Letters to the Editor February 21, 2020

| Updated on February 21, 2020 Published on February 21, 2020

Good reforms

This refers to the editorial ‘Cropped insurance’ (February 21). The changes in the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana are timely and well thought out. An insurable trigger needs to be all-encompassing and insurers need to be able to model it. Now, insurance companies will have to tailor-make covers for farmers. The new approach must reach banks, insurance companies, and most importantly, farmers, if it is to increase farm income. It will help if information is highlighted in branch premises, panchayat offices and other places. Revamping the insurance scheme augurs well, and fine-tuning based on the response will strengthen it.

NK Bakshi


Investment behaviour

Apropos ‘The real state of LIC’s investment portfolio’ (February 21). Indeed, LIC, the country’s institutional kingpin in the equity and bond market, is now under the scanner for its investment pattern on a humongous sum of ₹30.55 lakh crore . LIC’s NPAs of ₹32,200 crore, though small in size when compared to the quantum of its investment assets, raises alarm bells on the lapses of LIC’s investment policies.

Taking into account the current scenario of prolonged slowdown and dismal corporate performance, LIC should exercise caution in investing equities and debentures of companies and stand with strong guarantee for the hard-earned money of the policyholders.

The government should not use LIC money to inject in incessant loss-making banks with high NPAs. As per IRDA regulations, insurers are required to invest the bulk of premium collected in approved securities of State and Central government bonds and highly rated corporate bonds, not save banks with high NPA pile-up.

NR Nagarajan


Growth opportunity

Apropos ‘India can be the next big global supplier’ (February 21). Every crisis or adverse situation presents an opportunity, and it is up to us to leverage it for our benefit. Coronavirus, which has taken more than 2,000 lives across China, is bound to impact global trade adversely. During the US-China trade war, it was countries like Vietnam and Bangladesh who moved to boost their businessand India could not realise the potential on time.

Indeed, it is an golden opportunity for India to showcase itself as a true alternative to China. China has thrived and catapulted its economy on the back of humongous manufacturing capacities. For replicating China’s excess capacity creation model, India must create an ecosystem which is able to supply over and above the domestic consumption and better its trade pact and taxation policy.

The cost of capital can be brought down if the government clearly identifies few sectors for the lenders to target and help MSMEs in those sectors with easy finance. In addition, single-window clearance to projects would go a long way in helping India become a big export economy.

Bal Govind


Congress’ woes

This refers to ‘Now, Tharoor asks CWC to resolve leadership issues’ (February 21). It goes without saying that such a well-meaning demand for ‘transparently and democratically’ sorting out the central leadership issue of the highly beleagured Congress could not have come at any better time. This view gains more prominence as Shashi Tharoor endorsed former MP Sandeep Diskhit’s reported comments that the leadership question is the biggest challenge before the party even as several senior leaders favour elections for all posts in the party.

Needless to say, all may not be currently well within the Congress ever since it scored a lame duck during the Delhi Assembly elections for the second time in a row. But notwithstanding all this, the moot question obviously arises: Who will bell the cat in this dynasty-ridden party?

SK Gupta

New Delhi


The news item on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to South Korea in the ‘Five things to watch out for today’ section relates to his visit to the country last year. The error is regretted.

Published on February 21, 2020
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