It is truly the beginning of good times for the Indian consumer. The entry of big players into retail will establish the consumers’ sovereignty. Small retailers simply cannot match the variety of offerings that organised retail promises. However, they are certainly not going to lose their livelihoods and become extinct. I believe they will either survive on a small scale or get absorbed by organised retail, given the vast employment opportunities it promises to create.
A. Jacob Sahayam, through e-mail
Schools of change
Your feature on the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas (Schools of Hope, BT, June 15) was a revelation. Frankly, not many people are aware of these schools and the good work that they are doing in providing quality education to underprivileged children at no cost. For once, something being done by the government makes me feel proud. It felt really good to learn that so many successful people—all the examples that you have mentioned— were alumni of these schools and actually came from very poor backgrounds.Clearly, we need more such schools in the country. Rather than giving away crores of rupees to the state governments for primary education, the government should channelise this money through the JNVs to help provide quality education across the country.
B. Rajasekaran, through e-mail
Focus on education
You should now do a cover story on the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas. These are the types of developmental projects that the government should be investing in. Such initiatives have a direct impact on people and on the next generation. Battling illiteracy will not seem to be such an unsurmountable task if we have more such institutions. The Centre should urge the states to emulate the structure of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas to promote quality education. It is through initiatives such as these, rather than reservations, that underprivileged people can really be uplifted.
R. Rangamani, through e-mail
Companies with hearts
I never expected an article in a a business magazine to move me so much. Dream Factories (BT, June 15) introduced me to a facet of the corporate world that gets easily overlooked due to our obsession with top and bottom lines of companies and their stock market movements. The story shows how companies are helping their women employees become great assets not just for themselves but also their families. One hopes other companies will also take similar steps that not just create employment but also build lives.
S. Viswanathan, through e-mail
Upbeat on India
It is very encouraging to know that despite the slowdown, newer opportunities for employment are being created by the ever-expanding Indian retail (Go luxe, get hired, BT June 15). India is becoming an attractive destination for high-end luxury brands, and this is offering excellent alternative career opportunities to talented young professionals, who have a range of options to chose from. What’s even better, these jobs come with premium salaries.
R. Nagrani, through e-mail
In the story, India Inc. wakes up to Nanotechnology (BT, June 1), Rinti Banerjee, Associate Professor, School of Biosciences & Bioengineering, IIT Bombay, was erroneously mentioned as Vimti Banerjee. The error is regretted. in the story, The fight against Inflation (BT, June 15), the price of Mother Dairy’s full-cream milk has been incorrectly mentioned as Rs 18 per litre in May 2007, whereas it was Rs 22 per litre. Therefore, its price as of May 2008 had risen by 9 per cent over the last year instead of 33 per cent as reported. The error is regretted.
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