Rahul Gandhi’s electoral silver bullet to numb the BJP into relative disarray is a mega welfare scheme to transfer Rs 72,000 to each of the 50 million or 20 per cent of the poorest households. It costs Rs 3.6 trillion or 1.8 per cent of GDP. Mine versus yours The motivation is political – to […]Read More Nyay (Justice) yes! But at what cost?
India is a hyper-cauldron of politics and political parties. There are seven national parties, 24 regional parties and over 2,000 registered parties. Hypothesis One – Footloose voters turn to regional parties Churn is the new mantra. Voters are moving away from the national parties to regional parties even for the Lok Sabha elections. The vote […]Read More Holi special: 2019 elections voternama
The notion that a strident anti-Islam national sentiment can co-exist with India’s geopolitical ambitions is laughable. Strident Hinduism has no future. This should be self-evident. Just look at our geography. For 4,000 km to the west, till Sub-Saharan Africa; to the northwest till Eastern Europe and to the southeast of India through Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia […]Read More Indian election – Democratic Nationalism vs Communalism
The ritual halwa has been consumed in the cavernous basement of the Ministry of Finance and the budget printing team consigned incommunicado for the next ten days in a Byzantine tactic to maintain budget secrecy. Nothing illustrates the continuing “duality” of India than the fact that meanwhile the Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley remains deeply engaged […]Read More Interim Budget 2019 – style and substance
Four decades ago on January 16, 1979, Iran’s last “Persian” ruler Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi fled his palace near Tehran never to return, thus ending a divisive rule of nearly four decades. The fallout, which occasioned his political demise, was a mass outpouring of anger against entitled westernised elites; State led dilution of traditional cultures and lifestyles; […]Read More A Shah is born in India
Not so well-off upper caste Hindus, Muslims and Christians, who have so far not benefited from “reservations” or quotas, woke up last week to a pleasant surprise — they had all been included! Quota politics The Constitution (103rd Amendment) Act 2019, came into force from Monday. It provides for a 10 per cent additional reservation […]Read More Including the excluded class
In the most recent state assembly elections, the BJP lost. But given the centralised governance architecture of the BJP, so did Narendra Modi. The jury is out on the extent to which election losers heed advice directed gratuitously at them by opinion writers. But Mr Modi is credited to be a voracious internet fiend so […]Read More From assembly to the 2019 general election
History is written by the victors because they are the ones who survive and have “the force” with them. Last week the Central Statistics Office (CSO) of the Union government set the Yamuna on fire — not very difficult really, since it has more chemicals than water — by releasing the back series of the […]Read More Politics, lies or just GDP statistics
In a recent freebie on social media, McKinsey – an outrageously expensive US consultancy which spurns a fee below Rs 50 million for even the smallest task – shares lessons learnt by them for producing leaders. First, good health is critical – a no-brainer. Second, company programs to produce leaders mostly fail – this is […]Read More McKinsey can learn from Modi
It is a fashion of the times that officers of the elite Indian Administrative Service, Indian Police Service and Indian Foreign Service join political parties and get elected to public office. The civil service conduct rules, which require an officer to be apolitical, no longer apply once (s)he leaves government service. This approach is congruent […]Read More Are elite civil service cadres becoming training schools for politicians?