ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Need for a New Drugs Bill

After a legislative logjam (since 2011) with respect to regulating the pharmaceuticals industry, the new government at the centre has the opportunity to introduce the much-needed changes to the Drugs and Cosmetics Act. The amendment bill, introduced in Parliament on 29 August 2013, aimed to promote rational regulation of safe and effective allopathic drugs. That bill would have been yet another patch on an Act which has already been stretched beyond breaking point. It would have done little to provide a rigorous foundation for putting safety, effectiveness, rationality and need at the heart of the country's drug regulatory system. It is to be hoped that the government will make a complete overhaul of the Act one of its highest priorities.

Declining Child Sex Ratio and Sex-Selection in India

The 2011 Census results on the sex composition of the Indian population have so far been discussed within the prevailing understanding of the reasons behind a declining child sex ratio: The use of prenatal diagnostic techniques followed by sex-selective abortion, female child neglect and female infanticide. This article questions aspects of this explanation and argues for a multi-causal approach to analyse the declining child sex ratio. Attention needs to shift towards those families who, under the infl uence of the prevalent small family norm and son preference, stop producing children when one or two sons are born.

Polio in North India: What Next?

India has continued to report cases of wild poliovirus and acute flaccid paralysis throughout the 2000s. Indeed, in 2009 the numbers of both exceeded the totals for 2008, by 26% and 9.5%, respectively. Confirmed wild poliovirus cases are increasingly concentrated amongst Muslim children and localised in western Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The Pulse Polio Initiative has responded by pressurising parents into complying with the administration of multiple doses of polio vaccine to their children. But almost all new cases occur among children who have been vaccinated many times. The problems inhere in the weaknesses of government health services and in the PPI's inadequacies and errors: a focused top-down programme using the wrong vaccine and with dubious targets. It has lost its way and requires a radical shake-up.

Measuring Disability in India

Disability status is often transitory or a matter of insidious change. A person's ability to function properly depends to a considerable extent on her/his social and physical environment. One area that slips through the large-scale studies like the census and National Sample Survey is the impact of the state and the market on the lives of people with disabilities. There is a case for a more fundamental re-envisioning of the nature of the disability estimates.

Saffron Demography, Common Wisdom, Aspirations and Uneven Governmentalities

?Saffron Demography? has been instrumental in perpetuating myths relating to claimed differences between Hindu and Muslim populations. This paper examines this by now ?common wisdom? in the light of contemporary demographic reality in India. Based on extensive research in a western Uttar Pradesh district, it argues that the scale of Hindu-Muslim demographic differences has been exaggerated, and that the explanations provided for these differences are equally pernicious. Instead, it attempts an understanding of these ?causes? leading to differences in fertility through an analysis of the kind of governmentality seen in post-independence India and argues for new policy initiatives that avoid the punitive victim-blaming approach that has thus far been the norm.

Religion and Fertility in India

The recent contribution by Moulasha and Rama Rao (1999) to the debate on the relationships between religion, fertility and family planning, uses National Family Health Survey data in misleading ways. By failing to consider regional patterns in the distribution of Hindus and Muslims they exaggerate the role of religious group membership in understanding fertility differences. They give spurious credence to arguments that suggest that Islam in some way encourages higher fertility, they fail to consider issues of risk and uncertainty faced by religious minorities, and they come to unwarranted policy conclusions. In order to understand inter-religious fertility differences, analyses must be based on the understanding of specific social, economic and political contexts.

The Bijnor Riots, October 1990-Collapse of a Mythical Special Relationship

The Bijnor Riots, October 1990 Collapse of a Mythical Special Relationship? Roger Jeffery Patricia M Jeffery Can the Bijnor riots just be blamed on the machinations of the Sangh parivar or are there more deep-rooted issues at work? Can the violence be attributed to economic interests posing as religious ones? Different aspects of these arguments are examined and found wanting. The longer-term consequences of the violence for the future of communal relations in Bijnor are not hopeful as Bijnor experiences a 'criminalisation of politics' with its ethnic competition and collective violence as an integral component Despite the fact of close interrelationships on a daily basis, people are increasingly seeing themselves and others in 'communal' terms. Muslims will continue to suffer most from this 'crisis of government'

Social Sciences in Health-An Alternative Paradigm

Social Sciences and Health Service Development in India: Sociology of Formation of an Alternative Paradigm by D Banerji; Lok Paksh, New Delhi, DEBABAR BANERJI (hereafter DB) is the most prominent.social scientist in India concerned full-time with issues of health and illness, health services development and health policy. His international reputation is considerable. He regularly takes part in WHO consultations and other forums where he provides a non-official Indian perspective. He has published in a wide variety of foreign and Indian journals. Some of his early writings

A Savage Enquiry

December 27, 1986 A Savage Enquiry Roger Jeffery IN April 1985, Wendy Savage's contract as a Consultant Obstetrician Senior Lecturer at the London Hospital Medical School was suspended. 'Suspension', as a means of discipline, is rarely used in the NHS. The procedure partly prejudges the issues in question, since the accused is punished before she has a chance to 'defend herself, and so it is usually involved only when serious malpractice is invoked. But in this case, the accusation was of alleged incompetence; and the specific complaint rested on five cases selected from Wendy Savage's case-load of 800 women delivered by her under her supervision during fourteen months in 1983-84. Other people saw Savage's competence in a different light: this became clear in June 1985, when she received the award of Fellowship of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, granted (as always) for "advancing the science and practice of obstetrics and gynaecology".

Female Infanticide and Amniocentesis

the Cultural Revolution, return to the centres of the political scene in China? The mere fact that this question can be posed shows that the process of economic reforms in China is very different from the economic reform process in East- em Europe.

New Patterns in Health Sector Aid

Criticisms of health aid have largely been derived from African and Latin American experiences. Such criticisms, while useful, cannot be applied wholesale to India without more detailed examination of the patterns of health sector aid which have actually characterised the period since 1947.

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