Where is the promised windfall from demonetisation?

The Economic Survey 2016/17 was striking not only for its literary references, but also for its circumspect nature. One of major the drivers of this circumspection (which is not a trait one associates with the Narendra Modi government) was the yet-to-be-ascertained impact of demonetisation. The Economic Survey was cautious in saying that it would take … Continue reading Where is the promised windfall from demonetisation?

An important transfer of power in Ghana

Ghana has been different from many of its contemporary African nations especially in terms of its ability to see through peaceful transitions of power since 1992. Often, the credit for this is given to former President JJ Rawlings, who after being responsible for two military coups (1979, 1981), stood for democratic elections in 1992, and … Continue reading An important transfer of power in Ghana

The battle against corruption should not end here

Since the 8th of November when the government declared that 500 and 1000 rupee notes were no longer legal tender, there has been much talk about the need for ordinary citizens to join the battle against corruption. Rather dramatically, Prime Minister Narendra Modi too announced from the pulpit, his resolve to continue battling corruption even … Continue reading The battle against corruption should not end here

Judith Tendler, and learning from ‘good government’

On 24th July 2016, Judith Tendler, former Professor at the Department of Urban studies and Planning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Boston, passed away. She was 77. A Ph.D from Columbia University, Judith Tendler spent several years at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), before a long career as a Professor … Continue reading Judith Tendler, and learning from ‘good government’

‘Achhe din’ giving BJP a miss?

The excuses are running thin; The photoshop has lost novelty; The joke is on us; When will ‘Achhe din’ come? - my latest livemint column *** I watched the video clip of Union minister Nitin Gadkari’s disarmingly candid chat in mid-September, where he talks about the origins of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) slogan—‘achhe din aayenge’ (good days … Continue reading ‘Achhe din’ giving BJP a miss?

India @ 70: time to stop being complacent about our democracy

For the seventieth time since independence, India celebrated its incredible democracy on 15th August 2016. There are several theories for why India is such an implausible democracy, and our ability to be an exception in a troubled neighbourhood evokes great nationalistic fervour. However, this celebration of our democracy sometimes distracts us from taking a hard … Continue reading India @ 70: time to stop being complacent about our democracy

Does the BJP need to rein in Narendra Modi?

Since May 2014, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government has been running in fits and starts. Some stalwarts keep themselves busy spinning tales and lawyerly arguments to defend the government and defame the opposition, quite forgetting that it is this reliance on moralistic rhetoric that partly led to the fall of the United Progressive Alliance-II … Continue reading Does the BJP need to rein in Narendra Modi?