Looks like you can get away with anything in India.
A friend of mine in Bengaluru was complaining that the school that his child goes to has a rule that all students should wear black leather shoes – and here comes the pinch – and the shoes should be Reebok and Reebok alone. What my friend could have bought for a hundred and fifty rupees from Bata or some other store, he ends up spending seven or eight hundred now. Can a school actually dictate the brand of shoe that a child should wear? I dont know, but this school does. Business as usual.
And then when I arrived at the Bengaluru airport, I encountered a new pinch. All passengers have to cough up a new tax – called ‘user development fee’ or something like that. Each passenger has to pay Rs 260/- as airport usage fee. I saw some mighty angry users that day! (btw: i think they really need the money, if the airport PA system is anything to go by. I nearly missed my flight, as the departure announcement could not be heard in one side of the departure lounge). More business as usual.
The Madras Chamber of Commerce had an interesting talk by Arun Shourie, a few days ago, as a part of the election jamboree. Vittal, the former Chief Vigilance Commissioner, also spoke. In his speech Vittal mentioned about the over trillion dollars stashed away by Indians in Swiss Banks – which is the highest among all nations. Now that the Swiss have agreed to divulge the names of the depositors in case the national government requests for it – he wondered, why Indian Government has not. In his talk, Shourie said that the leaders of opposition in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha had both written to the Prime Minister, asking him to do just that, and that the letter was not even acknowledged. Ah yes, politics…Business as usual.