A survey conducted by India Today on Narendra Modi-led NDA government's privatisation policy has received mixed response from respondents.
The poll called 'Mood of the Nation' (MOTN) asked respondents to assess the central government's decision to privatise Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL), Air India and Shipping Corporation of India. As many as 44 per cent people supported the Centre's privatisation drive, while 39 per cent opposed the government's decision to sell its majority stake in the Public Sector Units (PSUs). Whereas 17 per cent either didn't know about the government's privatisation policy or were not sure about it.
People opposing the move questioned the need to privatise the state-owned firm and felt it was a bad move, while those supporting it believed that it would unlock tremendous value by way of enhanced professionalism, access to advanced technologies, newer global market, diversified product portfolio and improved availability of resources.
The Union Cabinet in November last year gave in-principle approval for disinvesting stake in five blue-chip PSUs, including BPCL. Apart from BPCL, the government has also approved disinvestment in Shipping Corp of India (SCI), Container Corp of India, THDC India and North Eastern Electric Power Corporation Ltd (NEEPCO), which may help the exchequer meet its divestment target of Rs 1 lakh crore in the current fiscal.
It is also planning to float Expression of Interest (EoI) for selling its entire stake in the loss-making national carrier Air India.
While the government plans to privatise Air India by selling its 100 per cent stake, it will divest its entire 53.29 per cent stake in BPCL and 30.8 per cent stake in Container Corporation of India.