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CHENNAI

8 THINK BusinessLine
THURSDAY APRIL 6 2017

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thursday, april 6, 2017


Return of the stoning season in Kashmir
Its time India forced the issue on Kashmiri youth being held hostage to diktats of separatist leaders within and across the LoC
Road rage
India to resume the sterile com-
The strike call by truckers is the result of posite dialogue process.
Why does Pakistan place so much
a perfect storm of developments. emphasis on this so-called com-
Policy intervention could help

T
posite dialogue process? This pro-
cess, initiated in 1997, was the out-
he rumblings of discontent from In- come of one of the worst blunders
G PARTHASARATHY in Indian diplomacy, matched only

T
dian goods transporters are now threat-
by our diplomatic ineptitude dur-
ening to escalate into a full-blown he year 2016 was a tumul- ing the Sharm-el-Sheikh asco.
strike. Truckers are protesting recent tuous one in the Kashmir Primary importance is given to
regulatory changes that promise to squeeze prof- Valley. The gunning down what Pakistan wishes to discuss, in-
itability in this already thin-margin business. of Burhan Wani, a terror- cluding Jammu and Kashmir,
ist who built his image by imaginat- Siachen, Sir Creek, and hydro-elec-
Among the laundry list of issues agged by the in- ive use of the social media, was ac- tric/river water projects in Jammu
dustry body are the steep hike in third party insur- companied by an unprecedented, and Kashmir, which Pakistan likes
ance premiums, hikes in penalties in the new Mo- but well-crafted agitation using to block.
tor Vehicles Act, expiry of registration dates for stone-pelting youths to confront se- Terrorism features only towards
curity forces. the very bottom of this list. It is Set up To feed on disgruntlement NISSAR AHMAD
BS-III vehicles, opaque functioning of road trans- The winter snows restricted such rendered even more marginal by
port authorities, and the proposed vehicle scrap- enthusiastic and carefully nanced coupling it with drug smuggling. even be meetings between the two insurgencies in Baluchistan and the and tried. Even Mirwaiz Umar
ping policy. While there can be no case for com- and planned stone-pelting. The This is a format that suited Pakistan army chiefs. While one cannot ex- Pashtun tribal areas bordering Farooq, who is said to receive be-
promising on road safety or environment by planners, sitting in comfortable ne, as it could unleash terrorism pect signicant change in the stra- Afghanistan. nign treatment, is given to inciting
surroundings in PoK and Pakistan across India and then insist that ter- tegic aims of the Pakistan army, its Islamabad is being repaid in kind crowds regularly, especially after
reducing penalties for truckers, or extending the
did, however, achieve their object- rorism could be discussed peri- present army chief, General Bajwa, by the Afghans, across the disputed the prayers he leads. Those inciting
registration date for BS-III vehicles, it is important ive of getting wide media publicity, pherally, alongside issues such as does not appear to be a afflicted by Durand Line, both in Baluchistan and distributing money to stone
for the Centre to pay heed to the more pragmatic even if it involved disrupting and cultural ties and visas. megalomania like his predecessor. and the Pashtun tribal areas. Sec- pelting youngsters should be put
demands. Despite being the backbone of Indias sacricing the lives of young Kash- The entire dialogue should be ex- tarian violence has reached Punjab behind bars.
logistics network, the trucking industry has long miris. Not surprisingly, the Hurriyat Beyond symbolism clusively security-oriented and in- and Sind. India needs to ensure that The State government and its po-
Conference, receiving instructions The strike by our Special Forces on volve meetings between the chiefs it extends unstinted moral, mater- lice force, including the Special Op-
been neglected by policymakers due to its unor- from ISI handlers, did its bit to in- terrorist areas across the LoC on of the BSF and Pakistan Rangers. ial and diplomatic support to erations Group, should be activated
ganised and fragmented nature. ame public sentiment. September 29 had more than mere Meetings could be considered Afghan efforts to deal with ISI- to take the lead in restoring nor-
