Corruption in India but…

Published: November 24, 2010
The darkest regions represent the most corrupt countries and the the lighter regions represent the least corrupt countries in the CPI. PHOTO: TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL

The darkest regions represent the most corrupt countries and the the lighter regions represent the least corrupt countries in the CPI. PHOTO: TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL

The opposition in India has asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to resign for lack of action against ministers guilty of corruption. India’s Supreme Court also earlier asked Mr Singh to explain why he had failed to act against the person responsible for a case of massive corruption in the telecommunication sector of the economy. Former telecommunications minister, A Raja, since ousted, came under the scrutiny of the national audit, which reported that he had probably walked away with $40 billion.

Other reprimands on how the Congress government has misgoverned have surfaced too. A US-based research group says India lost an estimated $462 billion taken out illegally in the past 60 years. Significantly, tax evasion and corruption have increased after India got rid of its low-growth ‘licence-raj’ economy in 1991. Unlike Pakistan, however, the corruption has surfaced mostly in the private sector where tax evasion and under-invoicing (exports) and over-invoicing (imports) are rampant.

Some other India scams are worth mentioning. The recent Commonwealth Games exposed India to global ridicule when the arena was found to be defective because of corruption in the award of contracts. Ashok Chavan, chief minister of Maharashtra, was involved in the Adarsh scam worth billion of rupees, a housing programme meant for the families of the martyrs of the Kargil war of 1999 but where the flats were sold to undeserving individuals. If one were to think that the Pakistani judiciary is corrupt then they should hear this: in 2008, the then Chief Justice of India Justice KG Balakrishnan wrote to the prime minister recommending that proceedings be initiated for the removal of Justice Soumitra Sen, judge, Calcutta High Court, for corruption.

Justice Nirmal Yadav of the Punjab and Haryana high court was found indulging in forgery and abuse of his official position as a judge while buying land in Solan in the adjoining state of Himachal Pradesh. In 2008, a sum of Rs1.5 million in cash was mysteriously delivered at the residence in the same city, Chandigarh, of another judge of the high court, Justice Nirmaljit Kaur. This could be just the tip of the iceberg of corruption in India’s 28 high courts.

Comparison with Pakistan is inevitable but we undertake it usually for two purposes: one, to satisfy our ill-will against India as the ‘enemy state’ apparently going down the tubes; and two, to lighten the burden of guilt of our own corruption in Pakistan saying so what if we are corrupt, India is corrupt too. Tragically, there is a third way of looking at it: corruption is rampant in both India and Pakistan but India is steadily seen as a successful state while Pakistan seems to qualify as a ‘failing state’. Transparency International has ranked India 87th out of 178 countries on its 2010 International Corruption Perceptions Index. Pakistan was the forty-seventh most corrupt state in the world in 2009; it has become the forty-second most corrupt in 2010. In two years, we have broken some past records of our own. The scale, no doubt, is different when framed against the growth rates posted by the two countries.

There is more to read about India if we want to correct our perspective on Pakistan. The corrective is aimed at the Pakistani obsession that every case of scam must lead to collapse of the state at the highest point of imagination and a mid-term change of government at the lowest. The mind is so used to ‘toppling’ of elected governments by the army in the past that we have lost our faith in democracy and want to return to a military or quasi-military rule where we perceive less corruption. India, like Pakistan, is a non-exporting country. Its taxation system is as defective as Pakistan’s. Its infrastructure is abysmal just like Pakistan’s and service delivery and other issues of outreach are as poor, if not more.

The economist in Pakistan complains that the retail sector pays hardly any tax. The retailing sector of India can be split into two segments — the informal and the formal — and the former, comprising small retailers, pay no taxes. In terms of value, the Indian retail industry is worth $300 billion and its contribution to India’s gross domestic product stands at 10 per cent, the highest compared to all other Indian industries. What about loss-making in the state sector of the economy? In Pakistan all state-owned corporations account for a whopping Rs400 billion loss to the exchequer every year because of the frequent bailouts when there is debt-overhang from money payable to the oil sector.

Not all of India’s state sector economy is something to write home about. Out of the 48 units deemed “troubled”, seven have been identified as loss-making and fit for closure, while divestment is seen as the only option to revive another batch of 11 in the red. There are nine profitable companies that won’t be touched. About 17 units are under scrutiny for options of revival ‘by inviting support from private sector’. Yet what is it that makes the world think India is ‘shining’ while Pakistan is experiencing a never-ending eclipse?

Pakistan is different from India only in its problem of law and order which is undermined by terrorism which, in turn, appears to the world as embedded in the state structure itself. Why does the world think the state in Pakistan is the epicentre of terrorism radiating threat to other states? Because the state in Pakistan has used non-state actors in its policy of jihad and will not — or is unable to — act against the UN-banned terrorist organisations on its soil. Furthermore, because of its earlier policy of deploying jihadi organisations, it has created centres of power inside the country it can no longer control. Some observers, and this may include a few inside Pakistan as well, are of the view that the writ of the state no longer works or is absent in a large chunk of the country’s territory. That is definitely not the case with India.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 25th, 2010.

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Reader Comments (70)

  • Anoop
    Nov 24, 2010 - 11:41PM

    Even comparing India and Pakistan is an insult to India. The world recognizes this but Pakistan doesn’t.Recommend

  • Sadiq Nawas, Doha
    Nov 24, 2010 - 11:57PM

    India is much better in taxation and infinitely better in rule of law. And, its infrastructure is not ‘abysmal’, as is mentioned. The author is totally ignorant of the giant strides in infrastructure development India has achieved.Recommend

  • moazzam
    Nov 25, 2010 - 12:48AM

    the fact of the matter is that Pakistan is using non state actors to exercise its infulnce in its neighbours while india is using its state agencies to execute its missions.Recommend

  • Vin
    Nov 25, 2010 - 3:28AM

    I wonder why Islam limits itself to Muslim Ummah? All other religions talk of Universal brotherhood and oneness of Creation while Islam talks of Kafir idologies. This very teaching makes it difficult for muslims to fully love every human being and integrate with teh creation of God. Realize ..Seed of Hate becomes a Tree of Hate and devours you… Recommend

