Sign of ill health
- Sreesanth, Jiju Janardhan lived in independently booked rooms: Cops
- India to convey concerns over Ladakh incursion to Chinese Premier
- IPL 2013 LIVE SCORE: Maxwell falls early in stiff run-chase
- Narendra Modi: India losing sheen as agricultural nation
- Rajapaksa slams Tamil diaspora for lack of support in reconciliation process
Delay on disinvestment in PSUs past sell-by date is bad economics — and poor politics too
Plans for the disinvestment of Scooters India Ltd (SIL) stand abandoned precisely when investors and corporates are looking for a sign that the change of guard in the finance ministry would improve the economy's weather forecast. Manmohan Singh is back at the helm and the government proposes to disinvest in 75 PSUs — 15 in the current fiscal year. SIL should have been sold off already, having diligently made losses for 35 of its 40 years in business. Its failure to return profits is remarkable since it produces three-wheelers, for which demand is consistently high. The cabinet cleared the sale of the 95 per cent stake held by the government in May last year, despite the reservations of Rita Bahuguna Joshi, president of the Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee. But the process was stalled in August as the party geared up for state polls. That may have been a credible electoral compulsion at the time but it is no longer valid.
The SIL sale should have been revived this year. Instead, it was written off in favour of a new revival package that will probably fail to resuscitate the company, which has been declared clinically dead by reconstruction agencies. The government is sending out conflicting signals on disinvestment. On the one hand, it is organising roadshows in the Persian Gulf, Japan, Singapore and Hong Kong to attract investment in PSUs. On the other, it is holding on to PSUs past their sell-by date. It dragged its feet on selling 10 per cent stake in NALCO from March 2010 to June 2012, when the disinvestment department moved a cabinet note. In the last fiscal year, the government had committed to raising Rs 40,000 crore from PSU disinvestment but collected a third of that figure. This year's target is Rs 30,000 crore, but lack of clarity and commitment could again cause a shortfall.
- Destitute, orphan students outclass rest in Andhra Class 10 exams
- To re-energise ties, PM wants to visit US, waits for confirmation
- NIA court says no terror link, frees 'Hizbul militant' Liyaqat on bail
- CBI arrests its coal allotments investigator on bribery charge
- ‘Cricketer-bookie Amit may have used Jiju to reach Sree’
- BCCI chief N Srinivasan says police must prove spot-fixing allegations