RBI deputy governor Subir Gokarn has said that the only way to save the widening current account deficit—and hence the rupee—is to get Indians de-addicted from gold. Referring to it, your editorial “Curing Indians of gold” (FE, November 28) has welcomed RBI’s move for the launch of gold-backed instruments. It is one side of the coin. But we cannot ignore the consumer demand also. Today, ornamental gold sale is thriving and its advertisements are choking the media. Though ornamental gold might have helped people in some way by its ever-increasing value, for raising loans etc, the craze for gold ornaments is in a way also a curse for the Indian society. Besides many risks, it is also the source of dowry evil!
This refers to your editorial “King’s choice” (FE, November 24). I remember having seen Vijay Mallya defending capitalism in a NDTV show a few years ago. He said since he pays taxes, hence he is entitled to live the way he wants to. Some Leftists, such as CPI’s Atul Anjan, were challenging him to start a party called ‘Capitalist Party of India’ to see what support he would have for his views, as Mr Mallya derided the socialist principles in the show. That he is entitled to his extravagance is just fine. Yes, you may enjoy. But, taxes are one of the liabilities of a businessman. Paying workers their due is equally important. Environmental preservation is one of the new additions that capitalists the world over must be willing to take up. British Petroleum messed up a project off Gulf of Mexico—it has paid nearly $40 billion in fines. What was once a flagship company is now dependent on local oil explorers, Rosneft in Russia and Reliance in India, to undertake projects. Certainly, today, we would like to see people being decent on both sides of the aisle—both Leftists and Rightists. While we decry union leaders whiling away their time and encouraging their peers to laugh at a machine that breaks down, equally repulsive is the sight of a businessman who has not paid salaries to his staff and who is basking in indulgent quests. It is not always right to compare people but, for argument’s sake, let’s take the example of Ratan Tata—he is one of the richest persons in the world, yet he is modest. In fact, we revere him so much that, some