Yogi in politics, TN industries shift base and, how to end the Maharaja’s misery

Here is a list of stories you must read this weekend

GN Bureau | July 22, 2017


#India Post Payments Bank   #Tamil Nadu   #Air India   #Yogi Adityanath   #weekend  


Everyone in Yogi Adityanath's office declares that Yogi’s political career is founded on the work carried out from there, first when he was mahant of the influential temple, and then as an MP. Vijendra Singh, who works at the office, says “It’s because of these letters that Yogiji has now become the chief minister. Everyone who comes here gets these magical letters,” he says. “We do not delay the work and do it immediately – that too without any bribe.” And he adds for effect that Yogi never sought to become the chief minister but has been given that charge with full respect: “Koi manga thodi tha...bula ke diya gaya hai (He never asked for the post, it was given to him.)”
A look at the Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s long spell in politics, his hardline approach, and how he has fared in his post so far
 
 
A number of solutions have been suggested for Air India: privatisation, part-privatisation, outright sale, etc. I would like to suggest for Air India what Subramaniam Swamy has suggested for Kashmir – depopulation. Swamy’s solution would not work for Kashmir because the entire comity of nations would not allow Kashmir to be depopulated but we can easily give severance pay to all Air India employees and get rid of the whole contentious lot at a cost of a few hundred crore rupees. After “depopulation”, the assets of Air India can be put on sale.
 
 
Something is not right with the industry scene in the southern state. Factory owners are scrambling to pack their bags and move to other states, including neighbouring Andhra Pradesh (though there is no official estimate of their number). The Tamil Nadu government admits that it is unable to stop them.
 
 
“Rajiv Gandhi had a stronger majority than Modi has. But nobody was afraid of Rajiv Gandhi. Everybody would criticise him, and he would tolerate criticism. Modi does not have that kind of majority, but you have BJP and RSS in power and they’re vindictive in nature. One of the first tasks before Chandrashekhar [Azad] is to galavanise and unite all the dalits together,” says Prakash Ambedkar, leader, Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh and grandson of BR Ambedkar.
 
 
 
Many government functionaries believe that India Post Payments Bank will be a game-changer in bringing rural households under the formal banking system. “The postmen are from village communities. They are well-connected with other people in villages. With internet-enabled PoS [point of service] machines and smartphones, postmen could provide swift financial transactions,” says Anil Kumar, director, postal services, Ranchi division. The IPPB had inaugurated two of its branches as pilot on January 31; one in Ranchi and the other in Raipur. 
 
 

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