“Uncertainty in India Inc is not a good sign”
Sachin Pilot, Union minister of state for corporate affairs, has reacted sharply to the recent FIR filed by CBI against Kumar Mangalam Birla in Coalgate. Excerpts from an interview with Special Correspondent KUMAR ANSHUMAN: Q. What do you think of the CBI FIR? A. The law of the land is applicable to individuals, be it a politician, a film star, a businessman or a bureaucrat. Wrongdoers have to be brought to justice. Having said that, attempts shouldn’t be made to create an atmosphere of uncertainty among stakeholders of economy. Accusations should be based on hard facts. Q. What are your concerns as corporate affairs minister? A. The main concern is that India should remain a bankable destination for foreign as well as domestic investment. We need to create more jobs, promote manufacturing, improve infrastructure, and for this, we need investments. If there is a sense of reluctance to do business, it is not a good sign. Q. Is there a danger that bureaucrats will hesitate in taking initiatives? A. Before formulating any policy, a bureaucrat takes into consideration the information available. Judiciary has the power to question the execution of the policy. If there is wrongdoing, the person should not be spared, but to question the policy itself is not fair. The right to make a policy should remain with the government. I’m not against the judiciary or other state agencies, but different stakeholders should work in collaboration, without interfering in each others’ domain. Q. What is the feedback from the industry? A. Industry associations have met me with their concerns. The country can grow only when both Government and the private sector work as partners. We have assured private players of all possible help from the Government. Their response has been encouraging and I hope things will get better. Q. What is the Government doing to restore the confidence of the industry? A. Transparency is one thing we are focusing on. For example, we are in the process of formulating rules of a new Companies Act. Out of 17 members in the panel to draft rules, 14 are from the private sector. This Act will be implemented by them, so they should participate in the policy-making process. Every detail is on the ministry website. It will be a policy owned by everyone and no one can question it. UPA has done a number of things to promote transparency such as RTI. You will see similar measures in all ministries.