Letters

Letters to the editor dated February 19, 2021

| Updated on February 19, 2021

Pricey fuels

This refers to the editorial ‘Time to cut’ (February 19). It is rather surprising to note the stubborn attitude exhibited by the Centre and State governments in not providing succour to the common man in terms of fuel pricing. While the recent Budget has been hailed as “investor, industry and infra-centric”, is the government so naïve as not to understand the debilitating impact of frequent oil price hikes on the public?

Apart from taxation issues involved in the pricing of the fuels, the international sanctions imposed on Iran, especially by the US, have a major role in the elevated global crude prices. Iran has been India’s second largest supplier of oil after Saudi Arabia until 2010-11, supplying oil at a concessional rate, including providing insurance cover during transit. This had to be stopped from May 2019 to comply with US sanctions on Iran over its nuclear programme. India should not be allowed to be bullied by the unilateral application of extra-territorial sanctions on third countries for enforcing US foreign policy goals.

On pricing of fuel, India is caught between international and domestic issues that are playing havoc, choking India’s economic growth and consumption. It is estimated that for every 10 per cent increase in fuel prices, GDP will shrink 0.1 per cent. Hope the ruling high fuel prices do not prove to be the Achilles’ Heel of the government in the long run.

Srinivasan Velamur

Chennai

Targeting the bureaucracy

Apropos ‘Is the time up for babus?’ (February 19). While what the Prime Minister said in Parliament recently does seem logical, one should not ignore the fact that babus have been running our institutions for years. Yes, this system has its own flaws and needs to be addressed. The kind of massive administrative experience an IAS officer gets over the years cannot easily be found in the private sector. But private sector executives run an organisation without any fear.

If in the government sector the infamous 4Cs are kept in check, the executives can go all out and turnaround sick and non-performing organisations.

Bal Govind

Noida

Racing ahead

This is in reference to ‘Daimler India sees early recovery in volumes’ (February 19). The recovery in volumes will be at an exponential pace in future due to increased capex on infrastructure as per the recent Budget announcement. Although Daimler India Commercial Vehicles has doubled its market share, it is critical to enhance manufacturing capacity to gain a pie of the increasing market size. Multiple winners are possible in this space and it will be interesting to see the segments where each player stands out.

Neeti Gupta

Bengaluru

Healthcare system

Apropos ‘Covid has strengthened our health system’ (February 19), the pandemic has made the people and the government realise the importance of the health sector which has hitherto been neglected. The government needs to make innovative changes in the health sector with emphasis on research and affordable medical education.

Also, it is the responsibility of the government to facilitate the provision of affordable and good medical facilities to all the people of the country. One of the main reasons for the pathetic state of the health sector is the lack of good hospitals for the poor. This needs to improve.

The government should focus on setting up more medical colleges that cater to all strata of society. A decent amount should be allocated for medical research, the lack of which is driving many of our medical professionals to seek a brighter future/career abroad. Little wonder there are nearly 3.5 lakh doctors of Indian origin in the US. This brain drain can be prevented by providing doctors with facilities for research and starting medical units.

The Covid pandemic has also made people realise the importance “ayurveda”, the age-old Indian system of medicine. The government should provide assistance for the setting up more ayurvedic centres.

Veena Shenoy

Thane

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.

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Published on February 19, 2021
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