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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 13 December 2018

There is nothing shocking about India's telecoms verdict

Readers discuss VAT, the Louvre Abu Dhabi and India's latest verdict

A Raja, India's former telecom minister, after he was acquitted in New Delhi in the 2G spectrum case. EPA
A Raja, India's former telecom minister, after he was acquitted in New Delhi in the 2G spectrum case. EPA

Most Indians are stunned and shocked by the judgment of India's special court acquitting all of the accused in the 2G telecoms case. The judge ruled that there was no scam. So Indians now ask: when there was so much smoke, where was the fire? Perhaps the noise and din was created by the spin doctors of various political parties. Perhaps the $27 billion deficit was caused by the way the licenses had been allocated, not through the misappropriation of funds. The coalition government wanted to expand the telecoms sector in 2008 and sought rapid sector expansion rather than pure revenue generation. Therefore, many people were swayed into believing that politicians pocketed the money but we mustn't forget that tardy execution of general sales tax and other legislation, in addition to these allocations, is what caused the economy to suffer.

Rajendra Aneja, Dubai

It took an incredible team to build the Louvre Abu Dhabi

I refer to your article UAE news year in review: the most important stories of 2017 (December 26). As The National had so well depicted in articles about the Louvre Abu Dhabi as it was constructed over the years, the implementation of its very intricate design could not have been a more complicated process. Project officials met the world’s most stringent museum requirements in terms of UV deflection and environmental and security standards. The museum was built to fulfill a 100-year lifespan under tight budgetary constraints. As was well-documented and universally acknowledged internationally, the Jean Nouvel design of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is certainly inspiring and deserving of all the accolades it has received. As we celebrate this world wonder of a museum, let's also acknowledge the equally impressive determination dedication and contributions of its builders.

David Rupp, Dubai

VAT would do well to target businesses more equitably

In reference to your article With just days to go until VAT comes in, many businesses are still unprepared (December 26), VAT is a pass-the-parcel impost, the cost of which ends up being incurred by the consumer and often results in the least able bearing the largest burden. Globally, VAT strangles small businesses in favour of corporates, who often shift money internationally and end up paying little or no net tax. One glance at the sclerotic European Union should have been enough to demonstrate that this tax may not be the best of options for smaller economies.

Andrew Preston, Abu Dhabi

Let's read as we watch, shall we?

I refer to your article Subtitles improve reading skills in India (December 27). The article elaborately explains the advantages of having subtitles in the same language. The UAE has many subtitled films in cinemas. In an era of scarce reading, this has become a luxury.

K Ragavan, India