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

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Planting of Illegal Crops

The need for technology in agriculture is often confused with giving farmers access to genetically modified crops. Rarely is the performance of the country’s first GM crop, Bt cotton, examined under a critical lens. Instead, the backdoor entry of illegal GM seeds is gaining momentum in the name of progress and of giving farmers a choice. The absence of a strict regulation regime is sorely felt. Research on agriculture and sustainability is the need of the hour.

NITI Aayog’s Health Index

Based on a critical review of the NITI Aayog’s recently published “Healthy States, Progressive India,” it is argued that the report provides only a superficial insight into the overall health attainment. Much deeper and careful analysis is required if one aims to unfold the complexity and varied contexts provided by Indian states, let alone ranking them on health attainment. The method of calculating the index in the report compromises scientific rigour, and the inferences drawn are highly misleading.

Nuances of the Left Debacle in Tripura

The electoral and political debacle of the left in Tripura is a culmination of long-term social churning. Discontent among the tribal population as well as the divide between tribal and Bengali communities were effectively utilised by the Bharatiya Janata Party, which has led to precipitous erosion of the base of the Communist Party of India (Marxist).

Lessons from Kolkata’s East–West Metro Disaster

The disasters faced during the construction of the east–west metro corridor in Kolkata have brought to the fore various contentious issues of urban infrastructure development, such as limited know-how of executing agency, low or no disaster preparedness, and precedence of narrow political interests over the safety considerations of such high-risk construction projects. These accidents reiterate the need for redefining the roles and responsibilities of the stakeholders involved in such projects.

India’s Slowdown

Investments in industry have slowed down considerably in the recent years, as has agricultural growth. Falling levels of capacity utilisation, building up of food stocks and the state of liquidity in the economy sufficiently prove that the problem today is the lack of demand. Rural distress, rising inequality and falling real wages are driving down demand. The government’s response to the slowdown has been woefully inadequate. The biggest impediment to policymaking is not the lack of ideas, but the blinkered vision of economics.

Virtuous Cycle and Economic Growth in India

A critique is offered after examining the claims in the Economic Survey that the concept of virtuous cycle is of recent origin and that during the planning period, the planners were unaware of such a way of imagining economic progress. The evidences provided to support the presence of the virtuous cycle in China and the East Asian countries are also questioned.

Reflections on the Disciplinary Credibility of Business History

Can a change of nomenclature generate a new approach that may help reconceptualise the story, the history of Indian business? Business studies must take the archive much more seriously than it does, not as an inert repository of facts, and engage with the historical method with much greater rigour. Unless the practice and protocols of history writing are considered seriously and their location understood, it would be impossible for business history to have the productive conversation that it seeks.

How Much of RBI’s Profit Transfer Is Enough

The Jalan Committee’s recommendations for the Reserve Bank of India to pay dividend to the government out of its current year’s surplus only after meeting the contingency risk buffer is a smart move towards the proverbial act of fine-balancing.This should put all speculations to rest about further transfers out of the central bank’s past reserves.

Towards ‘Schoolification’ of Early Childhood Years

The recommendations of the draft National Education Policy 2019 regarding early childhood care and education reduce it to school preparedness, effectively risking all the achievements made so far in this sector. If implemented as such, the comprehensive approach of the National ECCE Policy 2013, where care, nutrition, health, and early learning are seen as inseparable elements assuring the holistic development of a child will give way to a split-system where early education is prioritised at the cost of all other components, raising fears of “schoolification” of early childhood years.

Maoist Justice vs Liberal Justice

Can violence become a means to justice? Should an oppressed community give any consideration to the principle of liberty? Using K Balagopal’s position on human rights as the backdrop, a theoretical approach to human rights is presented. The Maoist movement’s communitarian approach to rights, where every fight for justice is reduced to “us versus them,” comes at a high cost to overall justice in society. Instead, the only reasonable approach is one that recognises multiple credible claims to justice from myriad interests of individuals and groups across society.

The End of Super Imperialism?

With intensifying concerns regarding the soundness and stability of the international monetary and financial system, calls for reforming it have been on the rise. One recent call was made by the Bank of England Governor Mark Harvey, in August 2019, in which he suggested a synthetic hegemonic currency to replace the US dollar as the key reserve currency. Whether such calls will lead to an end of the key reserve currency status of the dollar remains to be seen.

Policies Need a Cautious Nudge

Recent developments suggest that policymakers in India are gearing up for the application of nudge theory in policymaking. However, there is a need for a scrutiny of the normative foundations and the social ethics underlying the nudge agenda for policymaking. Policymakers need to take these into cognisance while thinking about its application.

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