why we need more jio-styled cos, and psu need to cut costs

the world is becoming ultra-competitive, all thanks to greater than ever dissemination of information through electronic means. today, no company (except those with cutting-edge tech like google and microsoft) operating in a specific industry can expect to be the sole beneficiary of demand for a particular product/ service. margins are getting thinner and this is all a good sign, we will tell you why. for a country like ours, all problems lie in income disparity that has only exacerbated despite of political promises to curb it. with those who earn handsome money and are willing and actually spending large sums on imported goods like electronics and garments, our trade balance has suffered. this ‘handsome money’ that they make can be attributed to the irrationality of their employers. companies, both private and public, have not prudently considered changing market conditions and are thus unable to rein in rising operating expenses, especially those incurred on salaries. take airtel for example. post jio’s

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why we must act fast on cannabis and amend the ndps act

medicinal benefits of cannabis are still unknown to the wider audience. however, in recent past, countries in the west, including usa and uk, have liberalized their stance on cannabis in the backdrop of emerging knowledge on extraordinary health benefits that cannabis is capable to deliver. medical conditions such as chronic pain, epilepsy, side-effects from cancer treatment and muscle spasticity reportedly find cure in cannabis. the cannabidiol (cbd) contained in cannabis has exceptional medicinal uses and a drug named ‘epidiolex’ (for treatment of childhood epilepsy) containing cbd has recently been approved in the united states. it is notable that cbd is a molecule found in marijuana plant and it has just 0.1 percent of tetrahydrocannabinol (thc), an ingredient that is responsible for making people high once consumed. many drugs available in the market as cure for above cited medical conditions are either expensive or haven’t been efficacious enough. in india, prescribing cannabis-based drugs is illegal and research and development in this

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sbi, other psb have only abused their hegemonic position

the 2 percent wage hike proposed by indian banks’ association to psb employees is unacceptable to them, and they have their own set of reasons. just one question- are present pay structures of psb employees commensurate with their skills and duties they perform? when one compares the monthly pay of an sbi staffer with that of a private sector staffer with identical skillsets, say with an accountant at a private enterprise, the picture that bank staffers are already drawing exceedingly high salaries becomes clear. for decades, public sector banks misused and severely abused their dominant positions, which is owing to the general public viewing these banks as quasi-government, not just government-run banks. people feel safe when their savings lie with public sector banks and this compulsion of people to use the services of psb has been exploited to the core. sbi, for example, not only pays lucrative and unreasonable salaries to probationary officers and other staffers, but also takes care

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what future holds for flipkart

borrowing an idea from overseas and implementing it in one’s own country is the new success mantra for present-age entrepreneurs. had replicating a successful business model in another country been such easy and rewarding a task, the disparities between developed and underdeveloped nations would have gradually come to an end. it is obvious that uber, the ride-hailing company, would have employed many market experts while deciding on foraying into other territories beyond us and europe. the outcome, however, is an evidence that their analysis was greatly misplaced with respect to gauging opportunities. uber has called it a day in many asian countries; in india, it is competing with ola and on the back of its deep pockets is making good inroads, but profit is still elusive. most indian startups fail to take note of a simple fact that the market here is incomparable to that in developed countries. you may be able to acquire customers by offering lucrative discounts and

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why corporates need to rationalise costs

economies across the world have slowed down, those posting good numbers of gdp growth rate aren’t faring well on equitable distribution of national income. then is the issue of rising number of loan defaulters. so what happened suddenly in the economic landscape that well-established companies, barring a few, are increasingly falling in the trap of squeezed profits? first globalisation (that in the indian scene resulted in public sector undertakings sharing their market base with more competitive enterprises, causing gradual decline in performances of psu firms) and now easy access to information (all thanks to the internet revolution) that is not allowing companies to reap unfair profits owing to new ventures in related business coming up rapidly through easily gained knowledge of a profitable market. google is perhaps the best company to work with as per studies, the internet giant has great workplaces, jaw-dropping salary packages for staffers and the perfect work-life balance. but google can afford this, at least for

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time is now for banking sector reforms

the bjp is in power in most indian states and its feat in the north-east is an evidence that voters are decisively backing the pro-development and reformist stance of the prime minister. so the perfect time to bring long-pending reforms in banking is now. when indira gandhi brought bank nationalisation in 1969, the move that was although opposed by many in her own party, went down well with the general populace, only because people viewed it as furthering their interests. even at that time, nationalising banks wasn’t the most preferred action to bring a change in how banks functioned; it was thought that banks were operating as agents of few corporates, while the needs of underprivileged classes were not being paid heed to. the then Indira-led government, prior to bringing the nationalisation ordinance, brought the scheme of social control over banks (which couldn’t last long), where a national credit council was established with finance minister as head and representatives of

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problem with government banks is that they are government banks

while everyone is counting the exact figure of non-performing assets, no one has taken time to see how messy, obsolete is the slip that is to be attached when depositing cash in a public sector bank. the modus operandi of government banks has led them to where they stand today; india’s so-called gem of banking sector, state bank of india, has posted a quarterly loss for the first time in 17 years. cut to solution. divestment is the only option to revive indian public sector banks, and yes this can come with challenges hence the need is to think of an appropriate method of divestment. when divestment is considered, we only think of making a public sector unit private by way of selling the stake of the government. this, however, can be a kneejerk decision. what is the alternative then? form a government trust and handover the stake currently held by government in public sector banks to this trust. yes,

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a simple way to create jobs in india

what do you expect would trigger organic job creation? increased economic activity? and for this increased economic activity do you want new enterprises to come up or the existing ones to expand? if this is the case, you may be at fault while pursuing the goal of job creation. our country, india, is a typical example of how population rise outpaces creation of new economic activities. you may come up with best measures – liberalisation or incentives to new enterprises – but the impact of these measures wouldn’t be enough to result into creation of as much employment opportunities as the country seeks. a simple and untapped way out to this problem is expanding the existing economic activities in such a manner that already existing enterprises see an increase in their appetite to absorb more unemployed youth. take an example. a public sector bank in india works from 10 am to 5 pm and remains shut on alternate saturdays and

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re-inventing higher education – rationalize the duration of programs

an undergraduate program in commerce takes at least 3 years, for engineering degree, one has to give at least 4 years and so on. whenever we talk of reforming education, the debate revolves around making education more skill-oriented and advanced in view of the prevailing industrial landscape. do we ever deliberate over re-thinking the duration of programs? no because we are now used to think that an undergrad degree needs a minimum 3 years commitment. but ask yourself. being a degree holder in some discipline you too have spent at least 3 years in learning the advanced aspects of some domain, say law, commerce or engineering. but what if the institution ran only a 1-year specialized program instead of 3 years, the successful completion of which would have secured you the degree? isn’t the argument sustainable? the rationale here is access to information has evolved in past few years. today, learners do not have to rely on classroom sessions for

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improving administration in india

most failures, whether more than 30 percent of population below the poverty line or rampant corruption in public services, can be attributed to poor administration. here we need to know that administration is not governance, which involves policy actions and legislative tasks, and it is the liability of civil servants, not politicians. thus, the salaried employees of the state, with fixed jobs and perks, are answerable for misadministration and implementation lapses. the constitution talks of all-india services, the personnel for which are hired through competitive exams conducted by upsc. an ias acts as the topmost functionary in the area under her jurisdiction, an ips heads the police department and so on. isn’t it then reasonable to hold these heads of different departments accountable for any lapse in services? indian bureaucracy is, time and again, regarded as red tape and the only task they are hired for – implementation of government policies and schemes and overall administration – still awaits their

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