  • Stephen
    Nov 25, 2010 - 4:30AM

    Here we go again… And I ask the same question as everyone on the forum – why does Pakistan compare itself with India?
    What genuine purpose does this serve?
    Being European, but having the luxury to actually have worked in both India and Pakistan, amongst other countries, the comparison is completely futile, nonsensical and amusing beyond belief!
    Even the editorial summation at the end is absolutely negative towards the country whom the paper purports to represent!
    You guys in Pakistan may have a problem, but it seems to be from a certain sect of the population with tremendous foreign influence (local and far distant foreigners involved). India has problems literally north, east, south and west! Kashmir to Assam, Tamil Nadu to Khalistan – and where is the law? These groups have even exhibited the Pakistani flag as a symbol of their revolt against the Indian state.
    One visit to India and trust me you see what India ‘shining’ is all about; almost as real as a Bollywood film, where an Afghan warlord can travel from Afghanistan to the music of his beloved singing and arrive in India without even a mention of a country that actually lies between them!
    Yes Pakistan has its problems – too many, and granted it has corruption that cannot be condoned in any way whatsoever, but I think even the President would quiver at the thought of a $40 billion scam – I think :SRecommend

  • Anwar Hasan
    Nov 25, 2010 - 5:34AM

    As a Pakistani I say this: ” India is way, way ahead of Pakistan”Recommend

  • srinivasan
    Nov 25, 2010 - 5:54AM

    You are right about Pakistan and wrong about India. Even yesterday your own Interior minister confessed to the fact all terrorists are Pakistan grown. Espionage and counter espionage are not terrorism. Pl provide any evidence of India’s involvement in any forum incl UN and then complain. Or it will be better to keep quiet as the other countries can see thru your game.Recommend

  • sameer ali
    Nov 25, 2010 - 8:24AM

    i think we shud compare ourselves with bangladesh or srilanka…India is rapidly progressing and its a huge country..Recommend

  • Ashwin
    Nov 25, 2010 - 8:44AM

    Well written sir.Hope Pakistan as a nation decides to shun politics of strategic assets.Like setting up this policy and making it work well didn’t happen in a hurry so will dismantling it will not happen in a hurry. Untill this thing is done the world will tend look down on Pakistan.Since the perception about Pakistan world over is that of a unreliable of the most important questions one needs to ask is ” How many Pakistani actually are willing to have stake in Pakistan”, their lies the answer.If we own our country like our home we will tend to be worried about our neighborhood, more importantly about what is happening in our home.Recommend

  • Makdoom Humza
    Nov 25, 2010 - 9:13AM

    It is a brilliant editorial. India is world’s most corrupt country but despite that US. President flattered it as being the developed country. Perhaps development and corruption are synonymous in India.Recommend

  • Pankaj
    Nov 25, 2010 - 9:16AM

    The difference between Indian and pakistani economies is not just that of GDP size but the composition of GDP

    Indian economy has not only grown rapidly but our technological success is also huge and this is a BIG DIFFERENCE

    For eg How many world class companies are present in Pakistan who are ABLE to raise capital from international financial markets or who are listed on NAS DAQ

    Our exports are well diversified and we are able to export high tech goods and services.Recommend

  • Rohit Shenoy
    Nov 25, 2010 - 9:34AM

    The author has not added one more fact.

    There has been some arrests made in Financial sector for bribery just yesterday. Even after that, Public Sector banks are financially sound & are making profits. Private sector banks are also being closely monitored by Reserve Bank.

    A lot of loss making public sector undertakings, have now turned around and are now in list of worlds’ best companies. They are called Navratnas.

    The biggest asset for India has been its electorate. The State election results in Bihar, the countries most back ward, most corrupt and lawless. But, ithas dramatically relected a development oriented govt. Here Pakistan lags behind a lot.

    The biggest dilemma for Indians is rising communalism, Non state and State sponsored actors of Pakistan, which are out to destroy your country and create problems for us. Read Pakistan army and intelligence.Recommend

  • Sonam Shyam
    Nov 25, 2010 - 9:47AM

    The obsession of Pakistan with India is really an extremely curious case. In this editorial, the author has tried his best to portray negative similarities of Pakistan with India with a conclusion that Pakistan minus terrorism is at par with India. Of course, Pakistan without Islamic extremism would be beneficial to the world but even then it will not be able to match India in terms of world perception of it as a nation state. There are certain aspects which make India very different from Pakistan. India has the worlds largest democracy, it has thriving secularism with nearly as many Muslims as there are in Pakistan, it is one of the worlds oldest civilizations which is home to the worlds oldest religion-Hinduism, its arts and culture are world famous, its unity in diversity in unparalleled in the world, one of the worlds fastest growing economies, entrepreneurs who are world class, giant strides in scientific progress including medical science, some of the best educational institutions, free media and judiciary keeping check on the government, worlds second largest army which is subservient to the civilian government and most importantly the people of India who from all walks of life build the international image of India with their conduct and professional achievements. Now I want to know from the author of this editorial that can you seriously compare yourself with India? India of course has some of the most terrible problems to surmount, some of which you have rightly pointed out, but still it will take decades for Pakistan to achieve the world perception levels of India even if religious fundamentalism ends in Pakistan tomorrow. Pakistan has to build a culture of excellence among its educated class which can match the world standards. Before concluding, I wish to know as to why Pakistan does not compare itself with its all weather friend China and why it compares itself with its declared enemy India? The only similarity between Pakistan and China is that they both have a common enemy-India. Otherwise Pakistan and China are as different as chalk and cheese. Pakistan will be much better served if it develops good relations with India rather than with China which we all know is the worlds most oppressive dictatorship. Recommend

