Consider first the matter of the raging food price inflation in the country.
Instead of strengthening the public distribution system to counter local speculation and provide affordable choices for the people, the official position has been to blame inadequate existing distribution chains - focusing on their inefficiency, rather than on any speculative pressures that could also affect supply.
This has become the most popular interpretation of the ongoing food crisis in the corridors of power and their stenographers in the financial press.
This has consequently led to the demand that modern corporate retail chains (ideally with FDI) be brought in to manage food distribution. It is argued that this will reduce wastage in storage and costs of transport of food items, cut out intermediaries in distribution and provide food more effectively to consumers at lower prices.
Of course this argument is rather foolish, at several levels.
Image: Opposition activists are seen venting their anger against Congress President Sonia Gandhi during a protest against hike in prices of essential commodities in Hyderabad in this file photo.