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EEC at the National Media Centre A more liberated TN… Intellectual of rare qualities He saved millions from starvation... An enemy’s enemy is a friend IPL type auction for VCs? Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Cutting the nose to spite the face Permanent secretariat for TN GIM Tatas moving out of urea production... Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... Funding the un-funded Solar thermal shines… Readers' Mail Fortune for Indian Airlines Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai Contrarian cousins Gas is the way forward Remembering Indira Sivasailam... Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! Recognition to role of NBFCs.... The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Build close rapport with business leaders Lalu’s envy, India’s pride Protest masters... Silver Years of Madras Musings There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! The why of tax incentives Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... Maximising the micro pricing … S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Building loyalty through the stomach Quality silica from Neyveli Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai How Air-India loses customs... Adharma of opposition politics For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Tatas moving out of urea production... A proud Madrasi Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik Strengthen the base... The few handicaps... IAS invades NDDB... Wanted: a second airport for Chennai Quality education through the PPP mode Paytm karo... 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Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks For whom the bell tolls? When small is no larger beautiful.. A rich pool of talent not utilised…. to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara Boy, can you beat these? Five star activism stalls development activity No Maha Koottani in TN... Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Don’t seem to feel the pulse… When online building permits work…. Discoms deserve better… Nuclear power at the nucleus Which side are you, Montek? Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... 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Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil?

In just around a decade, real estate prices have zoomed: in  Chennai, the price of a flat in a multi storeyed building has increased from an average of around Rs 1250/sq.ft to Rs 12,000/sq.ft. Sadly, there is not much effort to look into the why of this and take corrective action.

I  am citing   a couple of instances related to common products – light fixtures and water taps – as examples of the gay abandon in jacking up prices unrelated to costs:

Chinese products dominate the light fixtures market. As in the case of toys and several other products, these seem to have driven out small-scale units from Delhi, Mumbai and elsewhere. The prices are arbitrary with no warranty and they are subjected to the whims and fancies of the trader. Five months ago, such a light fixture with the bulb and fuse system was offered for Rs 520 a piece. In November, this has been increased to Rs 720. The CFL bulb is priced at a whopping Rs 330. When such bulbs are claimed to have long life, a few of these last just a couple of hours and the consumer is not entitled for a free replacement.

Jaquar has earned a reputation for quality pipe fittings. Hardly, three months ago, such a fitting was sold for Rs 720. Today, the price has been jacked up to Rs 950. The material content in such a pipe is only a few grams of steel. There is no explanation for such steep increases effected by the day.  There is simultaneous increase in the price of every component of construction materials -  sand, cement and  steel...

Are we on the path of the Latin American countries, which are in the grip of uncontrolled inflation?

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