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

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Multiple Vulnerabilities in Utilising Maternal and Child Health Services in Uttar Pradesh, India

Although there are multiple vulnerabilities that may prevent access to maternal and child health services in India, the literature has so far focused on unidimensional vulnerabilities—typically, economic or social vulnerabilities. The linkages between multiple vulnerabilities and the utilisation of MCH services are investigated using data from National Family Health Survey-4 (2015–16) for Uttar Pradesh to analyse whether women received full antenatal care, institutional delivery care, postnatal care, and full immunisation for their children. Bivariate analysis and binomial logistic regression analysis are employed to examine the multiple vulnerabilities that service utilisation across three dimensions—education, wealth, and caste. Women with multiple vulnerabilities are less likely to utilise essential MCH services.

Progressiveness of Finance Commission

The implications of the recommendations of the Fourteenth Finance Commission on finances of Bihar as a result of changes in the tied, untied and overall union devolution are identified. The data reveals that there is an increase in tax devolution, but its share in grants, plan and non-plan, has come down drastically, hardly reflecting any increase in the total resources transferred. In reality, there has been a decrease of 1.3 percentage points in the share of tax devolution for Bihar between Thirteenth and Fourteenth Finance Commissions. Along with the revenue loss due to liquor ban, this loss has huge financial implications for Bihar’s exchequer.

The Fragmentation and Weakening of Institutions of Primary Healthcare

Originally envisioned to offer preventive, promotive, curative and rehabilitative services as per the needs of people at affordable costs, the health services in India are currently grappling with varied forms of fragmentation, at the macro-level institutions as well as at the level of primary healthcare. To arrest this crisis, it is necessary to revive referral services needed for primary-level curative care, by focusing on strengthening community health centres and developing a strong public health workforce at the grassroots level. The only way forward is to strengthen institutions of primary healthcare by effectively balancing people’s public health with their curative care needs.

Life to Indian Languages

This paper presents a linguist’s response to the main themes that run through Majeed’s (2019) comprehensive and thought-provoking two-volume study of the Linguistic Survey of India and its Editor, George A Grierson. It argues that an important source of the complexity of Grierson’s subject position and the intellectual ambiguities in the LSI originates from the fact that the LSI is an unprecedented exercise in modern linguistics. Proffering a reading of the LSI’s methodology, the paper explores the ways in which linguists may participate in an interdisciplinary recovery of this important historical exercise and its afterlife.

Technical Change in India’s Rural Organised Manufacturing Industries

Given the robust performance of India’s rural organised manufacturing industries in recent times, this study attempts to understand the nature of the technical change underlying it. Felipe and Kumar’s (2010) analytical framework is used to assess the direction of technical change in India’s rural industries in the period 1998–99 to 2016–17. The findings indicate that the direction of technical change was Hicks-neutral from 1998–99 to 2007–08 and Marx-biased from 2008–09 to 2016–17. At the disaggregated level, various industries exhibited diverse directions of technical change. The high growth seen in the economy in the first decade of this century was accompanied by a sustained rise in capital productivity. This ended subsequently, which contributed to a slowing down of the growth rate.

Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2020

The proposed Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2020 aims to reduce subsidies and push for privatisation, especially in the distribution segment of the power sector. Undertaking structural changes in a core sector at a time of crisis from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic effects defies logic. The proposed amendments are not only anti-people, but they also fail to address the long-term crises in the sector and will only accelerate its deterioration. The central government must hold off on passing any hasty legislation on the subject and adopt a more scientific and less ideological approach to deal with the travails of the power sector.

Tribal Rights and Heritage Conservation in the Western Ghats of Karnataka

In the context of Karnataka, the implementation of the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 in the heritage sites of the Western Ghats makes for an important case study of how the concerns of tribals and indigenous people are often marginalised in the debates around conservation. Analysing the process of assigning heritage status to the sites located in the state, reports of government committees on the conservation and global studies show that conservation models that vouched for exclusion of human habitants in ecologically sensitive areas failed to conserve biodiversity. Hence, the adoption of an inclusive and participatory approach is the need of the hour.

Transition Theory and India’s Groundwater Management Systems

Contemporary India is witnessing rapid urbanisation, and groundwater resources have been overexploited almost to the point of depletion. In addition to urbanisation, the changing trends in agriculture also put additional pressure on groundwater resources. While the model groundwater bill has undergone several iterations to address the issue, a critical look at the work of some non-governmental organisations and a case study of Bengaluru through the lens of transition theory help shed light on community-driven, participatory groundwater management approaches.

Dalit Feminist Voices on Reproductive Rights and Reproductive Justice

Previous research has addressed questions of reproductive justice and the stratifications of Indian women’s reproductive lives in terms of class position and economic status. However, the question of caste has received little attention in the literature and there has been a lack of research on assisted reproductive technologies and caste along with the absence of Dalit feminists speaking out on reproductive technologies. This paper attempts to begin exploring the significance of caste by drawing on in-depth interviews with Dalit feminists who challenge dominant understandings of surrogacy in both international and national debates on reproductive technologies. It highlights how an insistence on the wider socio-economic context of women’s lives challenges notions of reproductive rights, replacing them by reproductive justice.

Macroeconomic Consequences of a Lockdown and Its Policy Implications

The unprecedented lockdown has pushed economies into dire straits and also raised hopes that they would soon rebound to the old normal as soon as the pandemic is contained. But this is unlikely as the deterioration in the resource position and slump in demand can be reversed only by discarding the usual macroeconomic framework and by using a different approach and implementing out-of-the-box solutions. This analysis enables us to understand what policies may or may not work during and after a lockdown and the role of a stimulus and its magnitude.

Neo-liberal Reforms in Higher Education Accelerated by the Pandemic

Neo-liberalism’s claim of being the vanguard of individual freedom works asthe basis of popular support foreducation systemreforms, which aim at making society receptive to the principles of free market. In the process, contents and methods of teaching–learning are redesigned to build public consent for those reforms, while the real objectives are to possibly ensure a steady flow of skilled human resource for the market. The COVID-19 pandemic and resultant changes in the education system are being used to increase acceptability of the reforms.

Value Relevance, Earnings Management, and Corporate Governance in India

Research has been undertaken into the value relevance of accounting information and earnings management on stock valuation and into the moderating effects of corporate governance, but little research has been conducted into their nexus. A comprehensive examination provides empirical evidence that earnings management affects the value relevance of accounting information and that good governance can reduce the practice among Indian firms. An improvement in accounting standards may raise the confidence of potential investors in Indian firms, and policymakers and regulators may promulgate standards of codes and guidelines to improve the governance practices of Indian firms.

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