The divestment saga of Central Electronics (CEL) deserves more attention than it is getting.
The broad details are well known enough. The public sector undertaking (PSU), founded in 1974 to commercially exploit technologies developed by national laboratories and indigenous R&D institutions, briefly hit the headlines last November when the Narendra Modi government announced its sale to Delhi-based Nandal Finance and Leasing for Rs 210 crore.
In the three months that have followed, the government has not only attracted charges of under-valuing CEL, a link between the only two bidders who participated has surfaced. The sale has been consequently challenged not only before the Delhi high court but also before the Lokpal. For its part, the government has put the sale on hold, saying it will study the complaint about the two bidders knowing each other.
This, however, is just the start.