Alcohol high & morality tests; Faith & angst; Economy’s weak PLI legs

Spread the love

Opinion Watch

Alcohol high & morality tests

Over 100 people have died in the hooch tragedy in Saran in Bihar so far, while there are claims that the toll is understated. At the same time the per capita alcohol consumption in India is steadily rising, from 4.3 litres in 2010 to 5.9 litres in 2017. There is a growing political push for prohibition, which currently is in practice in Gujarat and Bihar. While alcohol taxes contribute the most to the state coffers.

The Economic Times in its Editorial has underlined that the unrecorded consumption, which is not captured in the official data, in India is 50 per cent. The global average for this is 25 per cent. Taxes on alcohol account for 15 to 20 per cent of the revenue of the state governments, which ironically fund expenses on education and health.

Gujarat and Bihar are well known for ‘home delivery’ of liquor, as there allegedly exists a parallel world, which drives the illicit liquor trade. The revenue which should have come to the states are going to the unscrupulous elements. At the same time, prohibition creates space for incidents such as Saran hooch tragedies. The business daily advised the policy makers to bank on awareness to address its moral concerns of dissuading the people from consuming liquor.

Faith & angst

The Indian Express and The Pioneer have commented on the increasing trends of the states and the religious bodies intruding in the personal space of the people on the pretext of protecting the religious sentiments. People’s sentiments are like camphor, for they go aflame for reason or no reason,

The Indian Express has called the move of the Maharashtra government to track interfaith marriages bad. The state government had apparently wanted to track down the interfaith couple in the wake of the gruesome murder and dismembering of the body of Shraddha Walcker by her live-in partner Aftab Poonawalla. Following furor over the decision, the state government has said that it will gather information on such couple.

The Pioneer has also come down heavily against the Muslim Ulemas in Madhya Pradesh and the state Home Minister Narottam Mishra for their diktats against the Shahrukh Khan starrer film Pathaan. Ulemas are angry, because they believe that Islam has not been shown properly in the film. Mishra seems a film buff, for he has been issuing diktats to the Bollywood too often, and now he is angry because he did not like the costume of Dipika Padukone in the movie.

There is no denying the fact that the Ulemas and Mishra both give out as idlers who are keen to grab headlines with their parasitic anger against the film. If they can pay attention to their core jobs, their constituencies would be grateful to them.   

Economy’s weak PLI legs

The production linked schemes became the touchstones of the economic policy making of the Narendra Modi government after the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. They were hoped to provide momentum to ‘Make in India, Make for World’ campaign. But the Chinese imports, mostly consisting of the industrial intermediaries, which have spiked the trade in favour of China heavily, question the efficacy of the PLI schemes.

The New Indian Express has referred to former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan’s criticism of the PLI scheme. The daily stated that Rajan is a votary of the services led economic model. The Madurai-based daily has also quoted a Credit Suisse report, saying that there has only been a modest gains on account of the PLI schemes. True, the gains are not huge, but India being a country of large labour force must build a global manufacturing base, which can take a significant place in the supply chains at a time when China is collapsing, at least on the economic front.   

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *