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Institution wrecker

Reading the editorial ‘Wages of arrogance’ and Pratap Bhanu Mehta’s ‘Battering ram’ (IE,April 29),one must observe that while Nehru....


April 30, 2009 10:55:07 pm

Institution wrecker

•Reading the editorial ‘Wages of arrogance’ and Pratap Bhanu Mehta’s ‘Battering ram’ (IE,April 29),one must observe that while Nehru struggled to build institutions,his successors at the helm of the Congress never hesitated to wreck them. Indira Gandhi,infamously,dealt a body blow to the judiciary and Parliament. Over the years little has escaped the Congress’s grip. The party’s leadership is adept at using power and high office to help allies and friends.

— Prasad Malladi

Nidadavole

•The editorial ‘Wages of arrogance’ and the article ‘Battering ram’ rightly indict the Congress for its “propensity for institution-wrecking”. The latest CBI action over Quattrocchi seems to end the shameless saga of the party’s complicity in protecting a “friend”. As Mehta’s piece points out,there’s a clear pattern that began with the Emergency when constitutional bodies like the judiciary and the investigating agencies were undermined to serve the ruling party’s agenda. That trend has continued under the Congress.

— M. Ratan

New Delhi

Wrong time

•n The Indian government’s clean chit to Ottavio Quattrocchi flies in the face of the popular perception of him as guilty. This parallels the Congress’s earlier decision to field Jagdish Tytler and Sajjan Kumar in the polls despite popular perceptions. Public indignation forced the Congress to drop the two. Since the Tytler controversy,and now the Quattrocchi case,have been resurrected at an unfortunate moment for the party,it might suffer politically in the ongoing elections.

— R.J. Khurana

Bhopal

Minister of logic

•This refers to ‘Union Law Minister’s gem… foreigners are not like us…’ (IE,April 29). Indians should be ashamed of the ridiculous statements of their law minister. Who made him the arbiter on how “logical” Indians are? And why is the Bofors investigation a “curse”? Is it because his party hasn’t played a clean role in it?

— S.B. Shivdasani

Pune

Counterpoint

•Perhaps to say that bankers’ work was flawed is to make a sweeping statement (‘Bank on the market’,IE,April 28). Problems with US and European banking (likely to erupt in India in the coming months) arose since the loan appraisal system had become parameterised and mathematical formulae-driven,with hardly any credit quality inputs. Each bank,with a view to hastening the process,went in for organisational compartmentalisation into different verticals. Bonuses and variable pay depended on the revenue output of the vertical without any correlation to the asset quality — the back-up collateral rather than the business model,the industry segment,realisable net worth of the borrower or management quality. It was known that the collateral values were going up at an unsustainable pace,but this never figured in the calculations and the senior management ignored it at their own peril.

— Tanvi Girotra New Delhi

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