TAKING OFF INTO THE BLUE YONDER!

TAKE-OFF INTO THE BLUE! TAPPING THE RURAL KERALA POTENTIAL: Take it from me that Rural Kerala has unexplored resources that the urban Kerala can’t even dream of! If you travel from the North to the…

Source: TAKING OFF INTO THE BLUE YONDER!

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TAKING OFF INTO THE BLUE YONDER!

TAKE-OFF INTO THE BLUE!
TAPPING THE RURAL KERALA POTENTIAL:
Take it from me that Rural Kerala has unexplored resources that the urban Kerala can’t even dream of!
If you travel from the North to the South of the sliver-shaped State you are going to tickle your taste buds with not only new tastes but also chance upon unique ethnic items made nowhere else in the whole world!

Forget the hookahs made in Quilandy and exported to the Arabian Gulf to please the Sheikhs, but what about the grass mats made in Chittur, the drums made in Polpully and Kodumbu, or the coffee shrub root art items in Ponkunnam?
Tapping the potential of rural Kerala doesn’t mean only having 10 helipads to promote domestic tourism at places such as Guruvayur, Palakkad or Munnar but tapping the native talents of the people in every District.
For instance some fishermen in Vaikom know how to prepare a long lasting pickle from freshwater fish including ethnic fish varieties, not accessible elsewhere in the world.

I recall Canadian Salmon Pickle available not only near the North Canadian streams but also in many cities. A few families in Ramassery village near Palakkad know the secret ingredients of Ramassery Idli, that doesn’t go moldy for a week or longer!

Or go for Veppilakatti of Nurani Brahmin agraharams, Palakkad! Or take the mussel-embedded dosa and idli items in Mahe!
These need to be promoted and commercialized on a vast scale at least within the state.
This far there has been no mechanism to do research on such items for one thing , the key contacts , the experts in the field and also how to promote them item by item globally in those areas and regions where they can be but dreamed of.
Like the Sardar menfolk and those Tibetans traveling the Indian subcontinent in search of locations where there is winter so that they can make a killing by selling their wives’ laboriously knitted woolen ware!
(Information accessed in part from PARI or http://www.ruralindiaonline.org)
PROMOTION OF CITIZEN SAVINGS HABIT:
Both China and India practically escaped having to bear the brunt of the US-induced recession during 2008-2009 in the light of their own domestic savings habits—Chinese economy got overheated as a result too—and this year we have to look for global recession friendly factors already visible on the horizon..
Though the 7th Pay Commission award of higher salaries and pensions will lead to feel good factor, the 3-4% of GDP fiscal deficit continues to spring a nasty surprise. Inflation is tremulous and refusing to go below 4.5%.Unpopular reforms are being pushed ahead. The return of the NRIs is a huge challenge.
The CAG reports that during 2014-2015 the fiscal management across the country and probably in Kerala too (?) has been better than in the previous year but then I have serious doubts about the ROI (Return on Investment) of many such investments promised and probably made during the last year when I take into consideration the deeply entrenched negative factors that are pitted against progress and forward movement of any kind.
E.g. Official apathy in implementation, lack of responsible accounting, over politicization of issues, more-talk-than- work approach to lifestyle, over-dependence on NRI inflow, lack of focus, too many work interruptions, addiction to comfort and coziness at any cost etc.
The world economy is so hard to predict.
A global recession, triggered primarily by the plummeting fall in oil prices from as high as $ 100 a barrel to as low as $ 29 today for Brent Sweet variety, is certainly visible on the horizon. Russia and Brazil have reported negative growth. China’s economy—mind you we are an emerging economy among many others in China’s neighborhood! — is grinding to an all-time low in GDP growth@ 6.3%!
All these affect India as a whole, though her GDP growth is reportedly set to grow at 7.3%!
Within India monsoons have played hide-and-seek with us for over 2 consecutive years now with disastrous impact on peasants. Manufacturing sector has been an unimpressive performer. Micro and small industrial units have been facing crisis after crisis. Exports have fallen over the last 12 months—a fall that has been continuing from 2008 onwards this far.

