ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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National Investment Board

With reference to the article “National Investment Board: One More from Pandora’s Box” by Ashish Kothari (EPW, 10 November 2012), the government should have made sure that the idea of establishing the NIB found acceptance with various ministries and departments before it publicly floated the idea. Though the article does not say much about the huge backlog of projects in the pipeline waiting for approvals, it does suggest certain time-tested alternatives which could be considered, rather than adding a new layer of bureaucracy in the form of the NIB.

The delay in granting environmental clearances could be addressed via two mechanisms, either look into the bureaucratic hurdles within the Ministry of Environment for speedy project approvals or go forward with an alternative institutional framework as prescribed by the department of economic affairs. If at all the government has to go for the second option then vigil should be maintained that no undue advantage should be given to powerful business and corporate houses so that they can override environmental protection and safeguards.

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