|Friday, March 17, 2000,
lob another stink bomb
Hawk turns dove
US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright enjoys the reputation of having violated just about every rule framed by an equally famous American on "How to Win Friends and Influence People". In her book influencing people through aggressive posturing is the better option for promoting the USA's global interests than wasting time on polite diplomacy for winning friends. She does not have to cultivate the art of being aggressive. It comes naturally to her. That is the reason why the media was taken by surprise when she chose to shed her hawkish image while addressing the Asia Society chapter in Washington on Tuesday. It is not that she did not allow aggressive language to enter the discourse on the bilateral relations of the USA with Pakistan and India. But the aggression was reserved primarily for enunciating American concerns vis-a-vis Pakistan's role in the region. Obviously much of what Ms Albright said was meant to improve the climate for President Bill Clinton's highly hyped India-centric visit to the region. Instead of jumping with joy over what she said about the sanctity of the LoC in Kashmir a more balanced approach would be to understand the reason why she is sweet-talking to India. The US Administration evidently believes that the time is yet not ripe for direct and exclusive inter-action with India on issues of mutual interests. That is why a flying visit to Bangladesh and a stop-over in Pakistan have been included in Mr Clinton's tour programme. The dash to the Bangla neighbour is acceptable, but the announcement that the holder of the most powerful political office in the world would also kiss Pakistani soil during his visit to the region has made India go into a deep sulk.
Ms Albright's statement
on the LoC is meant to make sullen-faced Indian leaders
and diplomats smile again and sing "Jai
Clinton" when he lands. Not surprisingly, her
statement on Kashmir has received a cautious welcome in
political and diplomatic circles in the country. Mr
Clinton will deserve a full-throated "jai" if,
during the few hours he will spend in Islamabad, he is
able to convince General Pervez Musharraf to honour the
commitment regarding the LoC mentioned in the Simla
Agreement. However, as far as sweet-talking is concerned
Ms Albright is not the only person who is trying to
"do the needful" for making Mr Clinton's visit
a diplomatic success. There was more cheerful news for
India in the advice given to President Clinton by a
Washington-based Independent Task Force. It warned the US
President not to press India too hard on the nuclear
issue. Showing far deeper appreciation of the concerns
which determine India's "neighbourhood" policy
than the State Department, the Task Force stated that
"it is essential to resist the temptation to place
ambitious nuclear weapons-related goals at the centre of
US aims". It rightly concluded that any attempt to
make India destroy its nuclear arsenal will fail.
Pakistan is the source of much irritation, but the more
serious threat to India's security comes from China.
"The inclination of many Indians to associate
nuclear weapons with great power status" too is a
factor which cannot be ignored. It would be foolhardy for
the USA to force India to accept its line on global
disarmament without first defanging Pakistan, by making
it pay dearly for promoting cross-border terrorism, and
convincing China to honestly revive the spirit of
Panchsheel. It may not be wrong to say that the Task
Force has argued India's case and articulated its
apprehensions more coherently than even the top guns in
the Ministry of External Affairs.
MPs lob another stink bomb
MOUNTING bad debts of
public sector banks and the Union Finance Ministrys
reluctance to crack the whip are two favourite charges of
the Opposition parties. In other months a demand for a
discussion will provoke yawns and the interest of even
the loudest critic will evaporate sooner than the time it
took for the money to vanish into a bottomless pit. But
this week was different. Parliament was discussing the
budget and the subsidy reduction is gathering opposition.