Employment generation has been at bullock cart pace. Markets remain glutted with Chinese goods dumped at our ports. Domestic private investors have developed cold feet today in the light of their getting into debts through un-utilized capacities.
Only the services sector remains robust!
It’s judicious that we in Kerala remain properly prepared for the blow of recession well in advance.
India as a whole– and Kerala in particular because our resources to subsist on our own are few—must start insulating herself by ramping up public investment and thus unleashing domestic demand.
A Zero Subsidy lifestyle is the one that is officially accepted, which tends to make daily life a bit more difficult than earlier.
A PEP PILL FOR THE FARMING SECTOR:
An amount of Rs 750 crores has been announced for strengthening the farm front. Vegetable production front needs to be popularized first to offset the TN inflow of “poisoned” veggies. The general picture is re assuring if not wholly cheering.
This needs the co-operation of all agriculture colleges and universities in the State in guiding farmers and those interested in farming to better and more rewarding practices. A mass survey needs to be undertaken of the surplus land available even in private plots and holdings for farming on a small scale.
Rubber farming can be undertaken by families and the rubber used for industries. But a lot of research into new uses for rubber needs to be got done at the earliest.
We can no longer expect to export this item today in the prevailing circumstances. Helping out the sector with subsidies—Rs 500 crores has been announced– is strictly a short-term interim-relief measure.
TONING UP THE KSRTC AND LIABILITY SCHOOLS:
This issue I think I shall take up later in a detailed blog. Anyway it’s reported that as many as 5573 schools in Kerala are grossly uneconomic burden on the Treasury and that 30% or more of the KSRTC services perform poorly too.
Kerala economy can’t afford, in the prevailing situation, to have these many sluices in it. So something needs to be done about them.
All the children in these schools can be merged into neighboring schools and KSRTC needs to be e helped to improve its route determination procedure.
MITIGATING THE UNEMPLOYMENT RATES:
Mr Jayan Jose Thomas says in a recent write-up in “The Hindu” that on the basis of a study he made of the employment growth potential during 2004-2005, 2011-2012—on the basis of growth in the working age population, –, at least 15 million new jobs could have come up during those years annually but that actually far fewer jobs did. These periods were supposedly marked by exceptionally fast economic national growth!
There is no English word, as far as I have checked, for the antonym of employment-worthiness. But this unworthiness for employment is the bane of modern higher education at tertiary level here. A host of factors can be cited by way of etiology of course but that alone doesn’t help much.
The result has been massive unemployment, the hidden villain behind much lawlessness played out on our roads and in townships.
Thus the snippet “Kerala tops in unemployment rates” at 7.5% according to Economic Review doesn’t shock us, even when we are told that the national average is just 2. 3% except in Tripura and Nagaland where the root cause is sheer unwillingness to do a job!
Ironically it’s our young women that remain largely employed in relation to menfolk –a phenomenon named “feminization of joblessness”. In Rural India this is as high as 21.7% among women but it’s still higher at 47.4% in Kerala (cf. 9.7% for men)
With jobs in the organized sector getting scarcer—from 12.26 lakhs to 11.3 lakhs over the 2000-2013 period— (and the unorganized sector inviting),it seems that our young people choose to remain at home except possibly in Ernakulam District!
Contrast this with the Rs 17500 crores, the migrant workers living among us and hailing from Jharkhand, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Bihar etc. send home every year!
Couldn’t our own youth earn this? Has the bane been that they became educated in colleges?
The agri-front is also in the blues what with farm gate prices being on the low side and the proliferation of middlemen. So dependence on the agriculture is no longer reliable. Employment in community, social and personal services increased a bit from 44.7% to 50.43%. Self-employed workers are at 37.7% of the total workforce of course but this is not optimistic enough.
Altogether the picture is nothing but a chiaroscuro.
Employment Exchange registrations –hovering in the 45 lakh range–are a good clue to what is really wrong. The full number of our educated but unemployed youth, once we factor in those that never go to an Employment Exchange for their own reasons, may be in the 60-laksh range, actually one fifth of the total population of the State.
This throws a grim prognosis of a highly destabilized community and society at large!
THE DROP-OUT YOUTH ISSUE:
I can take this up later in a separate blog I think since it needs a lot of explanation!
Our aim is two-fold here:
(a) To persuade and also organize our drop out youth towards taking up manual labor of some kind on the lines of MGNREGA and also
(b) To gradually take steps to prevent the need for migrant labor from other States.(This needs higher intake of learners in both Polytechnics and it is too)
CONCLUSION:
This far what I have been concerned with is the actual information on the State Budget that is available through the media. Thank you, this exercise has taught me many lessons on not only the CM but also on the priorities given by him based on the recommendations of various departments!
My humble suggestion in regard to the CM, gentleman that he is, is that he –like Mr. Modi, the PM–badly needs the support of a wholly non-political Brains Trust or Think Tank team to sift the se recommendations that come up and jettison in time those that bode no good to the State in the coming years! (And please ask them to be updated on the tools for enhancing professional effectiveness)
And the CM MUST be far tougher than now in throwing out the excess burden on the Treasury. No boat can hope to sail without catapulting in choppy waters and cross waves of a Sea of Galilee in storm—until and unless much junk weight is jettisoned mercilessly!
Bye!

