Navneet Kalra is probably one of India’s most hated men at the moment. A businessman and restaurateur, who owns multiple restaurants like the famous Khan Chacha in Delhi, he is currently the target of a manhunt by the Delhi Police. A few days ago, his restaurants were raided by the police, who found a large stockpile of Oxygen Concentrators.
India is currently in the middle of a second wave of COVID-19. The second wave has been far deadlier than the first in terms number of cases but also in terms of death rate. Our healthcare system has effectively collapsed and its weakness has been bared for all to see. Medical oxygen was one of the first items to get scarce.
A narrative seems to be forming that this scarcity of medical oxygen is due to lack of regulations and black marketeers selling oxygen at high prices and that freeing the market would lead to more hoarding and higher prices.
What are you going to do when there is a third wave and the existing vaccines don't work, or if there is a new virus? and if they make a new vaccine for it, then do you want SII to wait for six months before they make it, because everyone wants to squeeze every single penny from their margins and not give them enough cash to finance future expansion/scale?
SII took a massive risk by starting manufacture of lakhs of vaccines even before there was any proof of their effectiveness. This was a massive gamble.
Indian Government is set to receive Rs 39,300 Crore for allocating spectrum to telecom giants. The companies involved are all bidding really high to get permission from the government to broadcast at a certain frequency using the equipment they own. I think it’s high time we recognize this allocation act for what it is – corporate welfare.