  • Patriot
    Nov 25, 2010 - 10:51AM

    Its only in the past 203 years that the comparison of india and pakistan have become so weighted in favor of india. That too is only `cause of the failure of pakistani styled democracy. Hardly anyone who has visited india pre 2007 would disagree that people of pakistan have always enjoyed a better life style than that in india. This too is despite of the fact that India has a big big head start compared to pakistan back in 1947. We hardly got anything from the united india. But we have certainly come forward and only recently we were ahead than india in many key indicators. Even now as per WB Pakistan is a better place to do business than India. Those impressed with indian style of democracy must realise that their democracy is NOT forking for the 60% of their population which is classified as “poor” and makes up the biggest poor chunk in the world, which in turn in making this whole region look bad! Inshaallah with these corrupt moving from the top we shall soon catch up with india! just a matter of time!Recommend

  • Rakesh
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:05AM

    India is a non-exporting country; Infrastructure is abysmal??? Dude, what are you saying? Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:09AM


    Please be sure before you write. I am from Tamil Nadu, we are proud to be called as Indians rather than Tamilians. Do you know Viswanathan Anand, A.R.Rehman, Dr.Abdul Kalam & Devraman (Tennis Gold Medalist, Asian Games) are all from Tamil Nadu. We proud to be Indian, we work for the the raise of our Mother India. Recommend

  • G.Khan
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:45AM

    What a Hypocrisy that Indians claiming here that Pakistan has obsession with India. Well, it seems just the opposite. There are only 5 Pakistanis who wrote their comments here out of 15 total comments before mine. And let’s guess who the other 10 are? Yup, You got it… count yourself. That means 33% Pakistanis on Pakistani Newspaper in here against 66% Indians? Where is the obsession? LOL…Who is Obsessed with who? Results tells all. Don’t they?Recommend

  • Nov 25, 2010 - 11:46AM

    I am not carried away by the India shining bit – everyone in India knows that our daily lives are far from shining.

    And yes Stephen, I agree on face value India would seem rather dismal when you compare it with the beautiful urban centres of Pakistan.

    But this why I am proud to be indian – every five years we have a peaceful transition of power where the defeated party concedes defeat and congratulates the winning party – that in itself is something to be proud of considering our diversity and illiteracy. Recommend

  • anonymous
    Nov 25, 2010 - 12:23PM

    I feel sorry for all those folks who have been made delusional from indian fake media representation. On the basis of a comparative analysis and with respect to human power efforts in economy, rates of growth for both countries are almost equal – in every aspect.Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Nov 25, 2010 - 1:41PM


    Please read the heading once again, lolRecommend

  • sk2010
    Nov 25, 2010 - 1:44PM

    Can you compare US with Canada or UK with Ireland ? The whole comparision between India and Pakistan are hence utterly incomprehensible from the first instance, by any objective standards, without even getting into issues of political and social and ideological superstructure. There can and should be trade, cooperation in business and cultural and scientific spheres which will benefit both. Most Indians are not trying to copy solutions from China or US or some other country but innovate and improve their situation and work to achieve their own ambitions in life instead of getting obsessed with what happens elsewhere. That is how Yusuf Hamied of CIPLA, Habil Khorakiwala of Wockhardt or Azim Premji of Wipro or all the Khans of Bollywood or APJ Abdul Kalam and other scientists and executives and bankers etc have contributed to India. Why not get on with it? The 21st century will be an Asian century, let us focus on that and finally prosper. Three hundred years ago the subcontinent and China were the wealthiest and most productive regions in the world. After a decline both the regions China and Indian subcontinent, are coming into their own. Recommend

  • Suraj
    Nov 25, 2010 - 2:13PM

    Hi, We should not go into the comparison. Every country has its own power and limitations and this is decided by many factors. Be it religion, extremism, location of your country in the world map, education of peoples etc.

    I think we should concentrate on our countries development and enjoy the fruits. We should work towards the development be it social, economical or political. Rest will take care of itself.Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Nov 25, 2010 - 2:17PM

    Corruption in India is high. but now due to media and vigilant masses, the culprits are being brought to book. ( As seen in various scams). It has forced the govt. into action.
    The only agenda on which politicians can be voted to power in India now is on development and transparency. Not on basis of religion or caste. (Recent election in state of Bihar has proven that. Other examples are MP, Gujarat, Delhi, Orissa where parties are re- elected on performance not on caste or ideological difference)
    Now compare that with Pakistan where I understand the PM has not paid taxes due to him.
    @G Khan When the article is on India, Indians will comment on it. Is is not that Pakistani newspapers and coloumnists are obsessed with India. BTW can you make a back of the envelope calculation and tell how much percentage of Indian populace commented on this article? Just do that. If you can’t, let me know I will do it for you.

  • bvindh
    Nov 25, 2010 - 4:57PM


    since you have had the luxury of working in India, please explain what’s wrong with Tamilnadu.
    BTW, I am writing from Tamilnadu.Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii
    Nov 25, 2010 - 5:24PM

    This article seems to tell pakistanis that there only problem is Jihadi Terrorism – supported and unsupported by establishment.
    NO, even if Terrorism becomes zero in pakistan, pakistan’s economy is in bad shape.
    Pakistans taxation ( main fund generater ) is very close to nothing compared to its requirements.

    Pakistan is charging IT , i think about 2.5% to 5% on the income of all. Where as Indian IT is on an average 28% for individuals and 30% flat for cos.

    So the difference between Pak and India is clearly seen in this instance itself. And there is lot of dis-information in the article and comments about india, like india is not exporting, pak lifestyle status was better before 2007, UN reporting etc.,

    Before fixing terror problem, rather parallel to it, Pakistan needs to fix RIGHT NOW Taxation problem. Remember Economic problem is long term feeder of terror problem.Recommend

  • harkol
    Nov 25, 2010 - 6:02PM

    Corruption is a legacy of the British Raj, both Pakistan and India suffer from it. The corruption of society in general began when Robert Clive started an corrupt way of governing, where it was impossible for the peasantry of India to sell anything without paying a bribe to East India company officials. Over the centuries it spread to every organ of the state – and then to the succeeding countries of British Raj (India, pakistan, Bangladesh).

    India was relatively lucky to have people of high moral stature (Gandhi, Nehru, Patel) to guide the country and put it on a better democratic footing, though polity continued to be corrupt. In terms of money involved, Indian politicians skim more money than Pakistani politicians can ever dream of.

    Article goes of track when it thinks the difference is just with the state sponsored Non-State Actors! It in reality has to do with heft. In sheer $ terms, gaining access to a future multi-trillion market is important for most countries, even if per-capita income remains abysmal (Read: Fortune at the bottom of the Pyramid). Since, the Indian pyramid has a very large bottom, every business wants a stake in it.

    Pakistani Pyramid would be perhaps 1/8th the size of the Indian pyramid. There in lies the rub. Even if Pakistan achieves double of India’s per capita,which is a pipe-dream at this point, and has very stable polity with no non-state actors – even then it can’t match India’s heft and world’s attraction with India. If the stable politics, high per-capita were the touchstone, then perhaps economies like Australia should be spoken off as potential super-powers or as big markets – never happens.

    Pakistan establishment has never reconciled with that fact that India is bigger by orders of magnitude.Recommend

  • shafqat
    Nov 25, 2010 - 7:06PM

    I am a Pakistani expat who owns businesses in Malaysia and I frequently travel to Tamil Nadu. I have existing business interests in Pakistan aswell. Most of my business partners here are Tamil and I think that they are wonderful people.
    Since I have visited and experienced corruption both in Pakistan and India hence I can safely state that India is way worse in corruption and simply clearing the red tape is a challenge there. The business systems in Pakistan are way ahead. The transparency and ease of doing business especially with the introduction of the latest IT systems has greatly improved business processes in Pakistan.
    You can compare India and Pakistan in the World Bank ranking. Whereas Pakistan ranks next to China, India is seen right at the bottom.

  • muhammed
    Nov 25, 2010 - 7:06PM

    As an Indian I would have never ever got interested in knowing pakistan what is going inside it whether economically,militarily ,entertainment wise. Only Trigger was 26/11 and i am searching for the intent to do so much damage and the state machinery and its people still harbouring the enmity without clearing the terrorist right away .

    In anger I searched everyday from pakistan news site to show some humanness to condemn and punish these terrorists so that I can forgive them in my prayers to allah . From conspiracy theory to stubborness and blind hate propaganda I have started addicted to Pakistan news channel as a fiction novel ..

    Very rarely some elite writers capture the true India with so many muslims in it and its real nature. Rest same fear based fiction novel.Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Nov 25, 2010 - 7:17PM

    @G Khan
    If I consider each of the commentators in this article as Indian, that makes a grand sum of 25 from a population of billion + people. ET would be read by atleast a few thousands of Pakistani nationals. Observe the percentage of articles that are “India centric” to total articles on a given day. Now tell who is obsessed with whom? Why ET, take “The Nation”, Dawn, and that strange one “THe Daily Mail”, Pakistan Tribune and do the same calculation. results will surely surprise you.Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Nov 25, 2010 - 7:24PM

    You are right. As commented on one of the articles elsewhere, Investors target Pakistan but somehow that investment reaches India. Actually their GPS system is at fault friend. On serious note all businesses invest to make money. The “corruption and risks” are factored in at the time of investment. They still find India “hot” inspite of experiences of people like you.Recommend

  • Farhan
    Nov 25, 2010 - 8:30PM

    Well with all due respect to my indian friends here, i met a number of indians myself and i found that they consider Pakistan like Afghanistan may be because of what they have seen on indian TV channels. Dear friends, its true that last 30 years have been bad for Pakistan but it doesnt justify commenting without knowing basic facts only on perceptions.

    Its true that Pakistanis are obsessed with India but it is equally true that most of the Indians also think like Pakistanis (both are obsessed with almost similar degree so dont argue on this fact).

    India is a big country. Its shinning because of its huge and rising middle class otherwise whats the difference in standard of life of a common man across border is fruitless to discuss. Recommend

  • shafqat
    Nov 25, 2010 - 9:12PM

    @Tony Singh
    A lot of investment in India is portfolio investment and not foreign direct investment which is not a healthy sign for any economy. You can see whats happening with Ireland or Greece. Foreign investment and GDP growth can easily be accomplished by increasing consumption but it is not sustainable. High fiscal deficits, high debt, high trade deficit coupled with high inflation would in the end leave India in a worse state once the positive mood starts to change. If Greece, Iceland or Ireland could be shorted within weeks than so can India. The fundamentals are simply not there and any event could pop the bubble.Recommend

  • Anoop
    Nov 25, 2010 - 10:02PM


    Buddy, glad you think Pakistan is more transparent than India, but sadly the world and Transparency International dont think so.

    They bring out reports every year and here are some of the links for that report.

    India’s ranking is 87th while Pakistan is almost placed a number double that of India at 143. This is just about how transparent a country is and not about anything else.

    I live in a City which is synonymous for IT. I know how easily new companies come up here and MNC move into it. Transparency varies from state to state also. My state is very good at wooing business and even Obama urges American companies to move jobs from here to Buffalo. I live in Bangalore. My next door neighbour is Tamil Nadu, some of the smartest people in the world come from that state. No wonder Chennai also has high investment rate.Recommend

  • Avanti
    Nov 25, 2010 - 10:36PM

    Add one more Indian to the list here.

    No Indian has denied the rampant corruption or other problems that India has. We all agree.

    What you have to see is the projection – what India is trying to do and the direction it is taking. This is where India and Pakistan differ significantly. Going back 20 or 50 years, we were at par as after all, we are two branches of the same tree. But the two countries have taken different paths and the results show. The differences will get bigger and bigger.

    Years ago, we used to wonder if democracy was good for India as it brought political parties based on religion, castes, and languages. In the sixties, there were so many problems with languages – Tamil vs Hindi, for example. When was the last time we had a big Hindu vs Muslim thing? 50 years ago, it used to be on yearly basis.

    As everyone says, democracy takes its time. You just have to have faith in it. The recent elections in Bihar prove it. There used to be jokes about Bihar (Pakistan can have Kashmir as long as it agrees to take Bihar). No more.

