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Solitary Apologist

Speculation is intense about the impending political shake-up. There are only three weeks to go before Indira Gandhi leaves on her South American tour Of course, there are those who maintain that only a fundamental change in the direction of achieving coherence in leadership can salvage the reputation of the Prime Minister. What is forgotten is that change in the Congress Party can only be inaugurated on the basis of a careful assessment of the political struggles within the constituents of the party in the States

Background Music for the Strike

Background Music for the Strike Nireekshak AS the newspaper strike dragged on, exchanges between spokesmen of managements and employees gained in acerbity, with Patriot in the thick of it all On August 12 it published on its front page a letter it had received from the Indian and Eastern Newspaper Society taking it to task for keeping its offices closed on June 29 in sympathy with the token strike call given by newspaper employees. The IENS branded this expression of sympathy with workers as "reprehensible" and threatened that the Society would have to consider "what action to take".

Distressed Friends

Distressed Friends Nireekshak PATRIOT last week frontpaged a letter addressed to it by the Managers of Times of India, Statesman, Hindustan Times, Anand Bazar Patrika, Hindu and Indian Express. "Dear Friend" said the letter which was anything but friendly, "We should like to draw your attention to the decision of the Society [Indian and Eastern Newspaper Society] that if one member newspaper is affected by a strike, the other members should exercise self-restraint and not exploit the situation. The President of the Society, in his letter dated July 18, has drawn your attention to this decision and requested you to conform to that decision should there be a strike in a member newspaper establishment in your region." The letter continued:

Stop Press

August 10, 1968 tion, involving inflow of foreign capital, is to be permitted only more selectively. In principle this is eminently sensible, though everything would PLANNING In Budget Frame PUBLICATION of the annual plan for 1968-69 throws interesting light on the un-Plan performance last year (1967-68) and the programme for the current year.

Understandable Apologies

Understandable Apologies Nireekshak IF the strike in most of the leading English newspapers had been shorter, we would, perhaps, have been treated to many new facets of Indo-Soviet differences over arms aid to Pakistan. The Prime Minister's secretariat seems to have handled the uproar fairly well on the whole, though it could have gainfully persuaded the Prime Minister to make the appropriate noises somewhat earlier. Was she, by any chance, restrained by the pro-Soviet wing in the Ministry of External Affairs ? Was it a case of nerves? Whatever it was, the Prime Minister has handled the issue with some panache. Credit is probably due to P N Haksar who heads her secretariat.

What Then Must We Do

What Then Must We Do ? WE are getting a clearer picture of Soviet arms aid to Pakistan and its impact on this country. Some of the facts have been disclosed by Dilip Mukerjee in Statesman. It was evidently someone in the cabinet who on Sunday, July 7, leaked out the story that government was "concerned" about Soviet arms aid to Pakistan. Obviously government was not sure what stance to take. Should the press be quietly encouraged to cry havoc or should the affair be allowed to simmer down? Morarji Desai, according to Statesman, pleaded for restraint as did Swaran Singh; but others disagreed. Officially, government maintained a discreet silence between the evening of July 7 and the morning of July 9; only on July 9 did Indira Gandhi make an effort to soothe the popular outburst. But it was plainly a half-hearted effort; her advisers, Dilip Mukerjee suggested, perhaps felt that "a popular outburst would be no bad thing".

Arm Twisting in Concert

Arm Twisting in Concert Nireekshak AN excellent example of how a nation can run the gamut of emotions from self-confidence to fright is provided by the coverage of Pakistan's bid to get arms from the Soviet Union, It all began with a PTI report dated New Delhi, July 3, which quoted Pakistan Times as saying that "Russia is not prepared to put a stop to the flow of its weapons to India. Instead it seems willing to sell weapons to Pakistan also." On July 6, UNI said in a report datelinod New Delhi that "Pakistan's latest effort to obtain military equipment from the Soviet Union does not appear to have borne any result, according to information reaching official sources here". Hindu published this report on an inside page (page 7).

Informed Gaps

Informed Gaps Nireekshak A DIFFICULT problem that confronts most correspondents some time or other is "sourcing". Even the casual reader is familiar with "informed sources" or "reliable sources" and "official sources" and these, more often than not, are generally amenable to identification. A fairly senior correspondent may even pass off important information without identifying his source, but by carefully hedging his statements with ifs and buts. What should one say of a lead story in a recent issue of Times of India which quoted "reliable sources" as saying that a Vietnam may be enacted in Kerala some time in the future? It is beside the point that a similar story appeared in Statesman a couple of days earlier, indicating the common origin of this crystal-gazing. How reliable are these "reliable" sources?

The Elusive Truth

 wrong with the industry. To this "classic" class war is added tension between the neo-industrialists in the rural areas and the agriculturists. As industrial units spring up with the attendant show of wealth and as the 'nobodys' of yesterday begin to move about in cars, the automatic reaction of the farmer is to resent these people. This mutual antipathy stands in the way of integration of the agricultural and the, emergent industrial sectors of the rural economy. Thus when the engineering industry in Kolhapur was passing through a crisis for want of demand, the Kolhapur Shetkari Sangh was unconcerned. The Sangh has considerable influence over farmers in the area but local industry made no efforts to enlist its co-operation in securing orders for pumpsets and agricultural implements.

Look Before You Write

their price to Rs 89. Even this price leaves an incentive for smugglers and as important as the rise in indigenous production in augmenting supply of nylon yarn is the large-scale smuggling that takes place, the value of which is estimated at Rs 12-15 crores annually. Nylon yarn represents a curious paradox in industrial priorities. As a non-priority item, its import has been subject to stringent control and is permitted only against export earnings. But import control has also served to accentuate local scarcity and, in consequence, to raise profits, the high rates of import and excise duties notwithstanding. Thus, investors in Chemicals and Fibres (an ICI company), for instance, have done far better than those in priority industries.

You Have Some Choice!

You Have Some Choice! Nireekshak WHICH paper do you read? On May 25, T V Parasuram cabled Indian Express from Washington that "the World Bank's Aid-India Consortium has recommended 1,000 million dollars of non-project aid, including 100 million dollars towards debt relief, and 450 million dollars of project aid to India during the financial year 1968-69". "The level of aid will make up for the shortfalls of the last year predicted Parasuram confidently. Sunday Standard front-paged the story under the heading MASSIVE AID CLUB PLEDGE I BILLION DOLLARS TO BE UNTIED Krishan Bhatia had a different story in Hindustan Times. "Besides praising India for its 'excellent performance in agriculture" Bhatia reported, "the Aid- India Consortium has accepted that 'India needs non-project aid of the order of $ 1 billion from its members and the International Development Association' during the current year". "As was expected' Bhatia added by way of clarification, "some of the principal donors

Curiosity Abounding

of this consignment, 25 cases contained free wheels but 15 were found to contain bricks made in India! The party has cleared the goods spending 38 per cent of the cif cost for local duties, taxes and clearing expenses. They are naturally enraged and disgusted. Such news spreads quickly. Several intending importers are believed to have cancelled their orders and the setback to our exports thus received may not be overcome for several months.

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