Big ideas in brief: C. Balagopal answers the question. Do we need more Government in India?

C. Balagopal, Chairman of Anaha Trust, Founder and former CEO of Terumo Pempol

Do we need more Government in India? Tell us what you think by clicking on the comments link at the bottom of this page?

C. Balagopal writing in “Destination Kerala says, "Definitely yes!” 

The logic he presents supporting more and better government is in this writer's view, lucid and reasoned. It follows below:

1. The fact that we have had a bad experience on account of poor management or too many low-level employees in government should not blind us to the fact that we don’t have enough people who are technically qualified or trained. Vested interests in government organizations such as a bloated unionized workforce or venal political leadership should not blind us to the vital role that government must play in making India a world power that offers its citizens public peace, a healthy environment and efficient/ safe transport system.
2. In Western nations, the experimental privatization of public services such as utilities, prisons etc often results in higher costs which the public may not be willing to pay. The assumption that you have-to privatize to achieve efficiency is false. In any situation the enterprise needs to be well managed but private enterprise is usually not willing to underwrite the cost that sound human values or uneconomical gestation costs will require.
3. Private industry (even in the West) cannot make the long-term investments that are needed to build scientific and technological infrastructure. In the west, the basic research is often done by the government. Later stage research could be done by universities often funded by government. Research teams who have worked with government and universities can later acquire the Intellectual Property Rights for the technology and spin off commercial enterprises that are able at this juncture to attract commercial funding. 

This is the tip of the iceberg that leads people to believe that research should be privatized. Privatization may work well in the last phase of an institution's development but what we need urgently is better managed, more qualified government.

Unlike most of us, C. Balagopal has actually worked in government as an IAS officer. His latest book tells the story of how Supplyco, an entity of the Kerala Government was able to stabilize food prices by purchasing grain and other commodities on the open market.

For a review of his eye opening book please click on the link below.

An economic thriller that reignites public faith in government


  1. Kattile maram thevarude ana. Look at Supply Co now. Wasting tax payers money to subsidise a section of middle class. Corruption all around. No Government institution has faced competition and survived in the long run. To maintain this bureaucracy taxes are getting raised time to time.

  2. The more powerful an instrument the greater its potential for good and bad. Government can be great force for good if managed properly. Take for example what the Delhi government is doing to improve schools. But yes, government institutions have to managed properly. Turning the task of controlling commodity prices cannot be turned over to a private company because a private company's primary responsibility is to make money for its shareholders.


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