    So, you can compare India and Pakistan for another year or two. Then you have to find a different country – Bangladesh being the perfect example. From what I have read, Bangladesh’s path is more like India’s, and I am sure in years to come, it will march way past Pakistan unless Pakistan looks internally and solves its problems. Recommend

  • affie
    Nov 25, 2010 - 10:42PM

    @ All Indians……….. who are lying that they don’t bother much about Pakistan.
    Just tune in your radios, watch your TVs or read your newspapers.
    you will see Pakistan everywhere.
    Pakistan is and will haunt you ever, till your last breath O’ India…Recommend

  • shafqat
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:05PM

    Firstly, transparency international itself isn’t transparent and is a non-governmental private sector organization. Secondly, the CPI index is a corruption “perception” index and has no methodology involved. It is basically a survey of people’s opinion and that’s it.
    Since I have worked in both countries hence I have a bottom up opinion which is more genuine. I have visited both Chennai and Bangalore. Chennai was a lesson in poverty for me personally. As far as Indian labor is concerned than there is a growing perception in East Asia that most “IT” guys are under qualified. Indian labor and outsourcing is quickly being replaced by destinations like Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand etc. 7-8 years ago there were people interested in Indian IT but that perception has since then changed. India’s strength is still largely its NRI population and I know a number of people who have literally abandoned their businesses in India. As I said earlier, the fundamentals are missing. India should focus on its core competency agriculture which sadly has grown at around 1%.
    And Anoop you need to actually visit Pakistan and experience business processes there before making an opinion.

  • cheema
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:12PM

    India’s poverty rate is 43% compared to Pakistan’s 17% according to world bank. Bangladesh’s poverty rate is 49%. It seems like Bangladesh and India are neck and neck in the race. Beating Pakistan in 2 years is wishful thinking. Recommend

  • Nov 25, 2010 - 11:16PM

    I am sorry, but the author has missed the basic aspect, of why India is economically better and has stronger institutions like the Supreme Court, or the Indian Constitution, which is considered sacrosanct. Name one Indian former PM or Chief of Army, whose assets are located abroad and their families reside there. There is corruption with the bureaucracy in India and amongst its politicians and uniformed services, but all this money is re-invested within India. In India it is the private sector which is the major contributor in corruption scams. Name one instance in India, or in any other democracy in Europe, Asia, American continent, where the sitting government, or the paid civil and uniformed servants defy judgments of their Supreme Court. In Karachi, the financial capitol of Pakistan, the writ of the state is not seen and common criminals have killed over 2,000 citizens in target killings, while the government and the police look the other side because of short term political benefits. In no other country do state security agencies indulge in such large scale rip offs of real estate as is done in Pakistan in the name of welfare, or are accused in scams like the the several thousand missing containers carrying weapons and other contraband goods, that were loaded on containers with fake ISAF documentation and yet nobody gets caught. India maybe bad, but we are worse and the proof lies in our failure to punish those who get caught. If a state has no writ and there is no respect for Rule of Law, or Supreme Court judgments, than the very edifice on which the foundations of a sovereign state rests are shaken and this is what has happened in Pakistan. We need to accept the ground realities. Just look at how our poor Hajis were ripped off by nominees of the sitting government and the contractors appointed by them and compare them with the conditions of Indian Hajis. India has a very terrible record when it comes to dealing with its minorities, but the tragedy of Pakistan is that the state institutions are abused and the collective interests of the majority are put at stake for the self interests of few individuals. Recommend

  • Avanti
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:46PM

    Pakistan is our neighbor, and so, it’ll always be in the news.

    “Pakistan is and will haunt you ever, till your last breath O’ India…” that it is already doing and doing so well. Recommend

  • Cherish Raj
    Nov 25, 2010 - 11:54PM

    In economics, the ‘investment’ by foreign institutional investors is not an INVESTMENT. That is not included in the GDP calculation. Plus FDI in India is to the tune of $25 to $ 30 billion. You can check the Pakistani figures for comparison. India has a high trade deficit only when the merchandise export is considered. In addition to merchandise, we have software exports, BPO, booming tourism,FDI, FII and huge remittance from abroad. So, trade deficit is not a big issue. We also have one of the highest savings rate (36%) in the world and we finance the current account deficit with our own money. Fortunately, we do not have to approach the US, China, Saudi Arabia, Libya, the UAE etc for the day to day activities of our country. We have a corporate sector that pays DIRECT taxes and tax collection are growing at a healthy rate of 25-30% every year. We have an ambitious corporate sector. For example, Mahindra took over SSangyoung Motor Corporation, the fourth largest auto company of South Korea, this week for $470 million and Daewoo is already owned 100% by Tata, and I think they are assembling trucks in Pakistan.
    I just want to clarify to the ‘European’ about Tamil Nadu. It is one of the most successful states in India, where both agriculture and industry are thriving. It is one of India’s success stories and plays a crucial role in pushing India forward. Yeah, Tamils are very particular about their culture but it is more Indian than any other state. There is no Khalistan movement now. Punjab and its neighbour Haryana, are the richest states in India and India’ s high profile Delhi Mumbai industrial corridon is expected to include both these states.Recommend

  • sohaib
    Nov 26, 2010 - 2:14AM

    Pakistan needs to put its house in order and once we are able to do that, we will not need comparisons with India. I dont agree with the last statement about the writ of the state. Because of the regional strategic and security issues, Pakistan cant fully crackdown on these groups simply because the blow back will be too intense. This delusion of being a power and this Indian desire to identify with the developed world is a very elitist thinking and has no traction with millions who live in extreme poverty in India. Talk about writ of the state! Recommend

  • Raqib Ali
    Nov 26, 2010 - 3:03AM

    Its amusing to see Indians worrying about Pakistan comparing itself to India..