The old issue stands out in the new context and it is
embarrassing for the bigger partner in the ruling
alliance. The contrast is crushing. On the one side, the
government says it has to make ration card grains costly
to save the economy from collapsing. On the other, it
pleads helplessness in recovering the huge cash, more
than Rs 61,000 crore at present. It is flawed philosophy
and add to this the tilt in fine print. The one-rate
reform of the excise duty will mean cheaper computers and
other comfort toys. And the same reform has made middle
class necessities like vanishing cream, tooth brushes and
biscuits dearer. The Minister is right when he says that
there is no link between the budget features like soaring
fiscal deficit, unbridled government borrowing, and
ballooning interest payment and the outstanding bank
loans. Also, rules do not permit him to squeeze the money
out of industrialists. Further, the banks are autonomous
in their day-to-day working and have to follow RBI rules
on this issue and not the government diktat. The central
bank is busy compiling details of what everyone calls
non-performing assets than in forcing the defaulters to
comply with the loan agreement. The only instrument with
the banking system is the Debt Recovery Tribunal and it
is a toothless body. So bad debts keep mounting. Last
year the banks managed to get back over Rs 4000 crore but
at the end, the total shot up by another Rs 10,000 crore
to nearly Rs 61,000 crore. The Opposition, particularly
the Left, knows that the NPA is at best a pinprick and
the BJP allies are unlikely to own up the issue and
demand redressal. But it has voter appeal and will occupy
a pride of place in the all-in pro-poor crusade as is the
criticism of the subsidy cut. And it wants to keep alive
the problem by occasionally raising it and hopes that the
NDA partners will find it uncomfortable to maintain
silence and may hesitantly enter the debate. But one
thing is certain. The identity of the big defaulters will
be out soon. The CPI did publish a partial list but it
contained the names of small scale units and the stuff
ladled out was thus unexciting. Incidentally, that is the
figure the Minister reeled off 2,21,000 sick units
owed Rs 3856 crores and 2454 big units account for nearly
Rs 12,000 crore. The RBI prohibits banks from releasing
the names of those with outstanding loans. But the furore
in the wake of CIIs recommendation to close down
three ailing banks has destroyed the sanctity and its
silence on the CPI action has opened the door for further
expose. This is the second prod which could energise the
BJP allies. The increasing NPA is a major threat to the
viability of banking itself and it shows the bad
judgement of senior managers about the potential risk in
advancing loans and also the failure to keep an eye on
the utilisation of the borrowed funds. Like the staffing
pattern, the NPA too shows Indian banks are bloated.
Roadblocks in Indo-US ties
The visit of US President Bill Clinton has evoked unprecedented interest in this country. This is despite the fact that Indias relations with the USA have not moved on expected lines. There have been many ups and downs in the bilateral ties. Areas of misunderstanding and friction have also been many and varied. This has led to distrust of each others subcontinental, regional and global interests and goals.
Policy-makers in New Delhi have often feltand rightly sothat Washington hardly cares for Indian susceptibilities and sensitivities. Americas postures on Kashmir, its overall stance on Indo-Pakistan relations and the reluctance by Washington to accept India as a nuclear-cum-missile power have invariably made South Block, look suspiciously at US moves and intentions.
The super powers patronising attitude towards Islamabad, its open hobnobbing with the present and past military dictators and the Tower of Pisa-like tilt have created a lot of bad blood between the two democracies. The China factor has only added to Indias exasperation.
The Clinton administration ought to see democratic India vis-a-vis communist China and not solely in relation to Pakistan in Asia. It will be worthwhile for American policy-makers to take note of the observations by a Washington-based independent task force. It opines: It is essential to resist the temptation to place ambitious, nuclear weapons-related goals at the centre of US aims. Any attempt to persuade India to eliminate its nuclear arsenal will fail (and poison the atmosphere of constructive discussion of other issues) given the Indian concerns of both China and Pakistan and the inclination of many Indians to associate nuclear weapons with great power states.
India legitimately deserves this status. What is disquieting is that US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has already fouled the atmosphere on the eve of President Clintons visit by her sharp comments on Indias nuclear and missile programme.
True, of late, American responses towards this country have shown certain heartening changes. Still, the suspicion about the genuineness of American attitude lingers on. It is no secret that Washington has been both superficial and ad hoc in dealing with New Delhi. There has been no consistency in the US approach towards India.
The trouble with the USA is that it constantly sees Pakistan as its client state, probably with an eye on its own larger geo-political and economic interests in Central Asia and Afghanistan. It is only after confronting the ugly face of the Taliban and of Islamic fundamentalism that Washington felt alarmed. Perhaps, this is what has prompted Americas somewhat soft attitude towards India.
What has been happening in Afghanistan in recent years is being repeated, howsoever selectively, in Pakistan as well. I have often talked about the increasing Talibanisation of Pakistan, thanks to the ISIs operations and dubious policies pursued by Islamabads unscrupulous rulers, General Musharraf included.
We have reasons to believe that Washington is deeply concerned about the growing nuisance of the Taliban as a terrorist arm of Islamic fundamentalism at the regional and global level.
It is also no secret that American policy-makers are obsessed with the Saudi billionaire Osama bin Laden who operates freely in Afghanistan and Pakistan under the patronage of General Musharraf.