The immediate trigger for this strike seems to With the Himalayan snows set to symbolic importance. It signalled a between the chiefs of R&AW and ISI. sponsored terrorism. malcy, with army backing. Terror-
be IRDAs decision to hike insurance premiums melt in the coming weeks, India readiness to strike across the estab- Meetings at the political level ists have been emboldened to
will have to prepare for yet another lished borders at a time and man- should commence only if our con- Meaning business threaten the families of police offi-
for third party vehicle covers by 40-50 per cent in summer of disruption and stone- ner of its choosing. The likes of cerns on terrorism are seen as be- While the security and diplomatic cials. The Punjab police reacted very
its latest annual review. It is true that heavy throwing. The ISI will ensure that Haz Mohammed Saeed and Da- ing rmly addressed. India should efforts to deal with ISI sponsored strongly when their families were
vehicles have been saddled with the steepest revi- Kashmiri youngsters who crossed wood Ibrahim should not ever be continue to back moves by terrorism continue, New Delhi will similarly threatened. There is no
sion in tariffs, and given that third party cover is the LoC are joined by new jihadis allowed to feel secure. To achieve Bangladesh and Afghanistan to also have to consider measures in- reason why the J&K police cannot
from the Lashkar-e-taiba and Jaish- this, the composite dialogue pro- keep Saarc in cold storage while ternally, to signal that it means be similarly motivated.
mandatory, transporters have no option but to
e-Mohammed to serve as cannon cess should be discarded. We promoting links with our eastern business in dealing with those en- Proactive measures are needed to
pay it. The truckers demand that tariffs be de- fodder for their ambitions. Enough merely need to convey our readi- neighbours through forums such couraging, supporting and inciting curtail facilities for the use of social
cided through a Tariff Advisory Committee, rather funds will be provided to get unem- ness to discuss all issues when the as BBIN and Bimstec. Kashmiri youths. New Delhi has too media in the Valley. The ruling coali-
than unilaterally, is also sound. But to be fair, steep ployed youth to resort to stone-pelt- time is appropriate. Pakistan does not appear able to long looked benignly on the Hur- tion partners should set aside their
hikes in the third party premium rates have been ing and getting killed or injured by To begin with, India should insist deliver meaningfully on terrorism. riyat Conference and its role in the differences, with the Mehbooba
return re from security forces. The that in accordance with the agree- Sharif is under siege domestically violence. Mufti-led government taking the
necessitated by high claims ratios over the years social media will be used for incen- ment reached between prime min- because of a Supreme Court en- There is evidence of money-laun- lead in ensuring that the education
which have rendered the business loss-making for diary messaging to stoke passions. isters Narendra Modi and Nawaz quiry into his properties and dering among many Hurriyat lead- of children is not held hostage to
insurers. General insurers are also compelled by Sharif at the Ufa Summit, the DG- wealth abroad. Pakistan is being ers. People like Syed Ali Shah the diktats of separatist leaders and
law to offer third-party covers with unlimited liab- Hardly a dialogue MOs of India and Pakistan should torn apart by sectarian Shia-Sunni Geelani, who take the lead in incit- their patrons across the LoC.
Meanwhile, a propaganda blitz will meet to discuss specic measures and Wahhabi-Su rivalries and viol- ing violence based on instructions
ility, while tariffs are still xed by the regulator. be launched by Pakistan calling on to seal the borders and end inltra- ence. The army is now deployed vir- from across the LoC, need to be The writer is a former High
However, having effected hefty tariff adjustments the world to intervene and compel tion and terrorism. There could tually across the country, ghting charged, moved out of the Valley, Commissioner to Pakistan
for the last six years (truckers claim their premi-
ums are up eight-fold), it is now time for IRDA to

