Tongued ties

Updated: Apr 21 2005, 05:30am hrs
While English-speaking Indians may not find it as difficult in Europe today, as compared to a couple of decades before, the Euro-peans pride in their native language remains.

An Indian exporter was at the receiving end of German pride, when he mentioned at an India-EU workshop in Delhi that the language barrier was a big problem for Indians in Germany. He narrated that when on a business tour in Germany he was asking his way around in English, he was told by a German, in English, that he did not know the language and could only reply if spoken to in German.

What he got from the minister-counsellor from the German embassy was a rebuff. If you want to do business in our country, you better learn the language. Dont expect us to learn English for you, was the short, but sharp, retort. Point taken. Danke.

Premature reformers

A host of companies are queuing at the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) office to make presentations, with the aim of becoming fund managers, even as the issue of pension reforms continues in a state of limbo.

Interestingly, the PFRDA is not yet a statutory body. The government is yet to decide if it wants to continue with the said reforms, by shifting from the defined benefit to the defined contribution system. We have people from all over who come and put up presentations. We welcome all, but we are in no position to regulate, or take any decisions at this point of time, a senior member says.