Letters to the Editor dated December 5, 2019

| Updated on December 07, 2019

Economic priorities

This is with reference to the editorial ‘Misplaced priorities’ (December 5). If India has to become $5 trillion economy, we have to do away with the freebies culture and seriously give a thought to major investments in the infrastructure, health, education, and labour-intensive sectors. India is a young country with more than 65 per cent of its population below 35 years of age. The first task for the government is to create job opportunities for the younger generation. Sustained economic growth with investments in infrastructure projects, and encouragement to small-scale and cottage industries will go a long way in creating employment opportunities for the youth.

Second, vigorous steps should be taken to make the investment procedures simple and hassle-free. Third, despite the vast potential, India is not considered a tourist destination due to a variety of reasons such as crimes against foreigners and poor maintenance of tourist destinations. The government should go the extra mile to maintain cleanliness. Fourth, a workforce devoid of medical benefits is less productive. Hence, a substantial amount should be reserved for providing better health facilities for the people.

Veena Shenoy


Karvy episode

This refers to ‘Karvy case and the game brokers play’ (December 5). The Karvy episode has clearly shown how a dishonest custodian can put thousands of people’s hard-earned life savings to risk. It is good that SEBI intervened in the matter and transferred most of the securities back to the investors. When a 36-year-old stock broking firm like Karvy engages in unethical practices like diverting clients’ money into real estate business, it creates a huge trust deficit amongst retail investors. The need to provide an expansive power of attorney to the broker to open a demat account is the root cause for the problem. What SEBI needs to do is to differentiate between traders and investors. The latter would certainly stay invested for a long period of time and should not be asked to give power of attorney rights to their brokers.

Retail investors, in general, are wary of the equities market and such kind of incidents will only act as a deterrent. While almost 80,000 investors have got their securities back, entities that have extended loans to Karvy are in a soup as the only recourse available to them is to file a criminal case and initiate insolvency proceedings. It’s going to be a long-drawn battle between the lenders and Karvy.

Bal Govind



Driving away investors

This is with reference to ‘India still has a long way to go on reforms, says World Bank’ (December 5). India is giving investors many a reason to move away. Here are a few of them. One, the recent ruling on AGR has led to panic in the telecom industry. The ruling is retrospective in nature and ignores the fact that the case was judged in favour of Bharti Airtel in the previous five rounds.

Two, the decision of the newly sworn-in Maharashtra government to put a hold on a metro project shows that we have been unable to decouple reforms with long lead time from changing political fortunes. And, three, in the Karvy case, SEBI went against the lenders by transferring shares to investors even though banks had given loan against those shares. This creates immense uncertainty for lenders. Hence the the World Bank’s comment is relevant and our leaders need to take some hard decisions that de-link long-term reforms from politics, clarify regulations, and give clear guidelines to corporations.

Neeti Gupta



Hygenic food

There’s been yet another shocking news of a dead rat found in the mid-day meal for school children in Muzaffarnagar (UP). Complaints of unhygienic food served in trains are also routine. The system should be such that only packaged food is served. The government can motivate companies to provide packaged food under the Corporate Social Responsibility provision. A better option would be for IRCTC to set up units in all districts for providing packaged food for the mid-day meal scheme as well as in trains

Madhu Agrawal

New Delhi

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Send your letters by email to bleditor@thehindu.co.in or by post to ‘Letters to the Editor’, The Hindu Business Line, Kasturi Buildings, 859-860, Anna Salai, Chennai 600002.

Published on December 05, 2019

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