Economy

Economy

Issue Articles

Changing Modes of Agriculture in Punjab

The crises of Punjab’s agriculture are rooted in the same history that made it the granary of India. Ensuring sustainability for farmers and the farm sector requires an engagement with the shifting trajectories of agriculture over the last seven decades.

India’s Biggest Challenge: The Future of Farming

India has enough food; does it have too many people working in agriculture? The pressure on land is an outcome of policy, which condemns most people to marginal farming. India needs a different set of solutions for agriculture and for those working the land.

When Narratives Drive Economic Policy

The case of India's 2016 demonetisation
Demonetisation was not just an egregious act of cruelty but also an economic policy disaster. Yet, the successful use of popular narratives to sell the demonetisation story meant that the public did not make the government pay for this major folly.

Brand India and the Making of a New Citizenry

Branding projects to make India appear open for global business has entailed the production of an exclusionary image of the nation and a rewriting of the contract between citizens and state.

India’s Deregulated Dairy Sector Signposts the Future of Our Food

The result of the deregulation of the dairy sector holds a mirror to what would happen if the new farm laws were to be implemented in agriculture: an easing out of the small producer, greater inequality in consumption, and co-operatives replaced by monoliths.

Confirmation Bias on Overdrive in 'Economic Survey 2020-21'

The decline in the quality of what is supposed to be the premier annual economic policy document of the Government of India is a result of its authors playing to the gallery rather than offering careful analysis of the economy today.

The Wages of Low Public Spending on Child Nutrition Programmes

Stagnant government funding and mis-allocation of available resources in recent years are together resulting in limited improvements in levels of child nutrition, anaemia and mortality.

India and the Pandemic

The First Year
A collection of 24 essays on how India dealt with Covid-19 in 2020, published by Orient BlackSwan. The essays, with a detailed Introduction, cover the history of pandemics, the early stages, the lockdown, the law, impact on economy & society, and the future.

The Political Economy of Covid-19 Vaccines

Vaccine grabs, the refusal to relax patents to enable mass production, and the use of vaccines for diplomacy run the risk that poorer nations may not be protected against Covid-19 quickly enough. This will prolong the pandemic, even for the richer nations.

How (Not) to Fight Monopolies

Lessons from India’s Licence Raj
RK Hazari's landmark work on corporates in 1960s India holds lessons for contemporary questions on promoting small and medium firms and ensuring effective corporate governance. These questions are all the more crucial in times of rising income inequality.

Problems with the Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor

Is it time to abandon the programme?
The story of India’s Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor for close to two decades is one of rising costs, delays and the Department of Atomic Energy making never-ending promises of commissioning. Shouldn’t India then stop pursuing the breeder programme?

For A Bahujan Economics

A Personal Statement
Bahujan students face hostility in universities but they cannot give up. They must fight to assert their identity, reject being called “non-meritorious” and master their subjects. One scholar recounts her struggle and demands a more compassionate Economics.

India’s Privatisation Drive

Be careful what you wish for
The case for privatisation is based on the belief that the private sector is more efficient, and that public sector units do better when in private hands. But what does the evidence tell us? These are issues to ponder as India embarks on a major sell-off.

Indian Banking Reforms

Talking Tokyo, Looking London?
With most of India’s attempts to reform its financial sector rolled back post demonetisation, the country could soon be facing a possible solvency crisis amongst state-run banks. The government must quickly return to its early reforming zeal.

Learning from Crises

The Evolution of Indian Banking Regulation
India's banking regulation has come this far through a process of learning from a series of bank failures in the last century. But it might not be adequate to meet present and future threats.

‘Mere Paas Sarkaar Hai’

State Intervention in Indian Agriculture: Why it is needed and how it must change
The uniqueness of agriculture calls for continued & not less government intervention. Reform of Indian agriculture is needed, but this must be to enhance state capacities and strengthen regulatory oversight. What would be a “better government that is better”?

What Did You Do in the Last 24 Hours?

Some reflections on India’s first Time Use Survey in historical perspective
The first nation-wide survey of the time spent by men and women on various activities during all 24 hours of the day brings out the gender inequalities in the work that each of them do.

The Time Is Right for an Urban Employment Guarantee Programme

Urban workers have been the most badly hit by Covid-19. An employment guarantee would provide income support & also improve urban public services. Criticisms that it is unaffordable & that it will have a negative impact on the private sector are not valid.

The Three Farm Bills

Is This the Market Reform Indian Agriculture Needs?
The rules of the game in markets have changed dramatically. But there are problems with the fundamental premise of the approach, there are doubts about the future of state intervention & there are major lacunae in the bills, all making the outcome uncertain.

The Silent Takeover of Labour Rights

The three new labour codes passed by Parliament without discussion make sweeping changes to labour laws; they reduce the regulatory powers of the government; they hand over some oversight functions to third parties, and, all in all, disempower labour.

Understanding India’s Economic Slowdown

Need for Concerted Action
The bust of the 2010s after the boom of the 2000s can be repaired only by an investment revival that is led in good part by the public sector. But one must first have a clear idea of what lies behind the slump and acknowledge the depth of the crisis.

Knowns and Unknowns in the Covid-triggered Global Economic Crisis

The traditional toolbox of fiscal and monetary measures will not help deal with the exogenous shock given by Covid-19 to the global economy. In these unknown waters for now the state can at best ramp up medical services and devise proper relief for the poor.

Comorbidities of the Indian Economic Recovery

The comorbidities of falling investment, exports, and consumption will make recovery look like the Nike swoosh logo: a flat and protracted recovery. A series of measures, including a rebuilding of trust, are required for sustained economic growth.
No more articles!
Back to Top