In this complex setting in the subcontinent and beyond, what is not being realised by the Americans is that by their wrong policies and misplaced postures, they have virtually fostered conditions of acute instability in South Asia.
This negates the very process of pro-peace and business promotion moves initiated by Washington from time to time. How can they overlook the menace of militancy in Jammu and Kashmir and yet play an effective role in containing global terrorism promoted by the same Taliban-Pakistan axis? This is yet another example of ambivalence in the American policy in South Asia. Why cant Washington show greater transparency and credibility in the conduct of its foreign policy postures?
As it is, India has paid a heavy price for the misadventures of Pakistani rulers and the way they have encouraged the forces of terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism in the subcontinent.
The USA should have actually been Indias natural ally in fighting terrorism. This is one major area where the two countries can cooperate and collaborate actively and sensibly. But then Americas calculations and interests have got badly mixed up with its old pursuits and new goals. This has, more often than not, thrown up contradictory signals to the disadvantage of this country.
Washington needs to realise that the main casualty of its misplaced policies will be its economic interest in the region. Stability holds the key to economic revival. An economically vibrant India can not only bring about a radical improvement in the prospects of peace in the subcontinent but also become a catalyst in the development of South Asia. This can be to the tremendous advantage of Americas political and business interests.
What India is capable of achieving in technology and economic collaboration is no longer a secret. American policy-makers, including President Clinton, probably understand Indias potential as a new Asian tiger. There are positive signs of all-round economic growth. All that is required at this juncture from the USA is to evolve an honest approach to this countrys susceptibilities. Once this is done, Indo-American ties will get a boost, and its benefits will be reaped by Washington. Is this too much to expect?
Washington has its priorities and a global perspective. What is regrettable is that Washington has not given New Delhi the attention and care it deserves as an ancient civilisation with established credentials as a functioning democracy. No wonder, a commentator once called India and the USA as estranged democracies.
Perhaps, New Delhi is equally to blame for not pursuing its objectives in a mature manner. Changes everywhere in the globe should actually give us a chance to carry out corrections without damaging repercussions. But we have often allowed opportunistic short-term gains to hurt our larger interests.
There can, of course, be no cut-and-dried answers to Lenins classical question: What is to be done? All the same, alternative options have to be explored by shaping our perspective and vision about ourselves as an ancient civilisation to find a rightful place in the comity of nations.
It is also essential that Indian policy-makers make concerted efforts to enlarge the areas of understanding between the two countries both at the academic and political levels. In this context, those US Congressmen who are hostile to India need to be encouraged to visit this country to see for themselves that India is not the ogre that it is made out to be by certain vested interests in the USA.
Of course, a lot of goodwill is expected to be generated between the two countries as a result of President Clintons visit. He is the first US President to visit India after a gap of more than two decades. Things were different when President Jimmy Carter came to this country. The whole scenario is now surcharged with expectations.
The Indians who have settled down in different segments of American life and society have certainly helped in generating new areas of US interests in this part of the world. The process of liberalisation and globalisation and the overall dynamics of Indias economic resurgence have aroused considerable hopes among US entrepreneurs about the future of this country.
Close collaboration between India and the USA in hi-tech areas has increased considerably. There are further prospects of increased technical and economic cooperation between the two countries. As a matter of fact, the USA can give a big boost to Indo-American business ties if Washington shows better understanding of the agonising situation faced by New Delhi in Jammu and Kashmir because of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism there.
Terrorism knows no boundary. The threat it poses is global. It is high time the Americans stopped seeing this problem selectively and in isolation. The USA should actively support India to root out terrorism in the subcontinent even by smashing the training camps being run by Pakistanis just outside the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir.
Washington needs to realise that Indo-Pakistan relations cannot improve unless Islamabad in reality and forthwith discontinues the financial, material and military support it extends to different groups of terrorists and mercenaries. Will the US President be able to make the Pakistani dictator see reason? If not, will it be too much to expect from Mr Clinton to initiate firm thinking in Washington and respond to this country more positively and sensibly?
Those familiar with the complexities of American policy-making from the Pentagon and the State Department backed by a host of experts working at cross-purposes within the bylanes and subways of US interests are unlikely to have much hope on this count. However, a lot will depend on the reading of business prospects in India by the chief executives of American multinationals who are scheduled to be a part of President Clintons large delegation.
Be that as it may, Washington ought to see the subcontinental affairs in an entirely new perspective of stability, peace and economic development in the region whose major beneficiary will be the USA.
