Demonetisation: ‘Objectives didn’t matter’; Economy on GST wings; Apple boards elephant

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Opinion Watch

Demonetisation: ‘Objectives didn’t matter’

The Supreme Court in a 4:1 verdict upheld the showpiece decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for demonetization. The dissenting voice in the verdict has taken the Reserve Bank of India for a task. The people and the government have forgotten the event. Even after six year, imprints of the decision can be seen in several walks of life.

The Pioneer in an Editorial has welcomed the verdict, but devoted much attention to the dissenting Judge Justice BV Nagarathna, asking the government to take her views “very seriously”. She came down heavily on the RBI for submissions to the court, which were full of “as desired by the government”, questioning if the Central bank functioned with an independent application of mind. The daily opined that the RBI looked was like a deer looking at the headlight (in the darkness). The daily has further while being kind in words stated that this decision was not the best taken by the Modi government in over eight years.

The data, including that of the National Crime Research Bureau, bares hollowness of the objectives as stated to argue the case of demonetization. At that time even a peon in the BJP office had become an expert in the economy, and surprisingly his and top minds of the government arguments were same.      

Economy on GST wings

The GST collections for December at about Rs 1.5 lakh crore, a third such feat, may cheer the government ahead of the February 1 Budget, for it suggests return of the consumer demands and the economy largely gaining steam. The number will be inclusive of the post-festive spending by the people.

The Hindu in an Editorial has lauded the GST collections, coming against November’s which was a three months low. The December collections were 2.5 per cent higher than November, but 15 per cent more year-on-year, noted the Chennai-based daily. It also stated that the factory and the services activities must have been busier to give such number in the GST collections. Importantly, the daily noted that the December GST collections were significant because the previous two occasions when the Rs 1.5 lakh crore mark was touches or breached were on accounts of year-end tax pressure and pre-festive stocking respectively. Also, the collections are in the backdrop of high inflation.

The GST collections are indicative of the robustness of the Indian economy, which is resilient of the government policy freeze. The people toil hard to earn their livelihoods and the government dips in their pockets by ever expanding the scope of GST with enhanced tax rates on goods which should have never been taxed.

Apple boards elephant

Apple, the maker of IPhone, was among the first US-based manufacturers to explore China alternative. Steve Jobs, late Apple founder, had deep India connections. While being a large market for premium mobile phones, it was most appropriate for Apple to manufacture within India.

The Economic Times in an Editorial has stated that the contract manufacturers and their vendors of Apple have created 1,50,000 jobs in India. It also noted that the mobile phone export has gone past $9 billion mark. The daily has hailed Apple as India’s Brand Ambassador. The business daily also hailed India’s production linked incentive (PLI) scheme to promote local manufacturing.

But it may be known that only 25 per cent of the approved entities under the PLI scheme, which is principal mover of the Make in India, have begun operations. That suggests that the rest 75 per cent still needs to be convinced.      

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