India is a vast country with an area of nearly 3.29 million square kilometres and a population of 1339 million as per the data of the year 2017. In my last take, I had begun by stating a few critical things, and this article goes forward in listing the apparent needs of Indian voters.
Public sector units in India are beset with inefficiencies, poor marketing, and bureaucratic appointments. Their stocks are valued low in Bourses, and their accumulated reserves are thin to a moderate size. A healthier public sector could bolster the annual budgets like big shots in the arms in the form of dividends paid to the majority owning government. Indian governments, over the years, have planned stake sell-offs in such units but the actual infusion of professionals, after that, has been wanting. Such units do have an existing large pool of professionals of various categories but tightening performances through tough accountabilities is still to be achieved. Technocrats can play a big part here. Public sector crude oil refining and processing units are typical examples with real losses running in several thousand millions of dollars.
A growing and efficient small scale manufacturing sector can boost any economy to any heights. Despite the presence of several millions of such units, there is an eerie feeling that this sector is just about fine in a small manner with the significant chunk unable to do well. Entrepreneurial capital and initiatives still do come forth in India in a big way in this sector, but then firm mortality rates are high. The government encourages through policies that offer doles (subsidies) and permissions, yet poor acceptability of products and services, low-quality marketing and inability to hire professionals at higher salaries still kill these units somewhere rather soon. Small and medium sectors suffer likewise. Policy mapping needs to be tightened, and offerings of these units should see some category of captive markets.
Education in India is still rote oriented. That is, those who read through books pass examinations. In secondary education number of students that score over 90 percent marks is growing exponentially, courtesy the training and coaching establishments, focusing on examination questions and their answers. Skills-based education is still not quite right in the forefront. Poor scoring students go languishing every year, unable to find good educational institutions for important adult education. The above two are connected with this third in that the same educated set of persons form the vital workforce in all manufacturing and service establishments. A sharp wake-up call is needed and increasing the number of skill-based institutions, and training setups are the needs of the hour. The attitude of society should also be turned in favor of skilled labor, working in small assignments involving manual efforts. The dignity of labor is to be lauded all over.
By S Gupta
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