The price of fiscal exuberance

Politics is heating up. Elections in Bihar loom in November with Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu* and West Bengal tightly packed together in May next year, just after the FY 2021-22 budget. Bihar remains rural at heart. Luckily for the BJP, agriculture is the bright star in the Indian economy with expected growth of 3%. Doesn’t […]

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The migrant as folk hero

It is difficult not to eulogize the lonely migrant worker trudging his way home on deserted locked-down highways and sometimes not reaching his destination. Some of this is guilt because of the economic and physical hardships they are suffering. They have tugged at heart strings by risking death or injury just to get back to […]

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Needed tough love not freebies

Covid-19 has made the Bharat-India divide even sharper. The obsessive, 4G connected, masked and gloved urban Indian checking for updates and worrying about a post-Covid-19 future on the one hand and rural India, carrying on stoically as always, too busy with the daily mechanics of agricultural production to care overly about the “outside” world, except […]

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Use COVID to heal society

The bad news emanating from the slowing Indian economy over the last two years makes it counter-intuitive to imagine that COVID could be a blessing in disguise for halting the slow grind downwards.  A crisis is also an opportunity COVID is a crisis and India – all of it- including whataboutery experts, cynics and most […]

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Modi 2.0 100 not out!

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 […]

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Indian Economy – The great slide

It’s scarier going downhill than climbing to the top. Whilst on the way up, the heavyweight of inertia is known and hence manageable. Going downhill, inertia accelerates descent in unknown ways.  The economy is no different. Flab (public sector banks), poorly maintained brakes (uncompetitive private firms), worn gear cogs (lack of structural reforms) or inadequate […]

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