Published On: Tue, Nov 14th, 2017

For OMELETTE, Egg Needs to be Broken -Mohan Sethi

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mohan sethiAfter seeing pieces of old 1000 rupee notes lay on the street in Ahmedabad on this 8th November, during a protest on the ‘Black-Day’ related to the demonetization (Reuters ),  It is bound to remind of those most disturbed 50-60 days of the November last year when several similar reports came in of these currency notes seen floating in the rivers and/or lying  around burnt.   And, all this in the wake of the following Headline:

Demonetization a reckless step, organized loot, says Manmohan Singh

PTI/ Ahmedabad/ November 7, 2017: Describing the BJP-led government demonetization exercise as a reckless step, former Prime Minister today said scrapping higher value currency notes was organized loot and legalized plunder.”

Well, Dr Manmohan Singh is one of the top economists of the world and cannot be taken lightly, even though he is currently a part of the political campaign in Gujarat.

Yet, it is worth reproducing what Lord Meghnad Desai, the most unattached British writer-politician, has reminded in his popular weekly column – Out of my mind/Keep Changing –  on 12Nov2017/Indian Express :

“Memories are short.   When 26 years ago, Narasimha Rao and Dr Manmohan Singh launched their revolution in economic policy with a double devaluation, there was near unanimous denunciation by the leading economists of what they had done. Ruination was predicted. The World Bank was thought to be dictating India’s policy. Even after all these years, the CPM/CPI keep denouncing neoliberalism. They prefer socialist stagnation.

For a government to be criticised for undertaking deep reform is almost invariably a compliment. The BJP should be proud that it has undertaken several policy initiatives which have begun to clear the decades of debris left from earlier economic policies. Lenin said you could not make an omelet without breaking eggs, nor a revolution without breaking heads. There is still an unfinished business which will bring forth cries of anguish; ignore them.”

To a layman, it really is unimportant at this stage whether this Day 08Nov  is observed as a “Black Day” or celebrated as  a day for “Demolition of the Black-Money ”.

What is important is that as long as any government is doing something to undo the past mistakes with integrity, honesty and with a clear mind, it is bound to take time, for proper evaluation and recognition.   

It is worth recalling what all that poor, almost forgotten, PM Narasimhan Rao (with Dr. Manmohan Singh as  his Finance Minister) had to face 26 years ago on the most drastic step of that time – the Devaluation of Indian Rupee, after his predecessor, PM Chandershekar,  had already mortgaged the entire Gold of the nation with IMF in the Swiss and British Banks.  Over a period, came in the prosperity.  It brought in the kind of competitive openness which changed the entire spectrum.

Similarly, Modi and his team also shall have to wait before the goal of the cashless transparent open economy starts showing the desired results.

And there is nothing to worry, as long as following reports keep coming in regularly::

– India makes it to Top 100 in ‘ease of doing business’ | Business Line

– IMF chief says Indian economy on ‘solid track’ | The Indian Express,

– India more attractive to do biz than World Bank ranking suggests: Panagariya (ex-Chief of NITI Ayog).

With high hopes and supposedly ‘clean commitment’, we do not have any reason to feel doomed even if the current GDP is showing some signs of slow-down.

Egg is broken,  Omelette is in the process …Let’s wait and watch !!

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