Letters to the editor: Govt must act on black money

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Published: November 1, 2014 12:36 PM

Apropos of the edit “Larger consequences” (October 30), it is a sad reflection...

Govt must act on black money

Apropos of the edit “Larger consequences” (October 30), it is a sad reflection on us that after decades we are yet to get a grip over our financial systems. And now a globalised economy has only added mist to the maze. The intervention of the apex court has not come too soon. It has managed to wipe away the political overtones thus far dominating the issue of unaccounted money and to restore a hitherto absent focus on containing the problem. Hopefully, we may see the modest beginnings of a comprehensive approach by government, be it on political funding, a tax regime that encourages evasion,vagueness in regulation that abets misuse of discretion and protracted bilateral agreements over flow of money between nations. The effort would be painstaking and involve patience and determination. But then India, on October 29, failed to attend a meeting in Berlin of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) where 51 countries signed an agreement to share financial data and boost efforts to crack down on tax evasion inter alia requiring a commitment to follow international standards of confidentiality of information received relating to black money. The signatories were most of the European Union nations as well as tax havens like Liechenstein, British Virgin Island and the Cayman Island .The government has to show far greater commitment. The coal allocation mess has provided us lessons already. The apex court can only do that much and no more. It would be unfortunate if the judiciary is called upon too frequently to reset directions.

R Narayanan


Indians first for Make in India

Apropos of the edit “Is the defence working?” (October 29), the newest deal is the result of the government decision to open up the defence sector with FDI up to 49%. Traditionally, the Indian government has been dithering over private sector supplying to the defence sector. A case in point are the Tatra trucks which are manufactured in India in collaboration with Bharat Earth Movers Limited. Tata, Mahindra, and Ashok Leyland have world-class manufacturing capabilities. Then why is their potential not being fully utilised? With modern manufacturing facilities coupled with strong R&D, Indian truck manufacturers are second to none. Yet the government is ignoring the Indian companies. Most of the manufacturers in the West would like to join hands with Indian manufacturers for the simple reason that Indian has emerged as biggest purchaser of defence equipment and thanks to growing automobile industry, ancillary units with world-class technology are already in operation in India. Above all, there is ample availability of cheap labour.

MM Gurbaxani


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