February 5, 2021

February 5, 2021

Issue Articles

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.

Dharma and Caste in the Mahabharata

Some episodic suggestions
The Mahabharata is peopled by the ‘higher’ castes but there are important personages from the ‘lower’ castes whose presence gives a radical salience to ‘dharma’ as set out in the epic, to the point of even suggesting a subversion of the dominant ideology.

A Sense of a Community

A Journey of Shared Mourning during Moharram
'The shared expression among women majlis during Moharram of an iconic grief that is both personal and communal seems to create a community of women who mourn, who share a sense of the lives of women in the past, and of their lives now.’

The Promise of India: Recalling Dadabhai Naoroji

A new biography brings to the fore Dadabhai Naoroji’s activities in India and England for self-rule and his early socialist and anti-racist thought. It places the ‘Father of Indian Nationalism’ among the leading non-European thinkers and reformers of the time.

Elections, Populism and the ‘Supreme Leader’

The Rise of Authoritarian Democracies
The structure of a democracy has elements that can enable the rise of a strong political executive. We are now witnessing many elected leaders across the world draw upon ‘people’s will’ & aspirations to transform their states into authoritarian democracies.

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”?

Covid-19 Accelerates the Transformation of India's Newspaper Industry

India’s newspapers grew by relying on advertising, a dependence that began to unravel before the pandemic struck. Dailies have shut down and journalists have lost jobs. To revive their fortunes, they are now—belatedly—trying to build incomes from digital.

Love Taboos: Controlling Hindu-Muslim Romances

The myth of ‘love jihad’ is sustained through widely circulated illustrations of ‘lustful’ Muslim men and ‘victimised’ Hindu women. These images recirculate decades-old calumnies and make invisible Hindu men’s regulation of Hindu women.


Shamsur Rahman Faruqi (1935-2020)

The last time I saw Shamsur Rahman Faruqi was in early December. Suffering from post Covid complications, his body was...

A Regulator for Social Sector Organisations?

A late 2020 newspaper report suggested that the government is considering a proposal to set up a regulator for charities...

Andhra's Borewell Scheme could Democratise Agrarian Distress

In July 2020, the Andhra Pradesh government announced a scheme for free borewells for eligible small and marginal farmers. The...

Letters on February 5 Issue

On 'Mere Paas Sarkaar Hai'
The article by Mihir Shah (‘Mere Paas Sarkaar Hai’, 18 January 2021) is rich in observations and includes lines of...

Strengthening the MSP System: A Solution to Resolve the Farm Crisis

Arguments against a statutory minimum support price (MSP) have hovered around the following lines: The MSP benefits only a small proportion of...

Why Only the UP Law on Inter-Faith Marriages is Creating Turmoil

The havoc in the lives of Hindu-Muslim couples now being witnessed in Uttar Pradesh is unprecedented. Three other states have...
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