All eyes on the Trump-Xi summit


consider de-control. The removal of price controls
may not immediately reduce premiums, but the
trend in other categories suggests that over time,
competitive forces will kick in to moderate tariffs.
In this context, the truckers should welcome
the new Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill 2016, re-
cently green-agged by the Cabinet. Once passed
The US looks upon China as its main economic adversary. Given this backdrop, there is an air of breathless anticipation
into law, apart from levying hefty penalties for
drunk driving, overloading and safety violations, between US President Don- ing that if China doesnt solve the power and inuence and who cant

W
NS VAGEESH
ald Trump and Chinese problem, US will do it on its own. be red away like those on his tele-
it also promises a rollback of Permit Raj in the ith a surfeit of meet- leader Xi Jinping For China, which is hy- vision shows.
road sector. Online vehicle registration, Aadhaar- ings between top holds the promise of per-sensitive to cri-
based licensing and a national vehicle registry all leaders of various a refreshing and ticism and which First impressions count
promise to reduce the discretionary powers of the countries under the radical depar- lays much A lot rests on the rst impressions
auspices of various forums over the ture from the store in the two leaders form of each other.
state and curb rampant corruption. The Act also
past few years, summit diplomacy usual cloying sending History has shown that both deteri-
proposes a cap on the contentious third party li- has acquired the reputation of be- and fawning and receiv- oration as well as progress in rela-
ability for insurers. On the whole, the truckers ing a rather meaningless exercise. that happens ing sig- tions is possible based on these im-
strike also seems to be a response to the many dis- Bromides about civilisational links, when leaders of nals with pressions. Revisionist historians
ruptions the industry is being confronted with culture, peace, brotherhood, coex- superpowers great sub- have held that the poor impression
istence and goodwill are routinely meet. tlety and that Soviet leader Nikita
within a short time span from demonetisation exchanged even among leaders of dict- nuance, this Khrushchev formed of John F
to the upcoming Goods and Services Tax. The adversarial powers. A sense of suspense able must be a Kennedy, then US president, at their
Centre must reach out to reassure transport oper- Everything is pre-scripted by offi- One hopes they will have a straight- turn rude shock. Con- rst summit in Vienna in 1961 was
ators that most of these changes, though painful cials on both sides almost to the forward and honest conversation when US Sec- fronting a leader one of the main reasons for the
last comma and full stop so that and thrash out differences boldly. retary of who doesnt care a Cuban missile crisis that developed
in the short term, will result in substantial long- there is perhaps little hope for any The build-up to the meeting has of State, Rex Tiller- damn for those attributes and in October 1962. In contrast, when
term payoffs. spontaneous or real exchange on course been expectedly raucous. Re- son, went to Beijing a few weeks ago who gives as good as he gets, will be Ronald Reagan and Mikhail
matters of substance between two lations between the two powers, al- and held out the olive branch. a new challenge for them. Gorbachev had their rst summit
leaders. The official communiques ways a bit testy, have remained In a return to his original form, For Trump too, this is surely his in Geneva, they both came away
may often be the stuff that may tense as Trump began to bait China Trump has managed to raise tem- rst real and big foreign policy test. with the impression that it was pos-
OTHER VOICES want to make you snigger and roll right through his election cam- peratures by categorically holding His interactions with Angela Merkel sible to do business with each other,
on the oor with laughter for its paign. That by itself was nothing China responsible for both trade and Theresa May did not have any and that led to progress in arms re-
complete disconnect with current new as other candidates have taken decits as well as currency manipu- great expectations attached to duction talks and easing of the Cold
realities, but one is informed these the same route in the past rant lation. Besides he has also xed it them. They were allies in any case, War in the subsequent years.
protocols are essential rituals for against China on the campaign trail with paternal responsibility for the even if there were the occasional As Trump meets Xi, who will get
Theresa Mays world: trading on fantasy the occasion and apparently help and turn obsequious and deferen- misbehaviour of North Korea. In a quarrels, and there was hardly any the measure of whom? Who will
smoothen tensions and allow both tial around it once they take office. style more reminiscent of Holly- doubt about who called the shots. blink rst? The world waits with
The chancellor, Philip Hammond arrived in India on a mission sides to live and ght another day. For a short while it seemed as wood heroes such as Rambo or Ter- Now, he meets another world quivering anticipation. Interesting
to promote the nancial sector. The realities of British trade The upcoming summit meet though the script was taking a pre- minator, he has issued a dire warn- leader who is arguably his equal in days lie ahead.
are that this countrys dominant trading relationships remain
those with the EU-27. Only 1.7 per cent of British exports
currently go to India. As we leave Europe, we turn our backs on
countries with liberal and democratic values. This week, Mrs
May is trying to sell arms to Saudi Arabia. Mr Fox is,
meanwhile, offering our wares to Indonesia, the Philippines,
Malaysia and the Gulf states. LONDON 4 APRIL 2017 LET TERS TO THE EDITOR Send your letters by email to bleditor@thehindu.co.in or by post to Letters to the Editor, The Hindu Business Line, Kasturi Buildings, 859-860, Anna Salai, Chennai 600002.

