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Economy and Business

Last year, after the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Ranking placed India at a lowly 130 out of 150 countries, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked bureaucrats to explain the reasons for the country’s poor performance and directed them to work on improving the ranking.

 

On August 18, Infosys Ltd CEO Vishal Sikka abruptly resigned. The board of Infosys released a letter blaming founder and former chairman NR Narayana Murthy for Sikka’s exit.

 

Flipkart’s announcement that SoftBank Vision Fund, a private equity fund backed by Japanese billionaire Masayoshi Son, would take a stake in the company has energised India’s e-commerce space.

 

The Reserve Bank of India’s recent decision to lower the repo rate was a move in the right direction, but I am of the view that it was not strong enough.

 

Now that the dust is beginning to settle from the political situation created by the disqualification of Nawaz Sharif, and work resumes after Independence Day celebrations, it is time to once again focus on the gaping deficits that plague the economy.

 

The order of the Securities and Exchange Board of India imposing trading restrictions on 331 companies suspected of being shell entities is an example of rash regulatory action.

 

India is now grappling with a balance sheet recession that has perhaps put the economy close to deflation.

 

In an interview to this newspaper, Niti Aayog’s outgoing vicechairman Arvind Panagariya has rightly pitched for lowering India’s peak Customs duty to 7% from 10%.

 

Ever since it got hauled over the coals for allegedly mishandling the post-demonetisation scenario, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) seems to have lost some of the halo it was previously endowed with.

 

Although autarky on Indian farms is a distant dream, as the 71st year of Independence dawns, penury-ridden farmers are still committing suicide by the thousands— a consequence of decades of short-sightedness, while economists and scientists are still equating food sufficiency to farmer sustainability.

 


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