The Union Budget proposal for a Sovereign Bond by India in the international markets might have come a cropper along with its “sherpa”, Subhash Garg, our former finance secretary. Why the rush? It was never apparent why the government chose to announce in the Budget speech this year, out of the blue, almost as […]Read More Sovereign Bond Issue in “thanda basta”
Budget FY 2020, tabled on July 5 in Parliament, unintentionally unleashed a “whodunnit” type mystery with serious downstream negative fiscal impacts. The snafu was spotted by eagle-eyed economists Ratin Roy, director of the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, and Nitin Desai, a previous Chief Economic Advisor, within hours of the tabling of the […]Read More Budget 2019-20 “malfunction” spoils the show
Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman made history merely by standing up to present the Union Budget on Friday — being India’s first full-time woman FM to do so. True to the forceful style of the BJP, she delivered the speech with zeal and conviction to the loud thumping of desks by the treasury benches with a […]Read More Nirmala Sitharaman hits all the right buttons for a balanced budget
Modi 1.0 was all about learning the ropes of national governance. Budget preparation and execution is a key ingredient. Budget purists cavil that budgets under Modi 1.0 were high on fuzzy motherhood goals and discretionary expenditure but low on schematic, multiplier enhancing allocations. Arun Jaitley’s five years as FM Rhetoric and poetry are part of […]Read More Budget FY2020 – Marching to a different drum beat
We are all of the “buy and forget” generation, which expects not to be distracted from its primary focus — be it mere survival or amassing wealth; remaining young forever; spirituality; saving the planet from self-destruction or just studying to score a perfect 100 per cent in the exams. This extreme focus leaves little time […]Read More Can Modi 2.0 cater to the bindaas Vote and Forget generation?
“Shoot and scoot” is a phrase made popular by the Bofors field gun – infamous in India, for the alleged corruption in its acquisition. But a winner in performance. Raghuram Rajan – “Shoot & scoot” Governor RBI Four decades later, the phrase became applicable to the rock star Governor of the RBI, Raghuram Rajan. He […]Read More Arvind Subramanian – a “scoot & shoot” economist
Finance high table – not a man’s world anymore There is a heady feeling to being India’s finance minister. Finance is fungible, unlike other factors of production — including the ubiquitous “ahlu” in North Indian cuisine — which gives it the centrality others lack. FM as Magic Maker This unique status of the FM also […]Read More Make the Union Budget credible again
It’s a terrible time to be a minister in the Union government. The economy is tanking under the weight of debt funded public expenditure and low private investment due to the lacklustre consumer demand. Private corporate headline growth is low on the back of low capacity utilisation, which hits government tax revenues adversely and casts […]Read More Modi 2.0: Time for frugal good governance
Nirmala Sitharaman has notched up a record merely by taking over as Finance Minister in the Modi 2.0 government. She will be the first woman to hold this position as a stand-alone charge. Indira Gandhi was the first woman Finance Minister in 1970-71. But she was already Prime Minister and assumed the position from Finance […]Read More Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman – an avatar of Durga or Laxmi?
The 2019 election results illustrated the transformative political and social changes sweeping India. Will the new Narendra Modi government adapt its economic policies to fit the changed expectations or will it dish out more of the same? The honeymoon is over The 2014 Budget was expectedly a laundry list of good intentions. Five years down […]Read More Modi 2.0 Different Economic Strokes?