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Consumers need to pay more if workers are to be given a fair deal

This article was originally published in National Herald. President Joe Biden’s administration was able to push through a major fiscal package in March worth 1.9 trillion dollars and includes another round of 1400 dollars of stimulus cheques for individual Americans, 350 billion dollars to states and local governments as grants,...

Technology and Geopolitics: An Indian Perspective on the Past and Future

Introduction What is technology? The question appears so banal as to barely require answering. But the question bears tremendous significance for an understanding of human history and of the turbulent geopolitics of our world. In scope, it extends from the cuneiform scrawls of Bronze Age Sumerian scribes to the complex...

The current national minimum wage of Rs 176 per day must be revised upward

This article was first published in Free Press Journal President Joe Biden’s administration was able to push through a major corona-relief fiscal package this month. It is worth $1.9 trillion and includes another round of $1,400 in stimulus cheques for every American, $350 billion to states and local governments as...

Comments to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment, Forests and Climate Change on Demand for Grants (DFGs) in the Union Budget for FY 2021-22

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment, Forests and Climate Change invited comments on the Demand for Grants in Budget 2021-22. The following document presents an analysis of the overall budgetary trends across the concerned ministries and departments from the Financial Year (FY) 2015-2016 till date. It also...

Why banking the unbanked should be a national priority

By Kumar Abhishek Financial services and development are closely related. Apart from the World Bank, coalitions like Global Partnership for Financial Inclusion under G20 and International Network on Financial Education under Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) are guiding other countries on their respective financial inclusion strategies. India is...

The number game: Making sense of GDP estimates

This article was first published in Financial Express The second advance estimates of GDP for the current year, along with the third quarter estimates, released by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (Mospi) do not come as a surprise. The estimates of 1% GVA and 0.4% growth in GDP...

We should not forget the equity dimension of PSU privatization

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement that “the government has no business to remain in business” is the clearest articulation of the reason why India must privatize the hundreds of public-sector enterprises that its Union and state governments run. In doing so, he departs from earlier prime ministers, who preferred incremental...

Making State Finance Commissions work

State Finance Commissions (SFC), constitutional bodies that recommend allocating resources between state and local governments, have had a chequered history in India. In yet another attempt to revive these institutions, the Fifteenth Union Finance Commission (15th UFC) recommended that the submission of SFC reports be a precondition for local governments...

Does the budget meet India’s Defence requirements?

Until 2019, defence spending made headlines around just two events in a year. The first was when the Union budget was tabled in Parliament, and the second was when the Swedish thinktank, SIPRI, released its formidable comparative military expenditure report. That scenario changed in FY 2020-21. China’s incursions in Ladakh...

Budget’s disinvestment targets are heroic. Modi govt must show unprecedented transparency

More than macroeconomic numbers like fiscal deficits, outlays and revenue targets, we can get a good sense of the Budget by looking at the tax rates. If there are new or higher taxes, or more complicated tax rules, it is usually a bad Budget. If there are lower taxes and...
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