Article (November-2017)


A cheerful diwali: everyone dream

Dr. Vinayshil Gautam

Designation : -   Internationally Acclaimed Management Expert. Chairman, DK International Foundation

Organization : -  


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There is something about Indian business which is short of a universal feeling of enthusiasm. There a feeling of tentativeness in many areas. This may be natural when the country is trying to change track in so many different areas, simultaneously.

Some of the sectors seem to be moving well. Amongst them would figure external affairs, defence, tribal affairs and the likes. Some are clearly showing a positive trajectory say transportation and infrastructure. There are others which seem in a state of semi confusion typically: education, commerce, and railways. This is also understandable given the span of governance.

What is worrying is the rising anxiety level of even the honest man who has always led a straight life and wants to live straight. A prime cause of this trigger on anxiety is randomness of some queries in matters relating to financial transactions or economic operations. Every mis-construed query like say a transaction which had the phone number of the Director of an education institution ending up as a personal query, becomes a story. It gets large audiences and anxiety has a multiplier effect- slowing down even honest transactions. There are ways of controlling it and mitigating it. It can be done by establishing  by a genuinely supportive' helpline'. The objective of this helpline should be to clarify queries on probing which seem incomprehensible to the person under probe.

Unless answers to these experiences can be found, the corrosion of good faith in the system can be unpleasantly large.

The kind of persistence and enthusiasm with which SMS messages are being generated on Aadhar card for banking accounts, telephone numbers and whatever else are no doubt well intentioned. Perhaps somebody should check-out, if there is an overreach. This is for the system to design. Now Aadhar card is threatened for use for entry into airport terminal buildings. Another well intentioned effort! However, wishes as everyone knows, are not horses. It is reported that characteristically, with the diligence which many of our compatriots have, there are some in possession of more than one Aadhar card, co-ordinate.

No system can work unless people have good faith and believe in the efficacy of the system.

In an environment which is rife with stories on false affidavits, one is not quite sure how much of punitive action had followed on affidavits which were established to be false. Unless this is done, the governance system is faced with a real threat to its credibility. The smarter ones not only seem to survive but flourish. The more compliant ones are spending time meeting formalities, producing evidence and spending useful energies in plugging the doubts created by those who could and did get away.

This is not a situation which anyone would want. However this is the situation which many actions because of moth eaten implementation systems are generating.

The media itself has its problems to cope up with and this cannot be the place of sorting out all problems.

The bald truth is the objective of restoring enthusiasm for economic growth. This cannot be a matter for public debate.

The directions are right. We need to plug the gaps which exist. Illustratively, some letters of commendation to honest tax payers who have paid their taxes dutifully for decades has been a welcome step. However, the taxpaying percentage of this country, itself, is small compared to the massive numbers which populate it. Laws and regulations, if needed, must be amended to reduce the percentage of people exempt from taxation.

On top of this all, when the likes of zealous environmentalists step in and get sudden and erratic support from unexpected quarters the 'aam aadmi', whoever that may refer to, can only feel that there is little to feel cheerful about a Diwali which had many ingredients of lacklustre.

The time has come for the powers that be, to take a sagacious, states manly and relative focused view of the life on an Indian who tries honestly and sincerely to make both the ends meet. An Indian with no connects, no priority treatment, working hard to keep the family together, happy and fanning faith in a robust future-- which his own early years did not experience-is entitled to more support. There can be no other template of a growth story. Business, as an activity, is one component of this larger canvas.