The problem with the
policy-makers in Washington is that they still carry the
Cold War mindset which should have no place in the
current thinking symbolised by President Clintons
new global perspectives for peace and development.
However, much will depend on the tenant in the White
House next year. For the present, everything is a matter
of goodwill here. And there is a fond hope that
Indo-American ties will see better days ahead.
Four hours in Pakistan
After painful debate and tortuous deliberations within the White House, President Clinton has, as expected, finally decided to stop over in Islamabad for four hours on his way back home from a five-day visit to India. The visit to Pakistan might well appear to be an afterthought, but the delayed decision was more the end result of the pushes and pulls by those vehemently arguing for and against such a presidential gesture at this juncture.
Several members of Congress as well as President Clintons security officials had given powerful arguments why he should not visit Pakistan. They had said it. It would appear to legitimise a military regime that took power by coup; it would make light of U.S. concerns over international terrorism, the presence of terrorist groups in Pakistan, and the reported encouragement by the ruling junta of militant jihadist groups indulging in intensified cross-border raids into India.
The opposing arguments were that a presidential shunning of Pakistan would be taken in that country (and around the world) as an unprecedented snub and would strengthen anti-U.S. fundamentalist militants even as it weakened democratic forces. President Clinton clearly did not want to be the one who lost Pakistan. His political compulsions are understandable.
All that is not to say that the persuasions of those who were against the visit did not have an impact. The Islamabad stopover is something with which the Oval Office is plainly uncomfortable. No wonder the official announcement of the addition to the itinerary almost sounded apologetically explanatory. Officials, both at the White House and at the State Department, went to great lengths to declare that the presidential visit was not an endorsement of the military regime but just a pragmatic attempt to engage at the highest level with the regime in charge, and to inform them of U.S. concerns about democracy, terrorism and nonproliferation. Unfortunately, that was not the way it was seen in the corridors of power in Islamabad.
The ruling elite in Islamabad, from Gen Pervez Musharraf downwards, gleefully claimed that the Clinton visit would impart legitimacy to the army take-over. They even went to the extent of declaring that the visit was indicative of US support for the Pakistani view on Kashmir.
But it was the Pakistani establishment here in Washington that truly went ballistic, with chest-thumping boasts that the Clinton visit was a glowing triumph for Pakistans lobbying efforts, and a mortifying defeat for Indias bid to isolate Islamabad. In fact, Pakistani Ambassador Maleeha Lodhi gave the go-by to diplomatic prudence and advised President Clinton that he could make his visit truly historic by facilitating a just and durable settlement of the Kashmir dispute based on the wishes of the Kashmiri people. Ambassador Lodhi chose to ignore the fact that the White House had made it repeatedly clear that President Clinton had no intention of getting involved in the Kashmir dispute.
It must be pointed out that the Clinton Administration is to blame for the current state of affairs. When General Musharraf took over power last year, the official US reaction was initially confined to a bunch of platitudes. Since there was no strong and sustained protest by the US Administration of the militarys power grab, the charge by deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif of tacit US support for the coup has gathered momentum and credibility.
Such sentiments are reinforced by thoughtless comments by some US officials. State Department spokesman James Rubin was guilty of one such faux pas while defending the Clinton visit to Islamabad. When Rubin maintained that President Clinton had successfully defused the Kargil situation by persuading Mr Nawaz Sharif to back down, a newsman pointed to reports that it was Mr Nawaz Sharifs surrender that had triggered the military coup.
Stung to the quick, Mr Rubin denied that Kargil had anything to do with the coup, and appeared to justify the coup on the basis of Mr Nawaz Sharifs own dictatorial form of governance. We had major problems with former Prime Minister Sharifs approach to democratic issues, Mr Rubin said. He was shutting down newspapers, he was denying the ability of parties to operate.... it is not our view that the reason the coup happened is because of him backing down. The coup happened as an accretion of a number of steps.
It almost sounded as if Mr Nawaz Sharif had asked for it. General Musharraf must be quite happy to hear such views. And he is more than likely to ensure that the people of Pakistan also become aware of such an official US endorsement.
Islamabad has got its propaganda victory from the Clinton visit. What is President Clinton likely to achieve during his four hours in Islamabad? Precious little, to go by the way things are shaping up. It is not that President Clinton does not know that he cannot have General Musharrafs Pakistan as an ally and simultaneously espouse democracy and the eradication of terrorism from the face of earth. President Clinton also knows that Pakistan has already been fully baptised in fundamentalism by the lunatic fringe. General Musharraf and his confidants cannot reverse that trend: They are riding a tiger and cannot dismount without being devoured.