    A great deal of time I would say.Recommend

  • Vin
    Nov 26, 2010 - 7:16AM

    being an Indian, I am sure none of the accused Leaders would get convicted….. This is all an eyewash and please dont get happy about this… Take my bet on this…NO ONE will get CONVICTIONS…not atleast in 50 years :).. ha ha… Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Nov 26, 2010 - 9:05AM


    Exactly brother, spot on, before 26/11, we dont even bother about Pakistan except for Cricket & Hockey. Its 26/11 that hurt us. It will take time to heal.Recommend

  • cheema
    Nov 26, 2010 - 9:41AM

    @muhammad and ashok sai
    you might like to see what happened with the the Samjhauta express bombing and how hindu extremists were involved. For 2 years, indian knee jerk reaction blamed LET and now the indian authorities have said that hindu extremist organizations are involved.
    Anyways, whatever you say you guys are obsessed with Pakistan long before 26/11. No Pakistani paper has ever launched a hate campaign against India. You can only find positive stuff on India but read any Indian paper and its full of hate, lies and bigotry which is constantly brainwashing Indians against Pakistan. Its just the hindu brahmin mentality.
    I won’t be surprised if 2 years down the line, 26/11 turns out to be a plot hatched by hindu extremists just like the Samjhauta express bombing. Kasab and his likes could easily be hired and brain washed by outside agents like David Headley (who worked for the FBI).Recommend

  • Raakesh
    Nov 26, 2010 - 10:09AM

    I live in Tamil Nadu. I want to know from Stephen what is the law and order problem in Tamil Nadu? I travel regularly within the state and can emphatically say there is no problem. By the way, what problem is he talking about in Kerala? My sister lives there and I go there regularly. What is the problem in Karnataka? No sir, no problem. Except for some districts in Andhra Pradesh where naxalism is an issue, South India is completely peaceful.

    Khalistan issue was solved in 1988. Punjab is now one of the richest agriculture states in India. Yes, there are problems in India. The only major problem is Kashmir. As for insurgents in the Northeast, many have been arrested and they are ‘manageable’.

  • Anoop
    Nov 26, 2010 - 11:07AM


    Sadly, the Urdu newspapers that give you data are wrong says none other than the World Bank.

    The data is from the late 90’s. SInce then India has grown twice as fast as Pakistan, for instance, the following year’s prediction for India is 8.5% and for Pakistan is 4.1%. As a result poverty in Pakistan has increased, whereas in India it has decreased.

    Even in Bangladesh it has increased. So, you are right, in terms of poverty allievation India and Bangladesh are head to head. That is compliment considering all the mess that Pakistan has got itself into this decade and all the progress Bangladesh has made during the same decade.

    Anyway, I think it’ll be convenient for you to live in your bubble.Recommend

  • Avanti
    Nov 26, 2010 - 12:05PM

    Honestly speaking, those numbers, even if right, are just a snapshot. What I am talking about is the direction, the path. India is on the right path (or next to it), and Pakistan is not.

    The irony is, a whole bunch of Indians that I know here in the US have a very soft corner for Pakistan. We relate to Pakistan so well in so many spheres of life! We want it to be peaceful, make progress, and be a rich and powerful nation. It is Pakistan’s India centric policy that bothers us as it hits close to home.

    The real enemy for us is China and that is what we all worry about it. That is where India’s defense budget is going. That is why India and US, along with Japan, Vietnam, and Australia, etc. are coming close. “Pakistan is just a nuisance factor – the kid brother who just keeps bugging you” is what many of us think.

    So, please if you genuinely offer your hand in friendship, we will be the happiest of all. But it has to be of true friendship. None of us wants Kashmiris being killed by Indian army, but then no one wants to give in to the violence either that comes from Pakistan trained militants. That has to stop (both ways) if friendship is to take place.Recommend

  • Anoop
    Nov 26, 2010 - 12:28PM


    I understand it hard to admit to fact but you can read about how transparent Transparancy International and the way it goes about its business here:

    If the matter was about the difference of few rankings then it could be debated, but the difference between India and Pakistan is HUGE! India is placed 87th while Pakistan is close to the bottom.

    “Indian labor and outsourcing is quickly being replaced by destinations like Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand etc.”

    –> For one thing, India is increasingly driven by domestic demand and this is becoming increasingly true over time. 3 years or even 2 years ago they used to say outsourcing jobs are moving to Phillipines and even Pakistan. I’ve worked in one of the biggest companies in the world and while I was there 300 jobs came from US, UK, Canada and Australia to India. The go live date was delayed as the other countries who were doing the same job as us could not get ready in time.

    So, it is not only the costs which are a driver here but quality too. I can give many such examples.

    TCS hired 50k people this year and the world is supposed to be recovering from Recession.

    Just because the city looks poor doesn’t mean that jobs are not getting generated or the growth is not happening.

    “India’s strength is still largely its NRI population and I know a number of people who have literally abandoned their businesses in India.”

    –> I know a number of people who had settled in the West but came back to India. So, whats your point? One such family lives right in front of my house. I have worked even in companies which are start ups and that has grown tremendously now and the majority projects they were getting was from within India.Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii
    Nov 26, 2010 - 2:09PM

    People here are still patriotically seeing things of Pakistan economoy. And Blindly comparing Indian Economoy. Also they are comparing Indian Financial sectors , FDIs etc., without knowing the various intricacies of it. All those pakistanis particularly should know that, even though with large economic engagement and business entiwinement with EU and USA, Indian economy has been relatively unaffected by the 2009 recession. This was mainly due to robostness in economy and tighter financial controls.
    And somebody was commenting on opening business in India, It depends on which sector you are going to. I can see Small scales coming up without much ado or involvement of Govt. organisations in most Indian states. If you are thinking of bigger projects, yes every country has its priorities, especially when globally people are more aware of Environmental clearance, protection laws, etc.,
    I think Pakistan has still not reached the stage of stopping projects based on environmental clearance….
    India is on path of becoming a green economy.Recommend

  • muhammed
    Nov 26, 2010 - 2:15PM

    what this guy Shafqat saying about Tamil nad .low quality IT people ? .Chennai hosts one of the formidable IT talent with highly skilled engineering graduates sucked into IT workforce . I can challenge any naive pakistani to visit our IT complexes in Tamil nad and see for yourself the projects from British Airways,GE,American Foodstamp govermnet projects and much more ..Just ask any IT guy who will give inside view.

