarded with rising share prices and thus improved the value of the government’s stake. While good business prospects called for such re-rating, good governance has also likely played a role. One hopes that many more PSUs would reform their practices and set shining examples of efficiency, transparency, accountability and good governance.
This refers to ‘Govt likely to review OMC losses post the Budget’ (January 13). It’s surprising that oil marketing companies have incurred losses to the extent of ₹27,276 crore during F1 of FY2023 on sale of diesel even as international crude oil prices fell by 40-45 per cent this month from the record highs in April 2022.
But why couldn’t these companies capitalise on the massive decline in global crude oil prices even as end-users continued to bear the brunt of administratively jacked up prices of not only auto fuels but various other petro-products. Did they miss the bus by grossly misreading the global ground realities?
Step up capex
Apropos ‘Accelerating growth via capex’ (January 13), for a country’s long term economic growth, capital expenditure (capex) forms the base which triggers manufacturing and production activities in many allied sectors. It also creates huge employment opportunities.
The Centre, on its part, has been raising the capex allotment in the recent annual Budgets. Liberal investments for creating additional railway, highway, airport, port and other logistics infrastructure would help improve ease of living. Close to 60 railway stations have been identified for redevelopment, and the metro rail network is expanding to many major cities and towns.
Gender gap in labour
This refers to ‘Societal reform is vital for bridging the gender gap in labour market’ (January 13). The article lucidly explains the need for deep-rooted reforms in social perceptions to reduce the gender gap in labour participation in India.
However, some factors inhibit women from seeking employment. Apprehensions about sexual harassment at work, remote postings, hazardous jobs and locations, disparity in compensation for same or similar kind of jobs, and skill-job mismatch are some of them. Studies show that female participation at higher level jobs is progressing at a snail’s pace.
Apropos ‘Accessible legal services’ (January 13). The lack of infrastructure, adequate number of judges/staff position and limitless adjournments are the main causes for delayed justice in our country. This can be rectified to some extent if the government promotes online dispute resolution of at least some demarcated cases in addition to third party funding by an external agency for filing and maintenance of litigations.
Katuru Durga Prasad Rao