The main US goals with regard to Pakistan are: a rapid return to democracy; a clampdown on fundamentalist groups; a ban on terrorist organisations such as Harkat-ul-Mujahideen which has been declared an international terrorist organisation by the US State Department and which is alleged to be involved in the Christmas-eve hijacking of the Indian Airlines airliner; end of Pakistani support to cross-border raids into India; a curb on nuclear and missile proliferation activities; and last but not least, Islamabads help to flush Saudi millionaire-terrorist Osama bin Laden out of his sanctuary in Afghanistan and to bring him to justice as he is considered the fountainhead of international terrorism.
In a Newsweek interview on March 12, General Musharraf said he would bring back democracy but only after corruption had been tackled and the economic situation improved. The military regimes record of the past few months would make that a never-never plan. A clampdown on fundamentalist groups is more than General Musharraf can manage, given the extent of fundamentalist contagion within the armys ranks, and the fact that two of his senior fellow coup leaders are sympathetic to fundamentalist groups.
Despite the US terrorist tag, General Musharraf averred that the Harkat-ul-Mujahideen was not a terrorist organisation. There can be no question of the General discouraging intrusions into India, considering that he has publicly stated his support for the jihad in Kashmir. Then again, given Pakistani dependence on nuclear and missile materials and technology from China and North Korea, General Musharraf cannot be too enthusiastic about promoting nonproliferation.
General Musharraf has somehow mollified Washington by promising to visit Kandahar to talk to the Taliban. But in the Newsweek interview, he claimed that the Taliban had their own reasons for providing sanctuary to Bin Laden, and there was little he could do about it. He would, however, discuss with the Taliban the question of terrorist training camps. Even if he is sincere, there is no reason why the Taliban should be persuaded by him since they know that the General is backing his own training camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
President Clinton is thus likely to return from Islamabad with nothing substantial to show for his four-hour effort. Nonetheless, their ensuing statements will be as grandiloquent as they can make it. That, after all, is part of the art of diplomacy.
Allow Indian MNCs to grow
THERE is an explosion of job opportunities, both at home and abroad. Thanks to the infotech revolution, India must prepare itself to take advantage of it.
India has the brains. What it lacks is the organising skills. That is why the Union Government must step in: it must provide the back-up.
Happily, the infotech industry is growing fast. In another 10 years, it will be a Rs 100-billion industry 20 times its present size.
The BJP Government has done well in setting up the Ministry of Information Technology. It has also pledged to promote a number of world-class institutions. But progress is tardy. Internet penetration is rather slow. And only 10 companies have been established for software export.
From data to information and information to knowledge, it is a long way. Each stage is important. India has gone through all these stages earlier, for example, in the development of Ayurveda.
Today the progress to knowledge takes a slightly different route. Thus, one gathers data on rainfall from different parts of India. It is tabulated to find the average rainfall. This is information. And then, one infers from this that the country will have a good crop or that agro prices will remain steady. This is knowledge.
Take for example, the computer-aided maintenance system (CAMS) of General Motors. It is the combined expertise of all the mechanics of the system. It teaches an apprentice mechanic to diagnose and repair cars. Today, it is so sophisticated that even expert mechanics can profit from it. And they can become specialists without having to go through thousands of pages in manuals on repair.
The world is moving to knowledge-based societies. Naturally, knowledge is built into the products. A refrigerator which knows when to defrost, an air-conditioner which knows when to switch off these have knowledge built into them. Similarly, a ski jacket which turns warm when it senses cold and a cloud Gel (a kind of glass used for windows) which can transmit more warmth in winter and bounce back heat into the atmosphere during summer these are new products of knowledge based society.
The infotech revolution is changing the face of the earth. India has a huge stake in it. In fact, it is tailor-made for the country.
Eighty-seven per cent of the worlds data is in the English language. India has the third largest English-speaking population about 50 million. It also has special aptitude and abilities in the field. No wonder, Indians are wanted all over the world. They no more have to pick up jobs rejected by whites. Today giant US companies book IIT boys in advance!