ON THE 40-250 KMPH TAKE-OFF RUN!!

40–250 KMPH RUN FOR TAKE-OFF! (PART III)
The State budget presented recently with good intentions has already been dubbed as an “Election Budget”!
“The one thing our CM must stop doing immediately, if he can, but certainly at the earliest, is not give the media full information about what his Ministry intends to translate into reality for the people. This is because I wish him well. I have seen the vested interests and the political forces ranged his ministry sort of take up arms after reading the day’s newspaper and also heard them making unworthy comments!” said a good friend of mine—a retired SBT bank manager-when I met him yesterday.
He was returned from Dubai and had seen and heard the NRIs behave like this perhaps .If so it is probably true here as well.
I shall go through what needs to be done urgently by the present ministry either before they disperse for elections or even earlier if they can in relation to each issue here.
Please note that this is a continuation of Part II.
PLUGGING THE TAX DRAIN PIPES:
India’s CAGs have always done justice to the people by making revelations often shaking political hornet hives. The shenanigan committed by the Commercial Taxes Department during 2014-2015 total up to Rs 1771 crores, and this must be plugged immediately.
This came about in the wake of turnover escaping assessment, grant of irregular exemptions and application of incorrect tax rates.
Out of 13.41lakh dealers/traders, only 2.20 lakh traders have been registered with VAT. Online business activity within the State got left out, resulting in a loss of Rs 174.3 crores. The receipts under sales tax ought to have been more than the budget estimates in motor vehicles, rubber, petroleum products and IMFL, and gold but they were less than expected. Rural Water supply –Jalanidhi- ought to have been revived but it was not.
(Reasons: Insincerity in one’s routine job, habitual neglect, indifference, irresponsibility and partisanship. Possibly bribes too! A unionized worker is less sincere and more agitation-susceptible than a fresh one because of his conviction that his union will protect him if he is indifferent.)
Please note that all these can be found in all public offices across the State-even in the Govt. Secretariat! Working for salary alone—and not with personal involvement and commitment to the sheer nobility of what one is doing- doesn’t help the State in any manner. This CM is not responsible for that approach of course but he’s the right person to rectify it. Forthwith!
HEALTH INSURANCE CESS INITIATIVE:
Less than 33% of treatment expenses in a patient’s case comes from the State exchequer in public hospitals. Why not make it 50:50 for a start please?
One finding has been that “out of pocket” expenses –by the citizenry- amount to as high as 86% in the country; this is what makes treatment at private hospitals unaffordable for you or me!
They generate profit for themselves through a ‘services sale’ transaction only. This means that their overall commitment to the society they are in is practically minimal if not zero.
Health services-wise Kerala leads the nation on many fronts, thank Jesus, but then a large percentage among us are not health-conscious or active enough no matter their age or physical condition. Health infrastructure alone is not enough; average lifestyle and activity levels also need minor modifications.
Out of the around 4% of the GDP spent on health across India, only 1% is contributed by the public sector; in Kerala also the picture may be similar. This ratio needs to be improved on a PPP platform simply because more diseases need our attention and more beds are needed too to take care of the ill!
Medical Tourism—in which sector India has strong competitors in Thailand, Brazil, Singapore and South Korea and Philippines– needs to be aggressively marketed across the state and globally as a low cost destination. For your information India’s healthcare costs are one tenth of that in the US, one fifth of that in Singapore and of third of that in Thailand!
(Across India the $ 73.9 billion worth of health expenses is slated to rise to $ 280 billion by 2020!)Many ancillary industries also stand to benefit through higher PP investment in this sector.
A Womb-to-Tomb health insurance scheme like in Scandinavian countries—which require only a small annual premium in return for minimal expense treatment all through life– may also be initiated here for all Malayalis!
A nominal Health Insurance Cess of Rs 3 to Rs 10 –levied along with the sale of tobacco items or booze-may be warranted. This can be earmarked for improving the facilities in hospitals.
INCENTIVIZING BLOG PROMOTION EFFORTS:
Certainly this is a good idea.
But the bloggers need to be given individual subject areas to focus on—e.g. farm sector, small enterprises sector, automotive sector, school sector etc.–and helped by sponsors to prepare themselves with personal visits.
FB is an already crowded area for promoting an event beyond a limit since it’s basically conceived only as an interactive site. It gets visited for personal reach-out reasons only too mostly.
So other sites may have to be made use for marketing the State in all its variety and glory to the West. And the West alone is where there are persons interested enough to come over and DO something about making our own State dreams a reality!
Even the Arabian Gulf is no longer promising enough when it comes to investment, partly owing to the global fall in Gulf oil demand in the wake of shale oil discovery and development, and current prices.
