Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Elephant in the Dragon's Shadow...When Dreams Break

Despite the rhetoric,the history and tweets on weibo etc,much cannot be said of the Prime Minister's visit to China.None of the major issues were discussed seriously,let alone being solved.No big policy announcements and only a few endgame deals by Indian businessmen allowed a few PR moments.

There is a sense of deja vu` in Goverment policies,over the last one year sometimes it feels as if the old UPA government is still at the centre,other than a huge PR exercise that is.

Almost 50 years after the Chinese army overran our eastern borders and led to a withering of Nehru's political and cultural heart,we still seem to be kowtowing to Chinese might. Arunachal,Sikkim,Ladakh are still disputed by them,yet we have recognised their suzerainty over Tibet.They issue stapled visas to Indians from these "disputed"zones while we give them e-visas?

The huge imbalance in trade tilted towards China shows no sign of changing.Should we be falling over backwards to invite their companies to trade freely in India knowing that chinese hackers have tried to get to Pentagon servers of all things!

One year of this government and the promise of "good days are here again" seems to have evaporated like wispy reminders of winter snows on a summer day.The tailwinds this government got was a heaven sent:-

  • Crude,despite recent rally,down 50% from highs
  • inflation down by 40%
  • global growth up 1%,Greece crisis limited
  • Fed yet to raise interest rates
  • IIP up from its worst phase
  • CAD under control
Yet we find:-
  • crude prices up 20% domestically
  • no dynamic reforms
  • struggling with MAT,retro tax on FIIs
  • Right wing Hindu organisations on 'quote a day' spree
  • extraneous issues like ban on beef taking prominence
How long can we run on unadulterated public relations?Will the public have to wait for the 4th year of this government to see meaningful reforms just before next elections?Crime stats have not changed.Infrastructure has not changed.

Corporates are not investing.Hiring is down.The Prime Minister says now Indians abroad can feel proud...!!Were we living in a country without taking pride in it despite the dents and all or has the Prime Minister made a freudian slip?

What is clear is that he is not a delegator.Where we were expecting a tightly run ship has become a one man show.There is no team.At this moment I am afraid that he does not have a Plan A,forget Plan B or C...

When dreams break,it has the potential for social conflict which India has a fair share of anyways-Maoists,Naga insurgency,Kashmiri unhappiness.

Its too early to write an epilogue but a reduction in corruption scams should not be the benchmark to judge performance of a man and his team that came into power with such positivity.

My blogpost is not an accusation but a call to action for people who first showed us that we could reach for the stars and now they hide behind convoluted jargon.