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

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India’s Contribution to Rice Development in South and South East Asia

India supports and contributes to agricultural research and development in about 40 other countries through bilateral, multilateral, and international cooperation and agreements. In this context, India’s contribution to rice development—in terms of capacity building, rice varietal development, adoption rate of Indian-linked rice varieties, and their effects on rice production in Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Vietnam—has been explored.

Dissecting the Draft Labour Code on Social Security, 2018

While the draft Labour Code on Social Security, 2018 tries to cover over 90% unorganised workers, it still has some issues that need to be addressed.

Pakistan’s Sticky Wicket

As the subcontinent debates whether Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan can again demonstrate his well-known kaptaani élan to pull his country out of the crossfire of fundamentalism, terrorism and problems of development, one should not disregard that it is the mounting burden of fiscal mismanagement, among other factors, that has rendered various pro-poor strategies inert. Choosing the right options for fiscal management will be the most pressing policy decision facing him.

Manufacturing Output in New GDP Series

The new gross domestic product series, with base year 2011–12, has mostly replaced the Annual Survey of Industries with corporate financial data for estimating manufacturing value added. This has resulted in its higher share in GDP and a faster growth rate (compared to the older series). The Central Statistics Office claims that the new series better captures value addition, as ASI reportedly left out activities outside the factory of an enterprise. This claim is probably not true, as is evident from closer examination of a sample of ASI primary schedules.

On the Global Economic and Political Order and Its Insecurities

Samir Amin was an activist–scholar whose work stands the test of time. Hopefully, Amin lives on in the activist scholarship, and the internationalism and local commitment of new generations.

Remembering Samir Amin (1931–2018)

Samir Amin was a committed philosopher of social movements in the era of what he called “collective imperialism,” and a radical critic of contemporary bourgeois times. His imprints on radical politics, Marxist studies and the social sciences, his articulation of a new type of internationalism, or “alternative globalisation” and “global socialism” as he called it, alongside his revolutionary critique of Eurocentrism and the formulation of the waves of the humanist concept of universalism, will forever be remembered.

Kick-starting the Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan

The Union Budget 2018 announced the Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan, a scheme to replace diesel pumps and grid-connected electric tube wells for irrigation with solar irrigation pumps, including a buy-back arrangement for farmers’ surplus solar energy at a remunerative price. KUSUM can be a game changer as it can check groundwater over-exploitation, offer farmers uninterrupted daytime power supply, reduce the carbon footprint of agriculture, curtail the farm power subsidy burden, and provide a new source of risk-free income for farmers.

Goa’s Fishy Tale

Goa was in the midst of a “fish crisis” as the controversy over fish preserved in formalin being sold in the markets emerged. For a state heavily dependent on fish, the issue brings to the fore questions of food safety and the politics surrounding supply of fish in Goa.

The LIC–IDBI Deal

In the context of the recent deal between the Life Insurance Corporation of India and Industrial Development Bank of India, is this proposed investment prudent from its impact onLIC’s balance sheet and income prospects as well as from an average premium payers’ standpoint? A possible alternative in whichIDBI’s retail assets could have been sold to a commercial bank and the remaining project finance portfolio turned into a wholesale and long-term finance bank is discussed.

Institutionalising Social Audit in Meghalaya

The Meghalaya Community Participation and Public Services Social Audit Act, 2017, is the first state-level legislation explicitly aimed at institutionalising the procedure of auditing public works and programmes by the people residing in villages and urban localities through public hearings. Auditing at public hearings ( jan sunwai ) was initiated by the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan in the 1990s in Rajasthan, and the Meghalaya act has elements comparable to the Rajasthan Right to Hearing Act, 2012. Both these acts further the movement for transparency in governance, accountability of public servants to the citizens and redress of people’s grievances.

Contested Coasts

The Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change has proposed to replace the Coastal Regulation Zone Notification (2011) with an overhauled coastal regulatory framework. The process and the contents of this proposed draft indicate a top–down approach favouring limited interests. It writes out large sections of vulnerable populations facing uncertainties of livelihood, climate change, and extreme weather events. The proposed framework fails to address the weaknesses of the 2011 notification. Rather, it threatens to weaken existing safeguards and further entrench the vulnerability of coastal populations.

Special Economic Zones Face the WTO Test

Analysing the cause of the recent dispute between the United States and India, and its implications for the incentives provided to special economic zones, the need for a change in strategy regarding the existing pattern of export incentive schemes is emphasised.

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