Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A top Indian bureaucrat and a diplomat meet Obama’s cabinet colleague to discuss about municipal bond, PPP etc.

FAMILIAR with photo ops of an US bureaucrat meeting top Indian leaders? Yes, the reverse too has become a reality now. A top Indian bureaucrat, urban development secretary M Ramachandran and one of the senior most diplomats, Indian ambassador to US Meera Shankar recently met a senior colleague of US president Barack Obama, and discussed a whole range of issues including municipal bond market and public private partnership among others.
Mr Ramachandran and Ambassador Shankar took up a number of issues like urban sanitation and energy efficiency with Shaun Donovan, secretary in US department in housing and urban development. Mr Donovan’s rank is equivalent to a minister in India.
In fact, Mr Ramachandran who single-handedly initiated a big-ticket loan from the World Bank during his US visit last year, has now made a serious attempt to hard-sell Indian cities to big US investors. In addition to packaging India’s urban story to US companies, over-enthusiastic Mr Ramachandran invited Peter M Rogoff, administrator of US Federal Transit Administration to visit an urban mobility conference to be held in Delhi only in December 3-5, 2010. Yes, the conference will take place five months after he retires as urban development secretary!
(In picture: Mr Ramachandran addressing a gathering of India US Business Council in mid-January, 2010)
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  1. Is M Ramachandran going to be the next cabinet secretary? Any idea, babu blogger?

  2. Its very much required for urban sanitation in India. Mr Ramachandran atleast u make us free from taking hankerchief while walking in the streets of India.

  3. Dear Editor,

    There was no need for Mr Ramachandran and his cronies to get tips from Obama’s aides on modern Sanitation systems in India. All those who have failed in removing the shanties from prime areas of Delhi like Lodhi Colony, Defence Colony, R.K. Puram and so on.., how could they provide or set up sanitation system for big cities in the country. Lopsided and shallow planning and thinking would only lead to moving with handkerchief on your nose. Its only throwing dust and ash in the eyes of innocent people. No dearth of experts on this country who could advise them on these matters. But who listens to them. So many like Ramachandran have come and gone but things almost remain standstill. It’s merely a cozy tour on government expenses to promote one’s own interest.