PRE-EMPTING NON-STARTER VENTURES:
Brainwaves for starting a business activity of one’s own are OK so long as an ambiance congenial to making them a reality also exists. Kerala does have a gap here. Realizing the growth potential in Kerala is not that difficult if we set in motion the right mechanisms.
You shall be happy to hear that, against a decline of 65% in investment proposals across India, Kerala saw a growth of 315% in business proposals during the 2012-2015 span. Unfortunately funds crunch—partly caused by the banks’ reluctance to lend and partly due to family income constraints — is keeping >54% of these proposals on paper even today according to an ASSOCHAM study.
Investment proposals made during the last three years distinctly prove that they are mostly in the services sector—54.5%– and predominantly in the financial services area. Manufacturing accounts for 27.5%, real estate/construction for 8% and power generation for 7.5%.
What is at stake is an industrial enterprises memorandum worth as much as Rs 17600 crore if not also a great expansion opportunity!
Please add the investment in the farming and poultry development sectors to this. A lot of in-sector quality enhancement also needs to come in a big way.
For instance duck-rearing is profitable even at individual family unit level if there is a mechanism for giving periodic immunizations against known illnesses to the birds. A typical family may have space for rearing under 10birds at times. But here there is none if the number of birds is below 50 and so I gave it up. Sensitization of the latest drugs, tonics, capsules to be given to the birds or proven techniques is also severely lacking.
THE DIRE NEED FOR A STATE MARKETING MECHANISM:
Marketing such proposals to potential investors—angel or corporate–, which needs to go along a parallel track to help out such entrepreneurs, is also necessary. Of course physical infrastructure such as roads, and availability of water and power needs a vast improvement MSME sector also needs individual attention in the initial stages to take off on their own.
This pre-approval marketing effort, which also shall assure the inventor of the funds, would need the deadline for submission of investment proposals to be at least 6 months before they get formally approved and feasible.
Just think of a corporate sponsor willing to finance the whole project or brainwave of a young man or woman! The State must urgently have a marketing mechanism in place to market itself as a destination!
It’s not money that is unavailable here but the need for personal conviction on the part of the financial sponsor.
I had some stint of trying to marketing a charitable set like this earlier, but found that the organization was not worth the effort because of lack of transparency at the top. Right now I am fund sourcer for another NGO here for the mentally retarded but that seems to find many takers abroad.
Many more activities need to be done towards helping the State.
SPC (Student Police Cadet) Scheme has yielded good results. So a training center for them is welcome.
The snippet “1974 rape cases in State last year” suggests the dire need to have in place a quite well motivated police force on the one hand and also a need to train our girls in self-defense techniques at the local school and college level.
“Interest subvention of Rs 235.41 crores for education loans” indicates the effort to whitewash a basic government unwillingness to sensitize the youth beneficiaries of the need to repay to the bank what he has received.
NO loan beneficiary under high Heaven has any divine right to be a defaulter to a fund giving institution once he gets employed. He MUST pay back. And banks don’t exist to play Mother Teresa roles too. So neither principal amount nor any interest need to be written off in a gracious gesture!
Port development at Thangassery, Ponnani, Kodungalloor, Beypore, Azheekal, Vizhinjam and Kozhikode @ Rs 76.5 crore expense is certainly good for the State.
Funding for ASAP to the tune of Rs 234 crores is also welcome since it is helping in some manner the educated unemployed here.
A Biopark at Thamarassery is also OK.
Elevating a college unilaterally —there is a proposal to do so- to a Digital College, whatever that is, needs a total mindset change for which the students and faculty may not be willing enough for undergoing that drastic change for the better towards higher individual competence!
At one of the colleges, right here I found many teachers keeping PCs well covered in plastic on their tables for show and going to their classes as usual as if they didn’t need them.
One of them even told me, ”Not that we needed this here. I don’t use it. The Government insisted and so it’s here on my table taking up space!”
Convinced, eh?
What I heard recently at the Maramon Convention was about ha alarming pollution both outside ourselves and also within the human mind.
If all of us-you and I included- take a pledge not to let ourselves give in to such pollution in any manner whatsoever, we have ways and means at our disposal in addition to the needed drive to take this State forward to heights not dreamt till now!
These lines from Matthew Arnold’s “Dover Beach” come to my mind whenever I take up the day’s print media or switch on the TV:
Ah, love, let us be true
To one another, for the world, which seems
To lie before us like a land of dreams,
So various, so beautiful, so new,
Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light,
Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain;
And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.