A cosmetic solution The solution is cosmetic rather businesses severely? A business abroad.Why dont we remain as can defer payment of their dues or
With reference to the editorial, than a holistic measure to root out that ruins the health and welfare stoic then as we now are with re- pay them in nominal instalments .
Wrong solution (April 5), the Su- drunken driving. Educating of people would have to be short- gard to the Delhi outrage? The Court has set the wrong pre-
St Petersburg bombing preme Court has asserted that li- drivers about the ill-effects of lived. A good business is one that R Narayanan cedent. Any money earned or
quor trade is not a fundamental drinking and a mechanism to sells the goods to make people Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh spent is accountable.
We deplore the ghastly attack on a subway train in St check and punish the guilty is
right. Unfortunately, the more healthier. S Ramakrishnasayee
Petersburg that has claimed 14 innocent lives. The recent Ranipet, Tamil Nadu
well-intentioned programmes called for. The notion that clamp- Only the sale of liquor along A star is no more
attack in Russia has come hot on the heels of another senseless
and policies of government and ing down on roadside sales of li- highways has been banned. This is The demise of Prince, the star at-
attack in London last month. Importance has to be put on
judgments passed in the lower quor will control the problem is the least measure the court could traction of Bandipur Tiger Re- Right to recall
assimilating the Muslim populations, especially where people
courts are challenged more often ill-conceived. If you can stock up take for peoples welfare. serve, has saddened thousands all Varun Gandhis demand for the
of this faith belong to the minority. It has been witnessed that
than those really affecting the na- on food and water on long jour- S Lakshminarayayanan over the world. Prince was the right to recall peoples represent-
witch-hunt and alienation further breeds a sense of Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu
deprivation, which the terrorists use to rope in unsuspecting tion and society as a whole. The neys, you can also stock up on darling of wildlife enthusiasts and atives just like voting rights is an
Muslims. DHAKA 5 APRIL 2017 bona de intention of the apex liquor. the second most popular wild ti- urgent necessity, especially seeing
court to discourage drunken-driv- R Prabhu Raj Unfair and ugly ger in India, after Machli of how they misuse their privileges ,
ing is not appreciated. The hotel Bengaluru Under colonial rule ,a brown bar- Ranthambore. He helped the and rarely participate in debates
and liquor lobbies are more wor- rister from India went to South Bandipur Tiger Reserve get inter- concerning their people.
ried about their revenue loss. But While pronouncing the order to Africa, fought the cause of Indians national acclaim. It is unfortunate VS Ganeshan
A new level of depravity the Court has taken care of travel- ban the sale and registration of there and returned to ght for our that the majestic cat was neg- Bengaluru
lers. All hell would have broken vehicles that dont comply with BS- freedom. In the seven decades lected during his last days.
For a world that seems impervious to the horrors of Syrias
loose if total prohibition had been IV emission norms, the Supreme since,we seem to have become NJ Ravi Chander Erratum
civil war, the photos and videos from Tuesdays chemical
weapons attack bore witness to a new level of atrocity. ordered. In fact, too good roads Court observed that the health of whiter than men who ruled us for Bengaluru b With reference to Eyes on India
Although Assad doesnt control the entire country, he has rather than not-so-bad roads are the people is far, far more import- two centuries, even as Africans Power Corporation stake sale
effectively won the war against his opponents even as a more prone to causing accidents. ant than the commercial interest look shades darker in our eyes. Unacceptable verdict (April 4), the name of the seller
separate conict waged by the US and others against the IS Availability of liquor on the way of the automakers. Else how do we account for attacks The Madras High Court asking the was wrongly stated as India Power
continues. Now comes the Trump administration, which has tempts drivers. The same can be applied to the on them in the capital? Tamil Nadu government to waive Corporation. It should be Power
made clear that ousting Assad is not a priority and ghting IS KV Seetharamaiah banning of liquor shops. Is it right Strange that we think so differ- the cooperative loans of all farm- Trust, and not as published. The er-
takes precedence. NEW YORK 5 APRIL 2017 Hassan, Karnataka to say the ban will impact small ently when Indians are set upon ers is unacceptable. The farmers ror is regretted.

Published by N. Ram at Kasturi Buildings, 859 & 860, Anna Salai, Chennai-600002 on behalf of KASTURI & SONS LTD., and Printed by D. Rajkumar at Plot B-6 & B-7, CMDA Industrial Complex, Maraimalai Nagar, Chengleput Taluk, Kancheepuram Dist., Pin: 603209. Editor: Raghavan Srinivasan (Editor responsible for selection of news under the PRB Act). ISSN 0971 - 7528

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