Apropos Anita Inder Singh's article “Why India lags behind China” (October 16), there are some other pressing reasons that have hindered India’s industrial progress vis-à-vis China. True that the style of governance between authoritarian and democratic ones does not matter, but the type of democracy does. India is a flawed democracy in which the ruling party and the Opposition see each other as adversaries rather than as collaborators in achieving national goals. This has led to the “versus complex”— what the government does must be opposed and obstructed. A partisan outlook has replaced judging issues on their merit. These ongoing internal frictions have slowed down the benefits of the new economic policy of 1991 and demographic dividend.
Second, labour productivity continues to be very low. It has less to do with skill gap and more with the role of trade unions. New technology, performance-based career advancement, abolishing unproductive work practices — everything is opposed. The worst example is the banking industry where the rise in non-performing assets is accompanied by rise in wages.
Third, India remains a corrupt country, the claims of the Narendra Modi government notwithstanding. We rank among the lowest in that respect globally. This has led to higher costs of projects, poor quality of output and underutilisation of capital.
Y G Chouksey, Pune
Letters can be mailed, faxed or e-mailed to:
The Editor, Business Standard
Nehru House, 4 Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg
New Delhi 110 002
Fax: (011) 23720201 •
All letters must have a postal address and telephone number