STRANGE are the ways of the government at times. For instance, in the beginning of the twentieth century, the government of Madras Presidency created two posts of LBC (Linlithgow Bull Clerk) and LBA (Linlithgow Bull Assistant) merely to please the incoming Viceroy; and the two posts were abolished only in the 1970s on the recommendations of the State Finance Commission.
December 6, 2018
TODAY, a whiff of crony capitalism, i.e. a politician helping a businessman or vice versa, results in a scandal. But in the pre-Independence era, when India and Indians fought for freedom from the British Raj, there was no such stigma and putridity attached to such connections. Businessmen openly rubbed shoulders with politicians, and the latter publicly walked with the former. Industrialists funded the freedom movement, and the national leaders backed the former in shaping British’s economic and business policies.
THERE was a consensus among central ministers with previous experiences in civil services, and former and serving civil servants that the mainstream media and society does not highlight the good work done in the field of administration and governance. Prabhat Kumar, former Cabinet Secretary and the first Governor, Jharkhand, felt that “good work is boring” and, therefore, “not highlighted”. General Vijay Kumar Singh, Minister of State for External Affairs, thought that “many who do tremendous work go unrecognised”.
INDIA is at war with an invisible enemy. This adversary in none other than smuggling and counterfeiting, which are together termed as illicit trade. Illicit trade is the world’s largest growing industry and its size is estimated to range between $650 billion and $3 trillion according to multiple studies. This evil business represents 10 per cent of global trade and has been termed as the crime of the 21 century by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).