Remote processing is a new field, thanks to technological advance. Satellite, Internet and high speed telephones have made this possible. One can sit at home and work for, say, an American client. All that one needs is a graduate degree, a reasonable command over English, ability to make out different accents and typing skills. and if the work is in the medical field, one must be familiar with medical terms.
Prof Michael Detrouzos, Director of MITs Laboratory for Computer Sciences, was even more categorical. He thinks that India can earn as much as a trillion dollars yearly by selling information. India can easily take up medical transcription, health diagnosis, education, examining insurance claims, etc.
Prof Detrouzos thinks that there is growing opportunity of outsourcing office work (accounting, legal work, finance, marketing, claims, etc) to developing countries. Office work is estimated at $ 3 trillion yearly.
Today, medical transcription is a hot new profession. All that one has to do is to type out the patients reports dictated by US doctors, as well as their advice on treatment. The information is transmitted to a medical transcript company in India, which arranges the transcription.
This is at present a $ 20-billion industry in the USA and is growing at 20 per cent yearly. The USA is short of trained hands, although they are paid $ 30,000 to 40,000 yearly.
India has a growing band of trained hands in Chennai and Mumbai. And it has a special advantage: a 12-hour time zone difference with the USA. This is enough time to prepare the transcript and transmit it back. In India one can start from Rs 5000 to Rs 7000 per month and go on to Rs 15,000 in a years time. Of course, this is cheap, but it is a part-time job.
Already, India is earning Rs 1.5 billion. All that an MT Co needs to set up shop in Rs 2.5 to Rs 5 million.
Very soon, further sophistication is expected. For example, voice recognition, automation, customisation, collaboration across distances and e-commerce.
Throughout the West, the ageing population is on the rise. They are of interest to both tourist and health care organisations. In the USA health care accounts for 14 per cent of the GDP. It is one of the fastest growing services, but it is not enough.
Studies show that half the Americans above 65 years of age need some form of nursing. One estimate has it that OECD countries alone can generate jobs of over 50 million to nurse the disabled among the elderly.
Here is opportunity for both doctors and nurses. But it has to be organised. If not, the need will be filled by illegal immigration. Permanent immigration is not in favour. It can be avoided by giving short-term contracts. The initiative should come from medical insurance companies and manpower importing firms. Much of the agonies could thus be avoided.
India can also set up nursing homes in the salubrious regions of the country and attract foreign customers. Pilot projects could start with the NRIs.
India must take robotics seriously, for it is what will dominate the future. Robotics uses artificial intelligence. India has capabilities in this field. What is more, it has great cost advantage. Robotics developed at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre cost half to one-third of the cost of imported systems.
India must promote the study and application of robotics. This can open up job opportunities abroad.
In the final analysis, India must on its own create jobs abroad for its people. This is possible only if more Indian MNCs are allowed to grow. Of the 500 giant companies in the world, only one is an Indian. The last two decades saw a phenomenal growth of MNCs as much as 650 per cent. But there was none from India. Indias low standing is reflected in the fact that the largest Indian company, Reliance, is only a third of the size of the smallest MNC of the 500. For this state of affairs, we can only blame ourselves. Or, the Congress, which ruled the country for 45 years.
The BJP Government is in favour of promoting Indian MNCs. But they dont grow without steady support. If Japan has today some of the largest MNCs, it is because of the Japanese Governments total support.
According to David Corten, a former official of the World Bank, the world is now ruled by a global financial casino staffed by faceless bankers and hedge-fund speculators who operate the world of global finance. And yet our bank employees have not allowed our banks to grow or merge!
If India is to move with
the times, we must allow the winds of change to blow
freely. A knowledge society will move faster than
anything that we have known. But man move slowly. More so
in Asia. Still more in India. The Japanese are an
exception. They have the Kaisen tradition (continuous
improvement). India must imbibe this culture from Japan.
BOMBAY has set an admirable example to the rest of India by losing no time in expressing its considered opinion regarding the Muddiman Committees report. In the first place, a considerable number of popular leaders, including two of the ministers, have in the course of an interview with the Associated Press definitely condemned the majority report and definitely supported the recommendations of the minority report.
Secondly, the Legislative Council has unanimously adopted a resolution, at the instance of Mr Jayakar, calling attention to the highly unsatisfactory nature of the recommendations of the majority.
Thirdly, the Local Government itself not only put no obstacle in the way of this vitally important matter being considered by the Council but took no part in the discussion that took place on the subject on the ground that its views were already before the public in the appendices to the report.
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