Monday, August 15th, 2022 22:20:14

When Bharat Is Missing In India…

Updated: September 14, 2013 1:32 pm

What a joke! Important documents relating to the coal scam are missing, and the so-called autonomous agency CBI is helpless to investigate further, as the custodian of the country himself is involved in the important investigation. It’s a shame that the Prime Minister of the biggest democracy is allegedly involved neck-deep in corruption and is being hounded by the Opposition for a scam involving crores of rupees. Corruption has become a brand name for the UPA, as numerous investigations pile up against many former ministers. Indicting the UPA government on various issues has become the daily menu of the judiciary. The PM’s irresponsibility is evident from the manner in which he left to   attend the G-20 Nations Summit, without clarifying his stand, and he adamantly chose just to make a statement in the House.

                Crucial documents remain on the missing list, despite the PM claiming in the Rajya Sabha that 150,000 pages have been handed over to the CBI. A fresh list prepared by the CBI, given to Attorney General Goolam E. Vahanvati, has the names of six companies named in FIRs, whose documents remain untraceable. It was earlier reported that files relating to several accused companies have not been made available to the CBI. An official document that the AG has annexed with his letter of September 2, 2013 to the Coal Secretary has details of crucial documents that have a direct bearing on the CBI probe and are missing. It must be noted that during 2006-09, 204 coal blocks were allocated to state-run and private companies. Of these, licences of 40 blocks were later cancelled. The Congress-led-UPA seems to be on the   defensive as the PM had clarified that the government had cooperated with the CAG and the CBI and that the matter of allocation of coal blocks was sub-judice and the court was looking into all aspects of the controversial allocations. It is starkly clear that the government is trying to cover-up the issue of the missing files. This is a very serious issue on which the government has failed to take the House into confidence. It is worth mentioning that Law Minister Ashwini Kumar had to resign for making changes in the status report of the CBI on the coal block allocations. Furthermore, while Coal Minister Sri Prakash Jaiswal has now claimed that only seven files are missing, the CBI has said 157 files related to the allocations are untraceable. It is no secret that there was arbitrary allocation and acts of nepotism and favoritism in coal block allocation. Hence, this government cannot go scot free in the coal scam. It should explain what action has been taken till now on the missing files.

It is this indifference and lack of concern of the government which has resulted in the plunge in several sectors. The rupee is going down, so is the Sensex. Inflation has hit the roof. India is grappling with a current account deficit (CAD) of $80 billion that is exerting tremendous pressure on the rupee. Controlling imports and reducing the trade imbalance are obviously one of the key strategies for reigning in the CAD. In fact, the government’s extravagant spending on the non-essentials and on the non-desirable are the main reasons for the present state of affairs. Another equally serious reason is corruption in the system, which is preventing investments from yielding tangible benefits to the citizens through value generation. Our society, of which the middle class forms the major chunk, is unfortunately given to high consumption lifestyle aping the west, be it in consuming the natural resources or the goods and services. While the affordability of individuals in this chunk has gone up, their lifestyle has become unaffordable for the country and the eco-system. I am not talking about the rich, not that they are not guilty of this. In fact, they are worse but as they constitute a small percentage in terms of the numbers, the impact is not so pronounced. Through liberalisation and globalisation, we have opened our markets for others to exploit but we are not able to penetrate other markets like the Chinese are able to do so. The country is clearly heading towards an economic emergency, but unfortunately, those at the helm of affairs seem to have run out of ideas crucial for steering the economy back on track. India should drastically cut down its subsidy bill, if it wants to regain the robust growth that was once upon a time we were proud of! Some intellectuals have found vastu problems with the rupee. I feel pity on them. To cure the disease, one needs medicine, likewise, we need to take stern actions and thought-provoking policy to regain our economy. Otherwise, in the coming days, violent people will come on the roads with empty bellies, and empty bellies do not understand what they are doing. It has never happened in the history of Bharat, but may   happen in India in future. In fact, the fabric of culture and patriotism of Bharat is found missing in India. Is Sonia Gandhi listening?

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