| PICTURE SPEAK |
| "Hard Selling India", February 13 |
"Launching a short-term brand-building campaign is the easiest part of hard selling India as investment destination. The tough part is walking the talk."
Rajesh Trivedi, Gorakhpur
Song And Dance
The "India Everywhere" campaign in Davos was a colourful branding exercise at the right time and at the right place ("Hype & Hard Sell", February 13). It is an expression of the country's new mindset.
A. Jacob Sahayam, Thiruvananthapuram
It seems you have got carried away by your Davos experience. The article reads like those by western experts in economics or law who try to bring in revolutions by giving off-the-cuff tips. Perhaps it was much rosy in Davos, but back home how effective can your advice be?
Devraj Sambasivan, Alleppey
When the best economic and business brains, backed by a strong political will, showcase brand India, the business gathering is bound to sway to their tunes. However, such hardsell will bear fruit only when concerns about the investment environment in the country are addressed. Corruption at high places, overstretched infrastructure, stringent labour laws and an opportunistic political class are some of the major impediments. Besides, there are always mighty saboteurs in the global arena who would not like India to catch up with them.
R.K. Sudan, on e-mail
Besides a dream team of star personalities from the Government and the industry, what really stole the show was an excellent teamwork as each member complemented the other. This convinced the other participants at the World Economic Forum that India meant business.
Navneet Dhawan, Delhi
|PLAIN SPEAKING |
Privatisation of airports is in keeping with the Government's policy of focusing only on the rich ("Ground Clearance", February 13). The common man does not need swanky airports, but basic amenities.
Rohini Mehta, Ahmedabad
Though controversy-ridden, the move to modernise Delhi and Mumbai airports is a timely act. India needs better infrastructure to grow.
Shruti Sharma, Mumbai
If privatisation was a panacea for all problems, no private company would ever have become bankrupt.
The Cabinet reshuffle was an opportunity to infuse young blood, but one finds old Congress loyalists coming back to the Cabinet like homing pigeons ("Jumbo Circus", February 13). Compulsions of coalition politics, not merit, have determined the allocation of key ministries like coal, mines and steel.
M.M. Gurbaxani, Bangalore
Creation of a separate Ministry for Minority Affairs underscores the UPA Government's communal agenda. Rather than eradicating social disparities, the Government seems to be working towards institutionalising the politics of pandering to communal sentiments and crass minoritism.
J.S. Acharya, Hyderabad
The inclusion of Chandigarh MP Pawan K. Bansal in the council of ministers is in keeping with the Congress culture of corruption. Earlier, all his sycophantic efforts had failed to make him a minister. But the moment his involvement in the misuse of MP Local Area Development fund came to light, he qualified for the office. Either Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is helpless or wrongly labelled as Mr Clean.
A.K. Sharma, Chandigarh
Every minister costs the exchequer heavily. In national interest, the maximum number of ministers must be restricted to 10 per cent of the strength of the Lok Sabha as per the original recommendations of the Administrative Reforms Commission, instead of the present 15 per cent.
Subhash C. Agrawal, Delhi
The haste with which the BJP agreed to play second fiddle to the breakaway group of the JD(S) shows just how desperate it was to share power in Karnataka ("Deccan Dynasty", February 13). As far as former prime minister H.D. Deve Gowda is concerned, his stature as a national leader has been compromised because he failed to bring his own son on his side.
D.B.N. Murthy, Bangalore
Car makers are putting emphasis on big and luxury cars ("Ready to Roll", January 30). However, Indian cities do not have enough space on roads and in parking lots for them. So to address this problem the emphasis should be on small cars.
Gautam Bhatia, Delhi
It has been decisively proved that our batsmen are unchallengeable on tracks that favour only batting and on those that have some life in them, they are miserable performers ("Shoot-out Shockers", February 13). Any ordinary bowler can turn out to be a demon for an Indian batsman the moment he is put on a juicy wicket. Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, V.V.S. Laxman, Virendra Sehwag and Rahul Dravid are not raw recruits. Yet, Mohammad Asif and Abdul Razzaq were lions, not lambs, for them because the pitch prepared in Karachi had something in it to offer to a bowler who could intelligently cut, seam and swing the ball.
T.S. Pattabhi Raman, Coimbatore
Indian cricket suffers from over-exposure to the media. There is a tendency to magnify everything and split hairs over the minutest of non-events. This leads to the ridiculous situation of experts eulogising Tendulkar one day and writing obituaries of his game the next day. Dravid is a man who led from the front in the first two Tests but one defeat and he is no more considered inspirational enough. Why can't critics show the same perseverance they expect from the team?
A.V. Karnik, Mumbai
It seems the writer has some personal vendetta against Sourav. The batsman does not have to prove anything and nobody can deny what is there in the records. Apart from his play, people admire him for his guts and ability to speak honestly.
M. Banerjee, Kolkata
Indian cricketers lack killer instinct. I have never seen a game like the third Test between India and Pakistan, in which all 11 Pakistani players contributed something. Even if we lost that game on the third day itself, our batsmen could have shown some fighting spirit. They should learn from Pakistani players, who did not lose hope even at 40 for six.
Shailesh Kaul, on e-mail
Tough to Tango
Our relations with the US can never be mutually beneficial. ("Walking the Thin Line", February 13). American President George W. Bush may be very sweet to India at the moment but when it comes to supporting it openly, his stand changes. India still remains a developing country for the US and a poor ally compared to Pakistan when it comes to the Americans' strategic interests.
Anusha Singh Saharan, Delhi
Today's lifestyle is taking its toll on not just love, sex and marital relationships but all aspects of family life ("No Time For Love", February 6). People do not have time or even the opportunity for once-routine things like outings with the family or following the doctor's prescription. The sad part is that even those who don't want to follow this lifestyle have no choice. One can change one's job but will end up doing the same thing. Today's work culture allows one little time for things like attending the school function of one's child and accompanying one's spouse to hospital. The problem is that people are only after profits and often overlook the human cost. Also, it is not easy to find a job where one can choose to cut down on one's workload with a proportional cut in the pay packet.
S. Varghese, Chennai
Low wages are not the reason for corruption among MPs ("It's the Money, Honey", February 6). It is the decline in ethical values. Religious leaders are preaching politics. Politics has been taken over by criminals and journalists are blindly aping the West.
Parjan Kumar Jain, Delhi