ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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KARNATAKA-Beyond Castes

from the government's budget, the cost of the various export incentives and concessions in operation now is hidden in the form of duty exemptions, import licences marketable at a premium, and so on. The export support measures include duty-free import of capital goods, transferable advance licences for imports required for exports, the vaunted passbook system forgiving exporters duty credits on exports and permitting high- premium imports and, above all, the system of transferable special import licences (SIL) granted to export houses, star trading houses and superstar trading houses under which as many as 90 items of consumer goods, including gold and silver, are permitted to be imported. Government spokesmen have freely admitted that the advance licences and the passbook scheme especially have been abused on a massive scale, not just by fly-by-night operators but also by some of the most respected names in the Indian corporate sector. The accumulation of foreign exchange reserves has been at the core of the government's claims of the success of the reforms. But, as is well known, the major contribution to the rise in reserves has come from capital receipts in the form of portfolio investment and non-resident Indians' deposits. The post-reform period has seen a sharp rise in external liabilities. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) estimates India's external liabilities to have gone up from March 1995 and possibly $104.30 bn by

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