Category: Indian Constituition

FDI in Retail Sector in India

Departmental Store replaced the small ‘neighbourhood’ retail outlets that had traditionally specialised in different consumer-goods. And Malls outbid Departmental Stores by buying consumer-goods at wholesale (heavily discounted) prices directly from the manufacturers/ authorised distributors, and then selling the same at prices which are less than the cost-price of the small ‘next-door’ retailer.

FDI-funded-Malls (obviously larger, multi-Brand Malls) will aim at selling foreign branded ‘consumer durable goods’, packaged foods and beverages etc to the Indian ‘middle class’, often with the help of ‘consumer-loans’ extended by foreign banks this is a circuitous route to ‘dumping’.

Except for the attraction of a reputed Brand-name, these electronic or electric goods fail to provide any real long-term advantage to Indian consumers over indigenously manufactured goods prices of foreign goods are highly deceptive in that repair-costs (after the ‘Warranty period’ is over) are approximately 75-100% of the price of new equipment; and even during the Warranty period, the cost of transportation of these goods to the ‘authorised Service Centre’ is prohibitive (many a times, no such Centre exists in the State in which you are using this product, or even in India) moreso, these Malls cease to play any role of mediator after they have sold these goods to you (the Mall asks you to contact the Manufacturer directly). And even if you approach a Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, this ‘redressal authority’ fails to find any ‘Company-Representative’ in India upon whom to ‘serve’ its Notices nor can it find any ‘Company-Assets’ that it may attach in order to pay you any compensation at all.

The packaged food/ beverages use colourful and attractive-looking large packages that are, in fact, half-empty. Moreso, except for the foreign-made-stamp (a ‘style’ symbol or fad), the packaged items have no better nutritional value than what the raw indigenous ones have been giving you all these years except that some unscrupulous businessmen are adulterating the locally produced items.

How can then FDI-in-Retail lead to “growth” of Indian Economy?

The Central Government now claims that FDI will create 1 crore jobs, but fails to explain:-

How did the Government arrive at this figure?

How much ‘foreign’ Investment is expected into this Sector?

How many Malls will be opened?

What will be the size of each Mall in terms of, say, number of employees?

When the Government says that 30% of products sold in the Mall shall be purchased from the Indian Small-Scale-Sector, what does this figure refer to (i.e. the Unit of Measurement):

(i) value of goods stocked/ sold ?

(ii) number/ variety of products stocked/ sold?

iii) how will this number be calculated by clubbing the products under ‘generic’ heads, e.g. ‘cosmetics’ or ‘toiletries’ as single products each (or each type of cosmetics/ toiletries)?

How will the price of Indian farm-products, purchased by these Malls, determined will it be the Minimum-Support-Price already fixed for Government’s ‘Public Distribution System’, or will it be left to the ‘market forces’?

Who will determine and control the type and degree of ‘standardisation’ of these 30% products?

Who will bear the cost of ‘back-end’ improvement in these products?

There are many more such relevant questions that need be answered…

Every Welfare State, the World over, taxes the rich in order to finance schemes to empower the poor, but the UPA Government in India is indirectly taxing the hand-to-mouth lower-middle class and the modestly well-off upper middle class families by (i) removing subsidy from the LPG, (ii) allowing back-breaking price-rise in essential commodities, (iii) standing  as a mute witness to rampant corruption (including the siphoning off by many politicians and bureaucrats into their own pockets, the Funds that were allocated for providing free food-grains, primary health etc to those living ‘Below Poverty Line’. The revenue earned from withdrawing subsidies from the poor, is being spent on subsidising air-travel of rich business tycoons by giving ‘bail-out’ Grants to the sick Indian career [Indian (airlines)] that has been rendered sick, in the first place, by corrupt and incompetent ‘public servants’. UPA Government pays out huge largesse (as ‘bail-out Grants’) to this career!

Moreso, Govt waives off the loans of rich Zamindars (‘feudal lords’) loans taken for their ‘ostentatious consumption’, out of the aforesaid revenue; whereas those who are committing suicides all over India are not these rich farmers (who are also exempted from paying any Income-Tax on their ‘Farm Incomes’ out which some of them have purchased limousines costing crores of rupees) but the poor ‘ryots’ who are landless-labourers and till Zamindars’ lands on ‘batai’ (crop-sharing’ basis). It is these peasants who make all the investment on the land though they get no ‘loan’ from the Nationalised Banks because the Banks demand a ‘security-deposit’ whereas the ryots have no land to ‘pawn’.

It is the rich who are growing richer under the wrong policies followed by this Govt, and such persons as are earning ‘easy-money’ out of bribes/ cheating/ piracy etc whose billowing incomes are being touted as ‘National GDP Growth’ it is to meet the demands for luxuries by these noveau riches that is fanning the desire of foreign firms to invest in India. How will the masses gain from an investment that is not meant for them?

