Bengal, Kerala and Tamil Nadu — all awaiting new governments in early May this year — are the last bastions of strong linguistic and cultural regionalism which have resisted the mainstreaming of politics under BJPs “one country one party” theology. Assam capitulated in 2016 and is expected to remain within the BJP’s fold in May […]Read More Indian regionalism- past its expiry date
In Hong Kong, British style democracy is being nudged out by Sinicized democratic norms, where the Communist Party of China, and not citizens, determine the limits of democratic conventions. But it is not just China which feels compelled to sculpt the principles of classic, citizen-centric democracy to the objective conditions on the ground. Post-colonial Africa […]Read More Improbable democracies or impossible benchmarks
Amitabh Kant the CEO of NITI Ayog got a taste of the underside of celebrity status when his remark on there being “too much democracy in India” created a social media storm of protest. Mr. Kant clarified subsequently that the news coverage had omitted the latter part of his sentence “……. for it to be […]Read More Democratic overload
We have got used to being feted by the international community as a “rising great power”. This suits our exaggerated self-perception and the choreographed diplomatic dance of real Great Powers (US and EU) with China, truly, a risen great power, albeit increasingly not a benign one. Covid mirror The Covid epidemic has shown up all […]Read More Trudging up the recession gorge
The Modi government has its near-term challenges well defined – containing China, Covid and Congress in the order they are presented. The Congress bogey Of these, the last seems the most doable. The Congress lingers primarily because Indians are habituated to hedge their bets and have a back-up plan. Never put all your eggs in […]Read More Containing the 3Cs- China, Covid and Congress
On top of the BJP’s rudderless leadership to get the national economy out of a rut, or very possibly because of it, comes a humiliating political defeat in the Delhi Assembly elections with Arvind Kejriwal’s broom sweeping the Congress completely out of the capital’s politics and limiting the BJP to 8 out of the 70-member […]Read More BJP electrocuted after Delhi adopts muffler-man Kejriwal
It can’t be very gratifying being the Finance Minister when the International Monetary Fund is calling out India for being a growth laggard pulling down world growth in 2019 to 2.9 per cent (from 3.3 per cent forecast earlier) and in 2020 to 3.4 per cent (from 3.6 per cent forecast earlier). International Financial Institutions […]Read More Is India the global fall-guy?
In the run up to the annual budget it is said the Prime Minister is engaged in reviewing the working of departments in eleven hour long meetings. The PMs brand managers possibly think this nugget will comfort the nation that all is well, now that the man at the helm has his hand on the […]Read More Modi takes charge of the budget
Tough reform decisions are best taken in times of grave crisis not when the going is good. Economic reform, at the best of times, is highly disruptive. It makes little political sense, in the real world, to throw away the benefits of a stable, growing economy, in the hope that the future would be brighter […]Read More BJP needs a consistent Economic Ideology
The first 100 days of the Modi 2.0 government have been marked by lows and highs. Sadly, the lows are longer lasting, while the highs are transient, even in the short term. The biggest low was the Budget for FY 2019-20 in July, which was presented, in the absence of the late Arun Jaitley, with […]Read More Modi 2.0 100 not out!