    Also dont bring religion into it . Me (Muslim) ,my friends (hindus(all castes),christians) work together in key critical projects and deliver it successfully and earn the name as IT power … You Pakistanis remove the hatred towards india (hindooooooooos ) and think there are devout muslims like me in plenty in this great country India . Channelise your energy in education and peace and heaven sake until 10 years from now dont look at India that is the medicine for your quick recovery…Recommend

  • Anoop
    Nov 26, 2010 - 3:21PM


    You talk about Samjhota Express blasts but fail to notice that Indians were the one who told you guys that a extremist group from India is behind this and not one of yours. We did not wait for you to send dossier after dossier and dismiss it as mere information, like you guys did with our dossiers. And, unlike the leader of the group which attacked Mumbai, the leader is in Jail right now, not out there giving speeches.

    India arrested him and is prosecuting him because that is the right thing to do. LeT leader is protected by Pakistan and even after UN Security Council has designated him a Terrorist, he is roaming free. FYI, even US and EU have designated him as a global terrorist.

    So, please there is clearly no comparison between India and Pakistan when it comes to dealing with Terror.

    “No Pakistani paper has ever launched a hate campaign against India.”

    –> Ok. Open up Pakistan Observer and The Nation and read the editorials and columns. Show which major newspaper from India is “launching a hate campaign” as you claim? Show me one, I challenge you.

    Most Urdu Newspapers in Pakistan spew venom against non-Muslims, Hindus,jews and Christians in particular.

    “Kasab and his likes could easily be hired and brain washed by outside agents like David Headley (who worked for the FBI).”

    –> If that is the case then why did the Pak government admit of Kasab’s involvement and asking his statements from India? Why are there 7 people from Pakistan in its jails for Mumbai attacks.

    Forget all that, tell me why UN Security Council has designated LeT and JuD as banned for Terrorism in India? Why did US designate FIF(or something), as affiliate of LeT, as a Terror Organization?

    Please get your head out of the sand. UN,US,EU and India are wrong and Pakistanis like you are correct, who have absolutely no information about anything.

    Pakistanis talk about UN Security Council resolutions a lot, but fail to notice such resolutions which exposes them.Recommend

  • Waqas
    Nov 26, 2010 - 3:46PM

    @ Anoop and other Indians

    Comparing Pakistan with India is an bigger insult to Pakistan.

    For other Indians who continue to bury their head in the sand…saying there is no problem in India better go and read reports from UN, FAO, WHO and others which put Indian poor worse off than sub saharan countries. You guys have selective memory and reading. For a better and unbiased angle see what Ms Roy has to say, and she is one of you.

    I really feel for you guys, if this is the pathetic level of intelligence of internet savvy indians, what can i say about a common indian? Recommend

  • Cherish Raj
    Nov 26, 2010 - 4:33PM

    You are still holding on to the 1950s. Most of the Pakistanis do not have any idea of the India which exists down south. I come from the state of Kerala, which is 65% Hindu. In the present state government, both the industry minister and the local administration minister is Muslim. Our finance minister, transport minister and education minister are Christians. Our chief minister belongs to a so called backward community. During the turn of the previous administration, our chief minister, revenue minister and water resource minister were Christians. Our industry, education, public works and local administration ministers were Muslims. The defense minister of India ( FYI our armed forces are under civilian control) is a Christian, elected by the people of Kerala. The state of Tamil Nadu is ruled by a party whose primary base is the so called lower caste people. The chief minister of India’s biggest state( it is bigger than Brazil!) is a Dalit and the chief minister of the third biggest state, Bihar is also from a so called lower caste background. Our prime minister himself is a Sikh. I can give you examples of numerous other chief ministers and powerful politicians who come from under privileged backgrounds. Who are the Brahmins you talk about? We do not discriminate between Hindu and Muslim terrorists. The people who bombed the Samjhotha express are terrorists, We do not take pride in calling them ‘non state’ actors or ‘strategic assets’ even if Kasab turns out to be Amar Singh.Recommend

  • Waqas
    Nov 26, 2010 - 5:48PM

    @ Mr. Cherish

    I am amused at your comment that India’s biggest state is bigger than Brazil. As per international atlas:

    India’s total area is 3,201,446 sq kms (7th largest country)

    Brazil’s Total area is 8,514,877 Sq kms (5th largest country)

    So Brazil can conveniently absorb two Indias and still have room left. This just shows Indians live in some other planet completely off from reality… Bravo, do you have any other such data to share with us.

    How can I believe the rest of what you said?Recommend

  • Cherish Raj
    Nov 26, 2010 - 7:52PM


    When somebody talks about the chief minister of a state, we talk about the population and not the land area. It is not surprising that you are not used the language of a democracy. Anyway, there are only a few genuine democratic countries in Asia and two of them are in South Asia- India and Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh is catching up.

    You were talking about the intelligence of middle class Indians.Please take a look at this article

  • Cherish Raj
    Nov 26, 2010 - 8:05PM


    You can also watch the Dunya TV program ( 13th November 2010) Policy Matters, to know more about the Indian human capital. You can listen to your own Sherry Rehman accepting that,
    “We do not have the numbers to match their human capital”Recommend

    Nov 26, 2010 - 8:24PM

    I read this paper for the first time and was impressed with some of the articles. Some facts have been stated in the above article regarding corruption in India but it would be unfair to compare this country with Pakistan. Indian economy is growing at the rate of 9 percent which is expected to cross ten next year. Unfortunately Pakistan is investing more in terrorism against India than its economy which has backfired. So thats the difference.. Recommend

  • Arijit Sharma
    Nov 26, 2010 - 9:27PM

    I have one question for Muslim Pakistanis – Any comments on the train load of Hindus that were FIRST burnt by Muslim thugs that – lead to the Gujarat communal violence ? Recommend

  • muhammed
    Nov 26, 2010 - 9:31PM

    Waqas , Ofcourse Cherish raj made a mistake saying Brazil is smaller than on of India’s state when India itself is smaller than Brazil .But that is geography knowledge which err ed . But look at the Ministers background he has given all are facts .Check it in google if it is not banned in your country . Take the positive feeling he is conveying to you .Terrorists are terrorists ..there is no religion in it . You think Muslims are scared of RSS ? you should be brainwashed by your news channel. RSS at the max can protest with sticks and break windows .But look at your extremist ..they come to the mosque and blow your family up to smithereeens.. Generally RSS are trained to be self defensive that too with sticks only . Look for peace with neighbours and in the judgement day you will be rewarded .If you cant believe me too as a devout muslim saying to you as a bro then do some more prayers ..Allah will cleanse your mind! Inshallah!Recommend

  • Anoop
    Nov 26, 2010 - 10:51PM

    “saying there is no problem in India better go and read reports from UN, FAO, WHO and others which put Indian poor worse off than sub saharan countries. ”

    You are talking about pure numbers, talk about percentages. To talk about such reports Pakistan is considered Terror Central and you have the gall to say that you are insulted by comparing. Anyway, I’ll take solace in the fact that Pakistan will consume itself because of people like you.

