Six injured as bus falls into drain

first_imgSix persons were injured when a Rajasthan Roadways bus, in which they were travelling, plunged into a drain near Chaksu on National Highway-12, about 40 km from here, early morning on February 5. The accident took place at a bridge near the Sheetla dam in Chaksu town.The bus was pulled out of the drain with the help of a crane, while the passengers were rescued through boats. Three of those injured were referred to Sawai Man Singh Government Hospital in Jaipur for treatment.The civil defence and police teams were pressed into service for the rescue operation, while the local villagers rushed to pull the passengers out of water. The bus with about 30 passengers was travelling from Jaipur to Kota.According to the initial reports, the driver lost control when the bus was crossing the bridge. The bus fell into the drain after breaking the railing of the bridge.last_img read more

Kamal Nath & Clyde Prestowiz at India Today Conclave meet, 2007

first_img“It’s time to reach out”Kamal NathKAMAL NATH UNION MINISTER FOR COMMERCE & INDUSTRYGlobalisation means different things to different people. It means different things to different professions. It means different things to different countries. There are two distinct views on what globalisation means-to the farmer in Burkina Faso and the farmer,”It’s time to reach out”Kamal NathKAMAL NATH UNION MINISTER FOR COMMERCE & INDUSTRYGlobalisation means different things to different people. It means different things to different professions. It means different things to different countries. There are two distinct views on what globalisation means-to the farmer in Burkina Faso and the farmer in the United States. Nevertheless, globalisation does have a common message: geography is history.When we embarked on globalisation, the challenge before us was: what is the model we follow? And the lesson we learnt was that there is no model for India. We had to globalise. And when we talk about our economic reforms, we, in other words, talk of globalisation, we discuss how we are going to engage with the global economy. Today we have seen the mass of economic activity shifting from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean. People talk about outsourcing and loss of jobs. It is not outsourcing that led to loss of jobs, it was technology. The new global social architecture is driven by globalisation and technology. At the heart of globalisation lies global competitiveness. If India hadn’t been engaged with the global economy, we would have never reached the competitive levels we have reached today. It’s this great change which took place in a calibrated manner.LET’S ENSURE GLOBALISATION REACHES THE 300 MILLION PEOPLE WHO LIVE ON LESS THAN A DOLLAR PER DAY. But does globalisation affect the lives of 300 million people who live on less than one dollar a day? What do we tell the thousands of villagers who have never ever heard the ring of a landline telephone when we talk about six million new cell phone connections a day? To them, to our villagers, globalisation is still an abstract concept. If I go to my district, I cannot talk of globalisation to people. Their worry is about getting their children into school, about health care and power. And in a democracy, as you know, you will be sent packing home if you are going to talk a language which people do not relate to. So that is the challenge before us today.Take the controversy on SEZs and the political furore in some parts of the country. SEZs are simply an industrial cluster with an infrastructure meant for exports. You don’t require experts to tell you that land has to be there for industry. But when you want to acquire land, it has to be in a fair, equitable, all-inclusive manner, Today 10 people depend on one hectare of land. Unless their subsistence needs of income and livelihood are addressed there would be no equity and no sustainability in globalisation.advertisementAnd that is the biggest challenge of globalisation today. And here we have now voices, voices emerging. The greatest champions of globalisation-particularly the US-are now talking about guarding themselves against this rampant globalisation. India, on the other hand, is now engaging with the world saying we need to globalise. India has to globalise. It is not only that the world’s perception about India has changed. Our own perception about ourselves is changing. We no more talk about better lives for our children and grand children. We talk of better life in our own lifetime. That is the new-found confidence which globalisation has brought about in India. And we need to ensure that this process of globalisation reaches out.”Is it sustainable?”Clyde PrestowizCLYDE PRESTOWIZ PRESIDENT, ECONOMIC STRATEGY INSTITUTE, WASHINGTON D.C.Let me give you a personal example about doing business in a flat world. Last weekend my son who is a software developer asked me if I would co-invest in a snow removing business? He explained that the company had all the equipment and contracts and a monopoly. I asked why invest in a snow removing business? After all he studied computer science. He