A worrying trend: India's new economy can not be a monopoly board

Just as opening up the economy in the 1990s was a windfall for the current generation of middle-class Indians, excessive economic concentration will be a headache for the next

Mukesh Ambani (left) and Gautam Adani (right)

Andy Mukherjee | Bloomberg
Two years ago, India rolled out a laudable plan to unlock the capital trapped in some of its smaller airports. But the actual outcome from privatisation was less than reassuring: All six airfields put on the block went to one bidder. 

If that wasn’t enough, multiple media reports now say that Ahmedabad, Gujarat-based billionaire Gautam Adani, an early and enthusiastic supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, might also succeed in taking control of the already-privatised Mumbai airport, as well as a new one coming up on the financial center’s outskirts. 

Airports are natural monopolies. To have one private owner controlling eight or more — a fresh batch of six will soon go under the hammer — can’t possibly be great

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First Published: Aug 25 2020 | 11:42 AM IST

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