    “For a better and unbiased angle see what Ms Roy has to say, and she is one of you.”

    –> Read the whole God damned world has to say about Pakistan. When was an International event held in Pakistan? India has its share of problems but its progressing forward every single day. Pakistan is going back to 12th Century.

    World has clubbed Pakistan with Afghanistan. You are right, Pakistan and India should not be compared. Afghanistan is the right country to compare it with. Everyone is already doing it. The name Af-Pak comes to mind.Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Nov 27, 2010 - 9:53AM


    I am impressed with you sir, my heart feeling for you when you said that you are a victim of 26/11. Allah will bless you with peace and happieness.


  • Waqas
    Nov 27, 2010 - 5:17PM

    @ Cherish

    You should say you always use the Indian yardstick to compare i.e. whichever higher, population or area. And since when the population is democratic way? I know how your democracy works so stop fooling yourself and others.

    @ Anoop

    Are your comparing reports of unbiased UN or internationally reputed organisations versus those ‘planted’ in the media and most probably bank rolled by Indians? This again shows the level of immaturity Indians are diseased with. I always thought of Indians being level headed but I see when Pakistan is mentioned, your views are extremely biased. You guys conveniently choose the figure which gives a better picture, absolute numbers in some and percentages in the other – whichever is lower!

    This Indian mentality of ‘sexing up’ the reports/ number fudging is purely aimed at creating a false sense of superiority – which is evident at this forum as well. In your mind, India is the best and nothing can be wrong here; its always the other side which has a problem. You pride on democracy however support the Burmese junta (see what Suu Kyi has to say about you). You support Tibeteans but suppress if Kashmiris. So hypocritical

    Pakistan going to 12th century is your wish; I know many in India are frustrated with the fact that we survived the partition and are prospering as a nation despite the high threat level we face from India. We are proud of our achievements and our resolve becomes tough with every crisis; unfortunately I dont see the same from India. In any crisis, India and Indians cry hoarse.Recommend

  • Cherish Raj
    Nov 27, 2010 - 6:46PM

    Demo means people and it is natural to talk about population while referring to a democracy. It is not about handpicking numbers.You can stick to your definition by which Canada is the largest democracy. We do not mind. To prove our democratic credentials we do not have to be nosy and interfere in the affairs of all the countries in the world. We are not on a democratic missionary. We do not want to interfere in Myanmar just because a US president suggested so. We are neither America’s closest non NATO ally nor are we on its payroll. Suu Kyi and her struggle have the moral support of India. India does not have a problem with Pakistan surviving or prospering. On the other hand, we do not accept the underlying concept of Pakistan’s statehood-the two nation theory. But that does not mean that we do not accept Pakistan. All countries that accept China do not have to subscribe to communism. Being a multi cultural/religious country we cannot accept the two nations theory and it is your generals and mullahs who have spread the notion that since we do not agree with your ideology, we, by default, do not accept Pakistan’s statehood. And it was always Pakistan who had attacked India, on all four occasions. The threat you feign is just a fabrication of your army/mullahs and a euphemism for intolerance towards a Hindu population. Unfortunately, that feeling has seeped into the Pakistani society. Lastly, we know how to handle our crisis and we are concerned when your general mullah brigade inflict mindless violence on our innocent people because of the above said euphemism.Recommend

  • Abhinav
    Nov 27, 2010 - 9:34PM

    I don’t know why my India friends are so worked up here. I think we are being sentimental here. No point in keeping our head in sand. Don’t get fooled by statistics, Pakistan is better than India in many terms. They are moving very fast towards making Paksitan land of their dreams. I hope the speed gets double in coming years.Recommend

  • Waqas
    Nov 28, 2010 - 12:25PM

    Lastly, we know how to handle our crisis

    We can see this in Kashmir, how you are adept in handling crisis? Any other best practice in crisis management that we can learn from you guys?Recommend

  • Anonymous
    Nov 29, 2010 - 7:29AM

    Waqas, atleast we are better in handling it than you people, (Remember East Pak?)Recommend

  • Shoaib Muhammad Khan
    Nov 29, 2010 - 9:59AM

    I hope many of you wont mind having a read.Recommend

  • Waqas
    Nov 29, 2010 - 12:03PM

    @ Cherish & Anonymous

    Your bubble continues to grow like your egos. Even the link provided by Shoaib would elicit extreme responses from you I am sure.

    These locked mindsets are reminiscent of what you guys are constantly fed from your government and jingoist media. India has always been the provocateur in all its wars. And always drags its feet on key issues. Can you tell me which neighbor does India have good friendly relations with? China, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh…. ?

    Our army’s posture is always defensive, and the reason for all the wars has been Kashmir, which until resolved will take countless lives on both sides in the future as well. Until this is realized, there will always be turmoil in the region.

    But I guess India needs an enemy (Pakistan) to keep their divided country together. Without Pakistan, India federation would cease to exist. This is a hard fact!Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Nov 29, 2010 - 4:37PM


    India with China :-
    India-China trade to cross $120 billion by 2012‎

    India with Srilanka
    India opens consulate in Jaffna, launches Northern Railway line‎

    India with Bangladesh
    Bangladesh–India relations – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    What else you want, nowadays in multi polar world, it is the trade which matters. Can you flash Pakistan’s trade figures with its neighbours, pathetic.Recommend

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