Deepawali depression unwarranted

Nothing makes Diwali sparkle more than the comforting bulge of spare cash in one’s pocket. This year there are few who could claim that privilege. Suffering in tandem are the unfortunates who catch the trickle lower downstream. Body blows to carefree spending have taken their toll. The combined effect of the Goods and Services Tax, […]

Read More Deepawali depression unwarranted

The Saffron brotherhood in 2024

No one knows why Prime Minister Modi chose to walk behind Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji’s funeral cortege till “Smriti Sthal” (the place of remembrances), where India’s top politicians – are usually cremated. Was it to bridge the gap between his actions and the principle of Raj Dharma (ethical rule) enunciated by Atalji in 2002? Was he […]

Read More The Saffron brotherhood in 2024

Pranab da mimics Atal ji

  The brouhaha over Mr Pranab Mukherjee’s visit to Nagpur, as the chief guest at a valedictory function of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), foregrounds the stunted nature of politics in India. Politics is about reaching out First, consider the absurdity of the prevailing schoolboy notion of “team” spirit extending to a ban on supping […]

Read More Pranab da mimics Atal ji

What Karnataka foretells

The tea leaves, following the Karnataka elections, are as muddied as they were before it — a hung House, a history of unstable coalitions and in your face examples of money power and shabby politics all around. Modi government a bell-weather for fiscal management The BJP not getting a majority has spooked the financial markets. […]

Read More What Karnataka foretells

Resurrecting ghosts is bad politics

One wonders whether Muhammad Ali Jinnah would have been disappointed or elated at a band of misguided, ultra-right Hindus, objecting to his portrait hanging in the students’ union office of the Aligarh Muslim University. Disappointment, at becoming a hate object, would fit well. the elegant, urbane man with a taste for fine suits, that Jinnah […]

Read More Resurrecting ghosts is bad politics

Lives dedicated to change India

This is not a glib account of mobilising the rural poor, penned by a peripatetic babu or a drive-in-fly-out development expert. It is, refreshingly, a record of activists, who elected to spend the better part of their working lives making a difference, bottom upwards, and three decades later remain rooted in their karmbhumi — village […]

Read More Lives dedicated to change India

What the cash crunch foretells

Conspiracy theorists are hard at work to identify the drivers behind the ongoing cash crunch, that has left the automated teller machines (ATMs) in cities and towns across large parts of the country dry. There is much finger pointing between the Reserve Bank of India and the commercial banks, both private and public sector, each […]

Read More What the cash crunch foretells

Junk policy for action

Policies mean very little, unless there is a national consensus behind them, because governments change in a democracy. Formulating a policy is a clunky, time- and effort-intensive, process. It should be attempted only if massive structural change is necessary. India has rarely been in the game of big bang reform. Our forte is incremental change. For this, key […]

Read More Junk policy for action

BJP self goals dim the shine

It is not often than an innocuous government statement becomes the fulcrum of a storm. The sudden announcement that Minister Nitin Gadkari’s plan to announce a policy for 100% electrification of transportation by 2030 was off the cards, sent shock waves through the industry and political analysts. Subsuming Gadkari’s proposed electric vehicle policy in a […]

Read More BJP self goals dim the shine