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

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Judging the Survivor

Is a woman’s testimony about experiencing sexual violence treated credibly in a court of law? Do social, casteist, and patriarchal notions overshadow the appraisal of her version of events and the evidence?

Dealing with Pakistan Needs a Grand Strategy

For the past few decades, India has adopted a lopsided Pakistan policy with engagement as the only means to reorient Pakistan’s foreign policy. India must transition to a realpolitik approach backed by a range of power instruments, along with creatively leveraging the international environment. India should pursue cultural and commercial ties with liberal constituencies inside Pakistan, and remain open to dialogue with political forces that are reconsidering Pakistan’s role in the region.

Breaking up Tech Giants

The economic power wielded by tech giants has been aided and abetted by the lax enforcement of antitrust regulations by the United States. It has allowed them to create an almost impassable moat around their businesses, while being able to bully, browbeat, and buy out any competitors who look remotely threatening. Calls by politicians to break up these tech giants are more than timely and need to be taken seriously by regulators across the world.

Unsettling of the Dominant Refugee Discourse(s)

In the dominant refugee discourse(s) the citizen is the normal, the insider, the one who belongs, while the refugee is the abnormal, the deviant, the outsider, the one who does not belong. Thus, the latter is not only a threat to the very existence and legitimacy of the state, but also, for this reason, dispensable for it and can be dispensed off by it.

Taxation and the Rule of Law

As necessary as the power of taxation is to the functioning of a proper government, constitutionalism and the rule of law require that the government’s powers to levy and collect tax should be governed by the letter of the law. Judicial oversight is supposed to ensure that the government follows the mandate of the law in revenue collection. However, the Supreme Court’s record on this matter has been less than salutary, its problematic approach, perhaps, reflected best in Mafatlal Industries Ltd v Union of India .

Are We Heading towards a Synchronised Global Slowdown?

The global economy is heading towards a downturn. However, is the world prepared to deal with the consequences? Whether it is a slowdown or recession, it remains to be seen as to what the future would hold for the banking systems of Eurozone and China, and the global stocks in general.

Unity in Diversity

After independence, the quest for unity required actions through which trust was created and an enabling environment provided so that different points of view could be presented and discussed, in place of being pre-judged and dismissed as suspect or politically motivated. It was a deeper commitment to a diverse India that prompted this form of action; it could not have been otherwise.

The City in the Constitution

The Constitution of India considers states to be the smallest unit of governance, leaving further devolution of powers at their discretion. Even the 73rd and 74th Constitutional Amendments do not sufficiently empower the panchayati raj institutions or urban local bodies to respond to the needs of citizens in a democratic manner. With growing urbanisation, the problem of democratic deficit in the cities is going to become even more acute.

Forbearance over Default

In a move ostensibly aimed at helping micro, small and medium enterprises hurt by demonetisation and the goods and services tax regime, and burdened with distressed debt, the Reserve Bank of India acceded to the demands that a lenient regime of debt restructuring should be put in place. However, the evidence suggests that this would not go very far in helping the units in this large sector. This gives rise to the suspicion that the real intent of the move is to open the door to a return to a regime wherein bad debt, resulting from default on debt service by large corporate borrowers, is restructured at the cost of the taxpayer.

Is the Pathalgadi Movement in Tribal Areas Anti-constitutional?

The Pathalgadi movement has stemmed from the unabated alienation of land from tribal people, and is a democratic assertion for the realisation of their rights in light of the government’s failure to implement the same.

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