India Inc Gets Nice Words, If Not Much Help

by R Jagannathan - Jul 5, 2019 07:17 PM +05:30 IST
India Inc Gets Nice Words, If Not Much HelpFinance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presenting the Union Budget in Parliament. (Twitter)
Snapshot
  • Hopefully, the period of disenchantment for business is over. The budget may not have given them much, but sometimes words of trust can make a world of difference.

The 2019-20 Budget has little to cheer India Inc, barring the big numbers bandied about in terms of infrastructure investments. However, in her own way, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has told businesses that Modi 2.0 does not want to leave the impression that it is anti-business, even if tax compliance and anti-corruption are its running themes.

Business leaders, who enthusiastically backed Narendra Modi in 2014 on the basis of his accessibility and support for investment, were shocked when they found the Prime Minister distancing himself from them after the elections.

While one can only speculate that Modi did not want to be stuck with the image of heading a ‘Suit-boot-ki-Sarkar’, clearly business found itself locked out of the corridors of power almost till the end of the first term.

But the Finance Minister obviously does not want to let this distance and distrust to fester. In her Budget speech, she made a pointed reference to legitimate profits and trust.

She said: "we do not look down upon legitimate profit-earning. Gone are the days of policy paralysis and licence-quota-control regimes. India Inc are India’s job-creators. They are the nation’s wealth-creators. Together, with mutual trust, we can gain, catalyse fast and attain sustained national growth. I wish to propose a number of initiatives as part of a framework for kick-starting the virtuous cycle of domestic and foreign investments."

Hopefully, the period of disenchantment for business is over. The budget may not have given them much, but sometimes words of trust can make a world of difference.

Jagannathan is Editorial Director, Swarajya. He tweets at @TheJaggi.
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