said, “Don’t you get it? The snow is here and they can’t move it to India, it can’t be outsourced.” Another time I had to be taken to a hospital as they thought I was having a stroke. It was about three in the morning and they did a brain scan. There were two interesting facts: I had a brain and that the scan was being read online in Bangalore. My radiologist had been outsourced.So, this is doing business in the so-called flat world. But, it raises obvious questions about where is all this going. If the radiologists are all going to be in Bangalore and the software is all going to be done in Bangalore and the manufacturing is all going to be done in China, where is this going? It is a fascinating question. Countries are doing studies, benchmarking against others on competitiveness and finding new technologies. And they have got prime ministerlevel committees and cabinet committees and all their business communities are focusing on what they are going to do to compete in the future, because they are scared to death of the challenge being posed by India, by China, by the rest of the developing world and the question is, you know: what are we going to do?advertisementCompetitiveness is important but we need to be just as concerned about access to markets. And, in fact, the world is much less flat than we have been admitting. I also want to turn to something that I think is, in a way, much more significant and much more dangerous. As we look at the tremendous benefits that globalisation is generating right now today, think about how sustainable the current situation is. Will the Americans be able to indefinitely consume more than they produce? Will the Chinese, the Japanese and the OPEC indefinitely buy the American treasury bonds to finance their exports to the US? Will the dollar remain the world’s currency? Will oil be priced in dollars in ten years? Will semiconductors be sold in dollars in ten years? Is this sustainable? Nobody knows the answer to this but that it is something that those of us who are benefiting from and promoting globalisation, should be addressing.DiscussionQ. You spoke about inclusive growth, particularly for the rural farm workers. At the same time, the developed world, specially the US is unlikely to cut subsidies. How does this balance out? Nath: When I was talking about structural flaws, one of the greatest structural flaws in the world trade is agriculture and the flaw in agriculture is huge subsidies given by the European Union and the United States amounting to almost $1 billion per day. Just the US has subsidies of $75 billion to agriculture. Take cotton. We import about $500 mn of cotton and convert to yarn and garments and sell it to the US. But there is also subsidised wheat, rice, meat, soya etc. Unless the issue of subsidies is resolved the impasse will continue. Without this it won’t be trade or trade flow but subsidies flow. The competition is not the US farmer but the US Treasury.Q. The unstoppable consumption by the US citizens is also putting a huge load on the sustainability of the planet. They won’t sign Kyoto protocol but want others to curb energy consumption. How will this play out in the long run? Prestowitz: I think it is an even more daunting and challenging issue. The US accounts for about five percent of global population and 30-33 percent of global consumption. So, you can justly criticise the profligacy and the hypocrisy of the US. But you are still left with the problem as nobody tells the US anything as everybody wants to sell to the Americans. I think we need a global solution because if the rest of the world did nothing there will be a global financial crisis.advertisementQ. It is profitable for the US to produce less and import from the outside world. That enables them to free resources for technology driven growth. How will consumption reduce if they remain net consumers? Prestowitz: Any economy needs consumers and producers. You can’t have an economy where there is no consumption, no production. The difficulty I see in the world economy today is that there is a kind of lack of consumers. In the US, there are no savings; we are financing our consumption by importing foreign capital. So, effectively Americans are mortgaging their future or the future of their children. The way the US is borrowing today, if it was an individual it would have been bankrupt. Ditto if it was a corporate. What would happen if East Asian countries do not politically support the United States? Suppose they manage their currency. It may so happen that the dollar would get devalued. What will happen? Will there be imbalance in the world? Paul Walker, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve recently predicted a 75 percent chance of a global financial crisis within the next four years. I believe that the dollar will devalue between 50 and 70 percent on a traded basis, sometime within the next 5-7 years. China as you know is putting together an investment fund in order to begin investing its reserves in something other than the US treasury bills. And all of that suggests to me an eventual move away from the dollar.last_img read more