Saturday, July 11, 2020

Can We Depend on GDP Alone For Measuring Growth

The following is an excerpt from the book Hit Refresh by Satya Nadella.

Would you prefer to have $100,000 today or be a millionaire in 1920? Many would love to be a millionaire in the previous century, but your money then could not buy lifesaving penicillin, a phone call to family on the other side of the country, or many of the benefits of innovations we take for granted today.

Government should not have the goal of increasing GDP. It should try to improve the technology, business, freedom for the people, and make people lives more comfortable. With that, if GDP increases, it is fine. If not, that should not be a problem. Government should not do anything that increases GDP but reduces anything that impacts people.

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Ad by a state government on no Discrimination

Excerpt from an Ad by a state government, who files cases on people for their facebook posts.
No discrimination by caste and religion
50% Reservations to SC, ST, BC and Minorities
The above two lines are one below another in the ad (and not in different pages). Somebody, please explain them the meaning of "No discrimination by caste and religion".

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Business by Govt vs Private

Indian government filed cases against Telecom companies like Vodafone, Airtel and Jio saying, they have to pay tens of thousands of crores as dues. When the same rules are applied to few other companies (called as Public Sector Undertaking) like Power Grid Coporation, GAIL India and Oil India etc., the dues would cross one lakh crore. But, those companies don't need to pay.

For those, who say that, the original case was related to Telecom companies, the other companies also bought spectrum and the exact same rules can be applied. If it is unfair for the PSU companies, it should be unfair to Vodafone, Airtel and Jio as well. 

Of course, if government wants to change the rule, it would change to something like, if the revenue from X business is more than Y% of the company, then this rule is applied, and they carefully choose X and Y, in such a way that, the companies that they want to target would fall in that category. 

I don't see BSNL in the list. Does it mean, BSNL paid all the taxes and fees as per the rules set by the Govt, just like it set to any other private telecom company? If it had really paid the taxes and fees as per the rules, what is the overall profit (or loss) of BSNL? If it is in losses, does it mean, a common man has to pay the tax/fee because of the mismanagement of the company? 

All the state governments run the buses. If any private player wants to run a bus, first they have to get a permit. The permit amount is pretty huge. Apart from paying the permit amount, they need to get the approval from the concerned minister/official. That permission would cost them a lot unofficially. Government run buses won't pay any permit fees whatsoever and obviously, they don't need to pay any amount unofficially. But, the private bus operators have to fight with the government run buses on the fare. On peak days, when the private bus operators increase the fare, we would crticize them for exploiting. 

Air India is in losses. Still common man is paying for the losses of running Air India. If the same thing happens to private operators, the company would be closed down, like King Fisher or Jet Airways. Only the shareholders of the company would lose and not the common man. 

The profit and losses are calculated differently for government and private companies (May be except in the sectors that are reformed like Coal etc.). When the government industry is trying to get something out of the natural resources, the revenue minus the expenditure is considered as profit. Whereas, for the private industry, one has to deduct the license fee to extract the natural resources, which is typically more than all other expenditures. When that government industry is in Profits (on books), the employees would fight for increase in the salaries, bonus etc., saying it is in profits. Many times, the profit that they say the got is far less than the license fee they would have got, had they given to a private player in fair means. 

Everyone says, Private companies are exploiting. But, in reality, Government is exploiting private sector and trying to show as if the private companies are demons. 

Eventhough India got partial Independence in 1991 (No. It did not get it in 1947), still Government is trying to reduce the freedom of the companies with something or other.

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Banning Chinese Products

These days, I am seeing people destroying Chinese products in the news.
If they are destroying something that is not working or if they are doing for some publicity, then I don't have any comments.
Otherwise, only the person who owns that product is at loss and nobody else.
If you don't like China, then you may not achieve anything by blindly banning Chinese products. If you are planning to buy some product, and for the quality that you are expecting, if a Chinese product is cheaper than other product, then buy the Chinese product. Whatever the money that you saved by that, donate it to any person/organization/entity/government that you think would make India better than China. If a Chinese product is more expensive than the other product, there is no point in buying Chinese product.
If China is selling weapons, there is nothing wrong in buying weapons from China and fighting with them by using the same weapons. In the same way, if we are getting some advantage by transacting with China, transact with China, and use the advantage against China (if you don't like China).

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Airtel Support - The most efficient support system in the world

Airtel is the one which has the most efficient support system in the entire world. [If you have not got it, it was a sarcastic comment.]

There was no way I can raise a complaint with Airtel DTH. Calling customer care says, install Airtel Thanks App. In Airtel Thanks app, there is no way to raise a complaint. They don't respond to mails.

The highlight is the IVR feedback system. In any IVR feedback, I typically hear two types of feedback.

First type is, press 1, if your problem is resolved, and press 2, if your problem is not resolved.

Other type is, press between 1 to 5, based on your level of satisfaction with this issue, where 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest.

Even if the numbers vary, these are the two different options that I see in most of the IVR feedback options.

Airtel is having third type of feedback system.
Press 1, if your problem is resolved.
If you are unable to do A, B, C, Please do X, Y, Z. Press 2.

Hats off to Airtel for having such a brilliant feedback mechanism.