[Dover Beach by Matthew Arnold]
Indeed in all truth, to the best of my knowledge and observation this far in life, what distracts you and me rather too much to our liking from our genuine focus in life is none other than the impertinent intrusion of local politics through the print and channel media available found the clock.
The public domain media here also needs to be made aware of their need to orient the people towards their real needs and not to politics more than needed.

PICKING UP VELOCITY FOR TAKE-OFF!

Kuttanlifeissues

PICKING UP SPEED BEFORE TAKE-OFF! (Part II)
This is a different labor
This arriving at a non-place and hoping for an occasional strike
Of words thick and dark
Like diamond goddesses in the making” [K. Srilata: “Bookmarking the Oasis”]
I don’t believe in Kali Yuga or any such gossamer notion and also believe that EVERY problem has a solution within itself. So let me dilate to you my suggestions about enabling our home State to pick up speed enough to take off, no matter the sudden direction changes of policy from New Delhi!
Driven by the imminent elections and pressured by the national scenario prevailing within the nation, with the ruling party on an aggressive if not also arrogant drive, the Kerala CM has made a spate of announcements of the many beneficial initiatives he has in his mind, and which we hopes to implement and translate into…

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PICKING UP VELOCITY FOR TAKE-OFF!

PICKING UP SPEED BEFORE TAKE-OFF! (Part II)
This is a different labor
This arriving at a non-place and hoping for an occasional strike
Of words thick and dark
Like diamond goddesses in the making” [K. Srilata: “Bookmarking the Oasis”]
I don’t believe in Kali Yuga or any such gossamer notion and also believe that EVERY problem has a solution within itself. So let me dilate to you my suggestions about enabling our home State to pick up speed enough to take off, no matter the sudden direction changes of policy from New Delhi!
Driven by the imminent elections and pressured by the national scenario prevailing within the nation, with the ruling party on an aggressive if not also arrogant drive, the Kerala CM has made a spate of announcements of the many beneficial initiatives he has in his mind, and which we hopes to implement and translate into reality if he is given the mandate to rule for another term.
Take a look at the KSIDC advertisement in this connection please: Standard Design Factory at Industrial Growth Centre, Kinalur , Kozhikode, and at Light Engineering Park Palakkad; Life sciences Park Trivandrum, Early Bird Scheme, Business Space for Women at Angamali, and Business Incubation Facility also at Angamali.
Dumbfounded, eh? Don’t be please for whether all these shall take off as expected at this juncture remains to be seen.

Read on!
Looking at all these announcements launched with a broad smile, I feel in all honesty and without in the least underestimating his inner vision and caliber, that he has yet to think in depth about many of them from a feasibility angle in our State.

The crux is NOT in the announcement of a scheme, a project or an initiative –more than a thousand such have b en announced in the last 67 years–but in the implementation of the same with 100% earnestness and social commitment to a Greater Kerala!
If India as a whole has not come up with globally expected results development wise, it’s because of this basic official level insincerity and accompanying cupidity to make some money on the side through a dishonest deal, a purposeful picking of one specific tender or a sub contract.
