India’s loony Left

The geriatric gentry wipes out US$23 billion in one day

More than the prevaricating Congress party, it is the geriatric and loony Left that is a cause for concern. As Amberish Diwanji points out, the Left has already started taking strong positions against privatisation ‘disinvestment’.

After an informal meeting of leaders belonging to the two parties, CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan said that new government has to do away with the policy of divestment of public sector undertakings.

“Obviously it goes without saying that the policy of divesting PSUs should go,” he told reporters when asked whether the divestment policy has to go if the Left were to participate in the new government.

Echoing similar views, CPI-M General Secretary Harkishan Singh Surjeet said: “We cannot afford it (the divestment programme followed by the National Democratic Alliance). We oppose the divestment of profit-making PSUs. All the mistakes of the NDA government have to be rectified. [Rediff]

Strangers as they are to market economics, they do not bother to ask why private investors would be interested in buying only loss-making state-owned companies. And today’s profit making PSUs can easily become tomorrow’s ‘sick units’ especially if the Left continues to block labour reform. While India is probably in no danger of becoming one huge West Bengal, the ability of the Left front politicians to bully an apologetic Manmohan Singh must not be under-estimated.

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