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When feedstock change worked havoc... Birth of IE Travails and thrills... When comes such another! Hanuman jumps in auto, electronic technologies This foray into economic journalism... The white trigger at Erode Salem steel waiting for its sheen From the very beginning When fertilizer production shifted to North and West... Major storms during the explosive years The rise and fall of the Madras Press Club The green years The rise, fall and rise of India Cements Takeover tycoons... The unreal estate MY LOVE FOR AGRICULTURE Rise and fall of PVN... He took public sector to commanding heights... When Eicher bites the Bullet... Where a co-operative paid bonus; helped eradicate caste bias... When cooperatives pushed out private dairies... Green Jubilee for agricultural research Editorially reinforced and redesigned How Chennai missed the bus? (rail!) The sea change Remembering SV Hand composing to desk top publishing… Kurien visits Erode... A culture of R&D... Power progress Music, music everywhere… The slippery story of crude The years of consolidation, second bomb, and hope Budgets through the years… Mrs Gandhi storms back, MGR unshaken in his fortress
Budgets through the years…
The 15 March 1968 issue with which IE commenced publication, started with a detailed analysis of the budget presented for 1968-69. Thus, in our annual issues released in March, coverage of budget became an important feature.
THOSE WERE DAYS of economic journalism. The financial journals focused sharply on the budget and its implications. In P R Srinivas, former editor of Indian Finance, who worked with IE for a decade, economist Dr P S Lokanathan, the renowned stock broker Chitra S Narayanaswamy and P A Seshan of The Hindu provided rich material analysing the nuances of the budget. IE and myself benefited through these interactions and developed keen interest in fiscal issues. These expanded manifold from 1973 when IE was invited to attend the annual Economic Editors’ Conference organised by the Press Information Bureau. The three day conference inaugurated by the Union Finance Minister, followed by interactions with over a dozen ministers and other policymakers handling economic portfolios, used to be organised in mid-March soon after the presentation of the budget. Thus it provided a good opportunity to discuss the implications of the budget with policymakers and also with senior economic editors.

A tool to raise resources…

The controlled economy with severe limitations of resources and suffering acute shortage of foreign exchange, used the budget as a tool to raise resources. Tax proposals thus had a serious impact on prices. Intense lobbying for concessions or moderation was also the order of the day. Speculation and hoarding of commodities and products used to be rife before the budget. This was more widespread in the commercial capital Mumbai and the commodity metro Kolkata.

 For long, the portfolio of finance ministry was entrusted to political heavyweights like Morarji Desai, Y B Chavan... We also had these interspersed with leaders of keen finance acumen like Dr C D Deshmukh,T T Krishnamachari, Sachindra Chaudhuri, C Subramaniam and H M Patel. These vested the budget with a great deal of innovation.
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IE, the business magazine from south was launched in 1968 and pioneered business journalism in south. Through the 45 years IE has been focusing on well-presented and well-researched articles. When giants in the industry stumbled to keep pace with the digital revolution, IE stayed affixed embracing technology.
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