The Congress-led ministries both coalition and otherwise –and also NDA ministries whenever they accessed power–have grievously failed in this aspect. The Devil is not only in the fine printed textual clauses, provisions and conditions of a scheme or a contract document –as made out by some clerical cog in the circumlocutous administrative machinery–but also in the interpretation given to many of them by the officials at the subordinate implementation level.
I would request the CM to first get this bitter realization into his system; after all God extended to him a fine opportunity to know the real character of many persons associated with him till recently in various guises!(The TN CM scores higher on this point!)
THE NEED FOR ANNUAL JOB REVIEWS:
Speaking of public servants in the State and also on the basis of what I have observed this far, I must say that the Annual Job Reviews done on every employee needs to be got done by a dispassionate third party evaluator, through outsourcing the task. That alone shall and can give the employer—the State Government–real picture of the level of incompetence thriving and persisting within the workforce.
What we do on this basis—warning, demotion, retrenchment, relocation to a distance, or suspension– is to remain de-linked from this review. Be assured that no Union need be consulted here since the sole employer is the Government and since its decision can be final and binding.
THE PREREQUISITE CIVIC MINDSET CHANGE!
Modi Ministry has announced the forced development-cum-transformation of 20 Indian cities into Smart Cities. This phrase sounds good but this is going to bode no good so long as the individual Indian citizen’s mindset –at least in these select cities- has not changed drastically. It speaks glowingly (though not with a sense of realism) about the “investment friendliness” of these select locations. State-of-the-art technology is to be the Open Sesame to obtaining greater office efficiency and individual competence.
Not only must you and I unlearn our lifestyles led this far in company with unhygienic practices but also orient our mentalities towards efficiency and speed in getting things done.
Nay, it will be a difficult proposition going by the existing federal structure, Union-State divide of subjects, dominant occupational structure, deficiency of skilled workforce, pervasive corruption linked to land and property development and unceasing migration of villagers to cities, and the Laodicean pace of legislation.
This is what I meant by saying in Part I of this blog series that the Union Ministry is fast getting to a Catch 22 situation by announcing smart Cities prematurely!
Please note that I shall be taking up for analysis each scheme announced for us here in Kerala before I do so at the Union Budget level!
LONG TERM LEAVE vs. RISING UNEMPLOYMENT OF YOUTH
What needs to be taken up and finished on a war footing today is prepping ourselves to face a veritable tsunami of unemployed but educated youth living among us. On top priority must the curriculum revision be taken up and job market be probed in some detail for the skills required to increase employment worthiness of the young graduates and post graduates.
When a College teacher avails himself or herself of long term leave, now permissible up to a maximum of 20 years at a stretch, the Department is constrained to shift a lot of gears so as to maintain some semblance of normalcy in educational institutions.
Not only is a Guest Lecturer to be posted immediately in the same subject so that here is no break in teaching, but also the remuneration due to him/her to be claimed from the UGC forthwith.

