The FICCI must be congratulated for very successfully conducting a seminar and exhibition for strengthening and creating a sustainable Maritime Industry in our country. All the participants at the exhibition, Indian and Foreign, deserve praise for displaying and explaining their products and services in very cordial and patient manner. Last week we had attended a conference and listened to the speeches delivered by Rajeev Sinha, Capt BVJK Sharma, Julian M Bevis, Capt; Ashok Srivastava, Laxman Rajwani and Deepak Shetty our DG Shipping besides other eminent speakers. Mr Ganguly advised us that we must understand dredging before talking about buying and employing dredgers was laudable.
We tend to compare achievements in infrastructure development and coastal shipping of European nations with India without taking into account our rising population and regional conflicts involving different state governments vis-à-vis their differing approaches and tendencies. On the other hand, there is less number of population in foreign countries and no regional conflicts. That is the reason perhaps Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways had talked about the mindset of Indian officials while discharging their duties. We cannot compare India with China as it is not a democratic country and decisions are taken faster there which paves for economic development.
Steps must be taken to curtail our rising population and speed up electric power generation to remove regional imbalance. China and other foreign countries had focused on enhancing skill development programme among youth to make them employable. On the other hand, this initiative is yet to succeed in India. If we have to “Make in India”, we need people who can “ make” and make qualitatively. Training must be imparted to electrical technologists, machinists, specialized welders, specialist machine operators etc; by seeking the assistance of expert technicians from overseas. Land acquisition should be undertaken by arriving at a consensus with local residents and not through any legislation. Cultivable and fertile land must not be acquired for industrialization. It is better to emulate Bharat Ratna Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya and spiritual leader Acharya Vinoba Bhave in such matters. Those times were arguably different but similar approach will still work because our “ sanskaras” remain the same. As long as we offer adequate compensation and convince the land owner about our sincerity of purpose, he will surely respond favourably.