And for a Friday arriving in Trivandrum on Bandh day, some thoughts….. some musings…..
Kerala Govt led by a Communist Chief Minister is soliciting investment and Economy Growth with the avowed objective of eliminating Unemployment and guaranteeing jobs to the Kerala Youth – an absolute Noble objective. I fully support ASCEND 2020. If India has to be a Private sector led 5 Trillion Economy, as the target set by the PM, then Kerala with its high Social living Standards and successful socio-economic parameters, largely based on “Remittance Economy”, must attract Investors, not only from India but abroad too. Communist Kerala has announced wage subsidy for new industries, labour reforms to allow women to work night shifts, land reforms by removing the current ceiling of 15 acres land and allowing acquisition of larger parcels for bigger investments etc. etc.
All these high level Bureaucrats/Politicians led “Investments Meets”, must be coupled with “Ground level” attitudinal support and long term sustainable Policies. Reducing Unemployment and eradication of Poverty must be an all Kerala Goal, not of one or the other party in Power at any given date. Strikes, Bandhs, Intimidations, Red flag Morchas, manhandling Company owners, blocking a Nobel Laureate who is a State Guest – his quote “Felt as if A Bandit has stopped at Gun Point” – Shameful!!! These will not help change Kerala’s poor investment image. We must all cooperate across political, social and Economic differences. Imagine – How I wished – on arrival at Trivandrum airport on Bandh day, if there was a “All Party” Help Desk to take me and other foreigners and visitors to our Destinations!!!! Getting Investments in these competitive times cannot be by Government Circulars and Investment Melas.
Let us all support Growth, investments and let each State compete positively with other states. Kerala need not have a Manufacturing Model like Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra or Gujarat, but a high Services sector, Industry 4.0, AI based, leveraging its strong Educated and literate population, fabulous landscape, assured South West and North East monsoons and its huge Non Resident Keralite supporters. Let’s build a Prosperous Kerala and enable a Developed India, the legal way, the Smart way, the SEEGOS way.