No guest lecturer can be retained for 20 years at a stretch and so annually new interviews may have to be conducted to do minimum justice to the learners at the receiving end.
The minimal level of social commitment of the man that went on leave can be guessed too but nothing can be done about it. From 20 the span of time may have to be cut down to say 10 years or even 5 years.
Forget those that are parasitical on the NRI financial inflow, trickling to a dead end as they happen to be! The remainder-almost 40 lakhs at the last count- need to be put in suitable slots at the earliest if we are not to have law and order issues—including suicides– on our roads and in our homes.
TRICKLE-DOWN DIGITAL LITERACY TRANSFER PROGRAM:
The intention behind the Statewide Digital Empowerment Campaign is to bridge the digital divide and maximize the efficiency of the people through ICT (Information and Communication Technology) in day to day life.
The implementing agency during Phase One is the Student Police Cadet Force from 280 schools in all 14 districts. Phase Two shall make use of NCC cadets.
5600 tablets are to be made available to the cadets for use. And the whole program can be monitored remotely too.
The scheme is expected to help 3 million persons—9 % of the total population– within the State. At least one member of each family in the catchment area within a total radium of 3 kms shall be given the training to use PCs effortlessly.
Much money has gone—from private individuals and the government– into this investment.

Anyway mobile penetration is high. Internet subscription base is broad too. Optic fiber network coverage is also OK. Both e-governance initiatives and e-commerce have taken off.
Many presumptions (I can’t call them assumptions anyway) are behind this. It’s for instance presumed that >50% of the State’s population’s population between 30 and 60 have been empowered already through Akshaya Centers.
How far is this true please?
To what extent is Kerala a Digital State?
What about the general mindset of the people regarding this new step towards business efficiency? Have we accepted this mindset conscientiously please?
Please know that what we are seeking to do now in 2016 is what the West did 20 years ago!

A RAINBOW OF OPPORTUNISTIC LIES!

WHITE LIES! BLACK LIES! EGREGIOUS LIES! STATISTICAL LIES!

Indian banks are being piggybacked by at least a dozen challenges at the moment!
“The Indian banking system”, writes the Hindu editor,” is in crisis at the moment with bank after bank, especially the government owned ones reporting hefty losses in the face of mounting bad loans. The RBI’s ordained clean up notwithstanding, the banking system desperately needs to be pulled away from the legacy elements that have played havoc for long.
Absolutely true! EVERY bank in India shall pull a long face if you mention “NPA”!
Said Arun Jaitley recently, totally denying all instances of government interference,
“The government is committed to zero interference and letting the institutions run professionally. And the boards of the banks have to be run professionally “
He felt that the government couldn’t pull out of the banking system altogether too because in his eye state owned banks have played an important role in reaching out to areas where there was no banking.
Another black lie characteristic of politicians in the country because the banking system remains out of bounds for far too many underprivileged sections, say, migrant labor class in Kerala! To this day they send one man with all their surpp0lus earning to their own villages in Jharkhand, or Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, UP or Bihar!
The government is, despite the disinvestment move announced, having a conflict of interest here in having poked its nose into the banking system, obviously for the advantages it expects from the latter.
History is replete with instances of subtle or not so subtle interference by the government within the banking system, resulting in decisions based on purely partisan, populist or simply expedient short term considerations!
To absolve himself of the lies he told the bankers during the Make in India week in Mumbai, Mr. Jaitley shall have , for starters, to reconfigure the government’s financial stake in the banking industry as of this date, say by ring-fencing the government’s equity stakes in banks by transferring its shares to an independent professionally managed holding company!
Today we have an integrated global environment .So financial decision-making has become a very complex process involving quite dynamic imponderables. This takes a huge toll on all our bank managements at the moment.
Will Mr. Jaitley DO something to help banks function without any external interference?
This is a moot point and remains a million-dollar imponderable per se if not also an unmentionable in Modi’s India!
Ha-ha!