Should Corporate Political Lobbying Come under Scanner by Regulatory Mechanism?: Vaishnavi Corporate Communication and 2G Spectrum Scam:

S. Jayachandran (IIT Madras, India)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 240
EISBN13: 9781466649620|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4357-4.ch019
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Marketing is more political in the free market economy today than ever and firms need to apply social power and public relations either to enter into a new market or to operate more successfully in the existing market. Often, they apply reward power and political lobbying as marketing strategic tools. The Indian telecom market is booming fast and becoming highly competitive. Accordingly, there is an aggressively, rushed bid for 2G spectrum license. In the mean time, the telecom ministry’s decision of, “First come, First serve,” instead of an auction method, paved the way for political lobbying. At the end of 2G spectrum allocation, there was widespread allegation that the cellular operators fraudulently secured licenses from the telecom ministry by using power and public relations and in doing so played an important role on behalf of its clients. The apex court monitored the investigation of 2G scam and ordered cancelling of all licenses granted in 2008. This case raises four vital points for discussion as the backdrop of the changing marketing environment: 1.) Should marketing facilitating agents bother with the ideals of morality? 2.) Is it wrong that Vaishnavi Corporate Communication exploited weak and corrupt system of governance in favor of its clients? 3.) Are the actions of government watchdog agents justifiable, when an issue is concerned with public interest? 4.) Should political lobbying come under scanner by a regulatory mechanism to contain adverse implications of firms’ marketing strategy? If so, what should be the modus operandi of the regulatory mechanism?
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