Celebrating economy; ‘Saving’ Ladakh; Pakistan Singed

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Opinion Watch 

Celebrating economy

In 2018, the narrative was that a strong foundation has been laid for the economy to take off. In 2023, the theme is that painstaking efforts have been made to rescue the economy from external shocks. The economy stays on the runway. The people are celebrating 6-6.5 per cent GDP growth. This should explain why the youth with Masters’ degree work as security guards.

The Economic Times in an Editorial has sought to make a sense of the Economic Survey, which is less of the work of an economist and more of a spokesperson. The ET noted that the economy has recovered to clock 6.5 per cent GDP growth in 2023-24. The daily counted Survey noting that vaccination put labour force back to work; public expenditure spurred high income and employment; structural reforms since 2014 will deliver 6.5 per cent medium term growth. The daily also listed the reforms suggested by the Survey to achieve 7-8 per cent GDP growth – greater deregulation, market liberalization, overhaul of energy pricing and skill development. The daily counts positive outcomes such as higher school enrolment.

The ET is dishonest in its analysis, for the learning outcome in schools is back to the level of 2018, as stated by the recently released report. The arson and violence during Agniveer scheme and the sights whenever clerical exams are held affirm that the youth in the country is bearing brunt of a jobless growth. Celebrating 6-6.5 per cent GDP growth should alert the people about the level of intoxication in the discourse. India’s population and demography deserve no less than eight per cent GDP growth. But that will remain elusive, for the ruling dispensation has missed the bus.

‘Saving’ Ladakh

There is anger and fear in the Himalayas. The government is executing ‘Parvatmala’, a development scheme in 13-Himalayan states. Development means tunneling, blasting mountains and flattening tree cover to mine the resources. Sonam Wangchuk is angry, and he says “all is not well” in Ladakh.

The Pioneer in an Editorial has singled out the Ladakh administration for putting Wangchuk under house arrest, as he set out for a five-day non-violent peaceful hunger protest. The daily warned that if the concerns of Wangchuk is not heard, we may soon be faced with calamity in the Himalayas as a consequence of reckless ‘development’. Wangchuk, who became a household name after Aamir Khan-starrer ‘Three Idiots’ hit the screens, is no ordinary person. His concerns are backed by scientific evidences which have noted the melting of the glaciers in the lower ranges of Himalaya, including Kargil-Ladakh sector.

The people have short memory, and the government is without the memory recall faculty. The scare of Joshimath is being forgotten so soon. The government has more ears for contractors than the local people. This augurs not well for the fragile ecology of the Himalayas.

Pakistan Singed

The toll in the Peshawar Mosque blast has crossed 100, while several others have been maimed, after a suicide terror attack blew off during prayers. The Asian Age in an Editorial said that the attack was aimed at the ruling establishment, for the mosque was amid high security zone. The daily stated that Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa has been a haven for dreaded terrorists for four decades now. The daily also empathised with the Pakistani police, which are bleeding from the dance of terror.

Onus for bloodshed entirely lies with the Pakistani Army and the political thugs in Islamabad. The US and western nations also have bloods on their hands, for they bail out Pakistan without making a pre-condition that Islamabad should scorch the terror harvests from her fertile land.

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