Ad Here  
July
August
September
October
November
December
 
 
Noble nonagenarians... Tribute – M V Murugappan Mu Sigma – is no more Delhi is distant Excel Generators provide the vital back-up Recognition to role of NBFCs.... L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership When small is no larger beautiful.. CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. Modi and the lady PC’s preference for professionals The rise and fall of Annamalai University Return to king coal for urea... Quality education through the PPP mode CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? Modi storms Silicon Valley to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines Plummeting profits of PSBs Come elections, come advertisements... Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Making ‘my Amaravati’... EVM is tamper-proof Wanted: a second airport for Chennai Secularism and anti-Hinduism Strengthen the base... Kulandai was a giant Parliament in paralysis... When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu When nations steal growth from one another… Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai Gay abandon in pricing F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing Fortune for Indian Airlines A think tank for Chennai Maximising the micro pricing … TGS- The king storyteller A yen for wastage… WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Cutting the nose to spite the face Fortune 500 review Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Telangana in top gear… GM Technology at last! Road development slows down The brown list of Venkitaramanan Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel This scant respect for Law Build close rapport with business leaders The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more The balancing act Delhi is distant… Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health …and of a popular trade leader Shanti and Sadhana through Music Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi Why land prices zoom in TN? Robber barons everywhere Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... Intellectual of rare qualities No Maha Koottani in TN... Kinetic Karnataka More Shakti to resource mobilisation... When Ratan Tata visited SRM Polls and promises IPL type auction for VCs? Paytm karo... The Swadeshi Trump Revving up the manufacturing sector How Air-India loses customs... Tribute – UCAL Selvan… A professional at the helm of IRDA... Breaththrough in malaria control Towards speedy justice Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna CII projects higher growth… Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Which side are you, Montek? All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya Computation of GDP – conundrums continue Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Roaring Ro-Ro facility Alexa – Talking Wikipedia Rahman at CIC Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform Multi-faceted Venkat Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways TIAM turns a full cycle Readers' Mail Revive development banks... Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Tatas moving out of urea production... Airlines in India: cost and space TELANGANA at last…BUT The power-full Hindujas PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Wise Presidents Don’t seem to feel the pulse… A proud Madrasi An enemy’s enemy is a friend Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked SoA @ 80 Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V Another Indian music maestro at the UN Banning booze... Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Welcome focus on core competence Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated Contrarian cousins B H Kothari - a tribute For whom the bell tolls? The Jan Dhan bonanza Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel GNS - 100: our first subscriber Auto components surge… Shipping woes of Chennai companies London, London Narayan Solar, solar everywhere … Quality silica from Neyveli Muffled voices for merit… Pharma – overdose of copying Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS Delhi returns to BJP The star of Spencers is no more Nuclear power at the nucleus Shale gas and its shallow future Should we change the official year? He saved millions from starvation... New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… Sweet news for TN sugar mills Adharma of opposition politics Where a state respects its litterateurs… Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Editor's Notes The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Haul over the coal Valli, they are more marginalised IAS invades NDDB... Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! Russi Mody – a tribute Tribute Gas is the way forward Silver Years of Madras Musings L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Make standards certification mandatory... More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Solar thermal shines… Engineering seats go abegging Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Poor quality of university VCs Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ Tatas moving out of urea production... A friendly business group EEC at the National Media Centre The rise and rise of KCP No engine for this car Things happen by accident and not by design... Five star activism stalls development activity Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra The few handicaps... Medical costs hit the roof... Boy, can you beat these? Kudos to NDTV... Waning interest in public discussions… A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… West Bengal: mindless malignancy The sea- saw battle continues... A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… The Gulf aviation boom S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science China invests in India Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities More heat than light Fuel for thought The why of tax incentives An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... Sweeter prospects for sugar Tough task taking states together More tributes to GR He continues the focus on social amelioration An inexplicable neglect Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Building loyalty through the stomach Small units prefers to remain small... Align crops to agro climate endowments… Music happens A welcome initiative by the judiciary The nuclear option Where is Rajaji? Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Mersal magnified Put expensive assets created to use... Moily’s bold thrust Welcome GST A more liberated TN… Delhi Chalo... IPL - no surprise this scam Editor's Says Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Convulsions in The Hindu Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan Of course, Gujarat is vibrant TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector For whom the MIDS bell tolls? When online building permits work…. Funding the un-funded ONGC at KG Basin S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Protest masters... Demise of a media baron... A glass full of corruption When the President was rendered homeless… Why this malaise in medical education? Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Increasing non co-operation of state leaders Vibrant Gujarat Cement prices continue to rise… There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Sri Lanka votes for change Streamlining mandatory third party cover Preserving for the future Tax agriculture TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... Discoms deserve better…
 
Delhi is distant…

The Union Information & Broadcasting Ministry has several divisions that are supposed to take care of the interests of the media:  the Press Information Bureau to disseminate information on government’s plans; the Press Registrar for facilitating publications with registration, imports of machinery, newsprint, etc., the DAVP for a release of government’s advertisements... There is also the mandate to assist small newspapers to help them meet the unequal competition from the bigger ones.

 These divisions have grown into behemoths with a large retinue of officials spread across the country. Not long ago there used to be one principal information officer with the responsibility as the spokesperson for the Prime Minister with deputies assisting different departments. While we had one PIO for years, today we have a PIO cum Director General, assisted by a dozen Additional Directors General and more deputy and assistant DGs.  And there are officers at the regional/state level with little communication with the media for which they are supposed to exist. Regional offices used to take care of press releases, press tours, organising press conferences for ministers…

Delhi also used to organise several important conferences for editors and media persons and visits to projects. Today, the salaries and perks of staff demand so much that these services to media - persons suffer severe cuts! The Economic Editors’ Conference was one such launched by the then Prime Minister in 1966. The annual conference used to provide the opportunity for economic editors to interact with ministers and senior civil servants handling economic portfolios. Spread over three days it used to provide excellent background material for the working of the different departments. It also provided for interactions and the opportunity to apprise policymakers of the impact of economic policies, particularly fiscal, on the different regions from which the editors hailed.

I have had the opportunity to participate in EEC from 1973 for over 40 years. For several years, I used to be the sole representative from the South attending the conference. I presented specific issues concerning the southern states and several of these have been effective. eg. I submitted in 1973 on the Neyveli Lignite Corporation (NLC) requiring urgently additional mining machinery to reach its original target of mining 6.5 MT of lignite. Till then NLC could mine less than 3 MT p.a  plunging it to continuous losses. Mohan Kumarmangalam as the then Steel and Mines Minister, appreciated this and promised attention. Though he died soon after, the steps he initiated resulted in a handsome expansion of mining capacity. After completion of this in 1977, NLC, which was described by Finance Secretary Yardi in the 1973 EEC as a drag on the public sector, turned out to be among the most profitable of PSUs since!

The EEC has been particularly useful to editors from outside Delhi to meet and interact with policymakers. Particularly in the context of the very few policymakers from Delhi, especially the Finance Minister and his senior cabinet colleagues visiting state capitals and with such visits being crowded, regional editors have little access to policy makers.

Sadly, the NDA government seems to be less inclined to hold such interactive sessions. Dr Manmohan Singh, P Chidambaram and Yashwant Sinha, who have had long tenures as finance ministers, allotted liberal time for the EEC. Jaswant Singh as finance minister skipped this. Arun Jaitley in NDA II would not provide time for this through 2014 and 2015. Maybe his lack of a finance background can be some reason for this. Neither his deputy Jayant Sinha nor officials of the finance ministry are often seen in Chennai or other state capitals.

It is, even more difficult to get any response from the Press Registrar or the DAVP for letters sent. Surely, the numbers and the stature of such divisions have expanded.

K P Geethakrishnan as Chairman of the Expenditure Reforms Commission delved deep into the working of the different departments. He pointed to the little  work done by many of these and recommended closure of quite a few. Arun Jaitley as then Minister of I&B seemed to have been impressed with the recommendation and was about to act. But with his shifting from I&B, a more kindly

Sushma Swaraj who succeeded him as the I&B Minister dropped the idea. Jaitley is I&B Minister again, assisted by another live wire minister of state. But they seem to be overwhelmed by the politics of administration and not much concerned with vital issues of administration as an essential tool for good governance.

Author :
Reported On :
Sector :
Shoulder :
RELATED NEWS
ABOUT IE
IE, the business magazine from south was launched in 1968 and pioneered business journalism in south. Through the 45 years IE has been focusing on well-presented and well-researched articles. When giants in the industry stumbled to keep pace with the digital revolution, IE stayed affixed embracing technology.
Read more
 
PRIVACY POLICY
Economist Communications Ltd is committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected.
Read more
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
You agree that your use of this Website and the purchase of the magazine will be governed by these terms and conditions.
Read more
 
CONTACT US
S-15, Industrial Estate,
Guindy,
Chennai - 600 032.
PHONE: +91 44 22501236
EMAIL: indecom1968@gmail.com