The Author can generate, within one year and out of a modest budget, for the poor masses of Indian Nation what has not been achieved over the past 65 years by lakhs of bureaucrats who spent (or amassed for their own coffers) thousands of crores of rupees of ‘public moneys’!

URGENT Socio-Legal Reforms in Justice Delivery System

With 66% of Indian population Living Below Poverty Line and the high Cost of Litigation (in terms of Court-Fees, Typing and Photocopying Charges, Oath Commissioners’ Fees, Lawyers’ Fees, Commutation Expenses, the Lost Wage-Days for Attending the Court in a matter which remains sub judice for several generations , etc)   coupled with the Common Law system of Adversarial Justice, does not ensure a level playing field for the masses. In the Civil Law countries, the Magistrate takes into consideration all the aspects of every case whether or not the weaker party’s Advocate has pleaded the same or not.

Under the Common Law (‘adversarial’ system) a Court does not really attempt to discover the Truth, it only weighs the arguments of the two Adversaries (represented by their Advocates) as supported by the ‘evidence’. And evidence is something that has been ‘proved’ by a particular man-made process whether or not it is, in fact, true.

To make matters worse, since the year 2005 there is a continuously rising incidence of exposed cases of corruption (leave alone nepotism) amongst officials of the judiciary. Not only the media has now started questioning the decisions of the Courts, but the man in the street has started throwing brick-bats on the judges even policemen are being shot, run over etc.

Supreme Court in India is opposed to the idea of having its Benches in any city other than Delhi. Moreso, the Supreme Court Rules mandate that only the Advocates-on-Record can file pleadings and appearances before it; further that such Advocates must have an Office within a radius of 16 KMs from the seat of Supreme Court.

However, the said Rules permit formation of a Company by an Advocate-on-Record with another Advocate(s), and also enable e-filing (including payment of Court Fees on-line); even the petitioners appearing in-person can avail of e-filing facility. Hence, the said Rules can be easily modified so as not to compel the litigants (Clients) – who are living or working in far off places (like Chennai, Guwahati, Ladakh etc.) to travel all the way to Delhi just to find and consult a Supreme Court Lawyer. Moreso, now the Lawyers have been permitted to host their Law-Firm’s website online.

Under the above proposal, one partner of an Advocates’ Firm may be allowed to have a camp-office in, say, Chennai — whereas the Company’s main Office shall remain situated within the aforesaid radius of 16 KMs of the Supreme Court premises; and service of Notices/Copies by the Court’s Registry or Opposite Counsels can be effected upon such Company’s main Office in Delhi — irrespective of the fact that the pleadings in that case were drafted by a Partner working out of Chennai and filed either through his/her Delhi-Office or via the aforesaid e-filing facility.

This reform will immensely help the lower middle-class and poor Litigants. Author’s proposal for dispensing with the statement of facts within the body of pleadings (in addition to their adumberation in the List of Dates & Events) by way of inclusion in the Affidavit a declaration about the List of Dates & Events being true, was also accepted — so were the proposals for a flag-car and escort-jeep for the CJI [proposal was sent through Mr Virk (DCP-Security) & Mr Kapoor (Registrar-Admin)], as also blanking off the view of Judges’ Entry/Exit Gates at Tilak Marg from the ventilator of Firemen’s room in the College of Arts.

Institute of Softskills Development

In-Trust Foundation (Regd.)

In-Trust Foundation was registered on 26.9.1984, and is recognised by the Union of India. The Income-Tax Department has extended s.80G exemption to the donations made to it. This Foundation brings, under one umbrella, the five main religions which are practised by Indians. Its educational Institutes/Centres are being financed, under Bhagidari scheme, by small investors as well as a Financial Institution. In-Trust Foundation runs two B-Schools and a Journal.

MVD Global Business School (Lucknow)

Mahamaya-Vishnu-Dattatreya Global Business School and the Institute of Business Softskills are being established in Lucknow as Centres of Excellence for PGDBM (equivalent to MBA) programme and Business Softskills course. One of these Centres will be affiliated to a reputed University in Europe/Canada. Their parent body (In-Trust Foundation) is recognised by the Union of India; and the Income-Tax Department has extended s.80G exemption to the donations made to it. Our Academic Council comprises of eminent Indian and Foreign Academicians, Justices & Technocrats. These Institutes are being financed by individual investors and a Financial Institution.

PUL-SATOR (International Refereed Journal)

Vide Regulation dated 01.06.2009, the University Grants Commission has made it mandatory prior to the grant of any PhD degree that the Candidate must have published at least one Paper in a Refereed Journal before submitting his/her Thesis, but not many such journals have been made available in India — especially those that rule out affiliation-bias by using Blind Peer-Review method. Hence, at the exhortation of Academics-Administrators, Teachers, Students and other intellectuals the In-Trust Foundation is pleased to convert its journal into a Quarterly Refereed International Journal on Management subjects.

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