Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The"Raja-Praja" Ethos of India

Satyam Infosystems Owner, CEO and majority shareholder B Ramalinga Raju resigns as expected. Also as expected much controversy and comments follow - 

Rediff reports -
"Years after the foreign media wondered if Americans should be afraid of Ramalinga Raju more than Osama Bin Laden beacuse of jobs they lost to India, experts said on Wednesday the fear seems to have come true, although for a different reason.

Raju has certainly inflicted a huge blow to the India story on the global business arena and the companies across the world would be much more vigilant before engaging any Indian company for their business purposes," said an analyst.

Way back in 2004, American media had reported that it was not only dreaded terrorist Osama whom the Americans were afraid of, but Raju was a feared man too as millions of jobs were being outsourced to Indian companies like Satyam" [link]

The irony here is like Osama, Raju too may be able to escape the law.

The issue here is Corporate Governance. 

As pointed out here "the problem in the Indian corporate sector, is that of disciplining the dominant shareholder and protecting the minority shareholders, as it is vindicated in the recent Satyam case."

And in this case Mr. Raju is the end all and be all. Because he as majority shareholder misled the minority shareholders. Although he might brush off all allegations to his person, his attitude is endemic to people in power in India.

Be it politicians, industrialists, businessmen or for that matter anyone in any postion of power considers everything under them to be their kingdom. 

They "rule". 

They are the "Raja". The rest are the "Praja".

And their decree is the law. And if not then there is enough incentive provided to mould the law according to their needs. 

And the saddest part is that the Indian public wants it to stay that way.

And they say India is "free".


Iconoclast said...

Well said about the ruling class! I believe we Indians are born with the skill to rule when in power and be ruled when not...

But by far this is the worst Indian story that has happened in the post recession era. Hope the yankees don't make a hue and cry about it!!!

Abhishek said...

Ah!! Exactly the kind of line I was looking for ....
"the skill to rule when in power and be ruled when not"

That's the difference when you write to feed and not feed to write...

Iconoclast said...