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

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Policy Complementarities in Achieving Universal Immunisation Coverage in India

The role of two policy pillars in achieving immunisation coverage of essential vaccines in India is examined by assessing the funds disbursed by the centre to the state governments under the Universal Immunisation Programme and the available physical health infrastructure in the states. It is found that funds by themselves are ineffective in improving vaccination coverage but are effective in conjunction with the available infrastructure. This finding has important implications for achieving full immunisation coverage, which stems from the sharing of responsibilities between the central and state governments under India’s federalised system of government.

US Elections and India

The implications of the United States presidential elections for India and the positions of the candidates in fray are often viewed through the lens of narrow interests of the ruling classes masquerading as national interest. The implications for India’s national interests cannot be delinked from the possible impacts of the results of the presidential contest for the values such as democracy, equality and peace.

Emerging Governmentality and Biopolitics of COVID-19 in India

Measures like disciplining and quarantining are associated with the governments’ extraordinary powers during unprecedented times. In this context, the biopolitics of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is discussed. When the steps taken by the government to contain the spread of coronavirus are failing, we need new imageries to tackle the challenges that lie ahead of us.

Learning from Maharashtra’s Semi-English Government-aided Schools

The semi-English schools in Maharashtra that are aided by the government have much to teach the other states in terms of ease of English learning. These schools have ensured that the regional language and that spoken at the student’s home are not neglected whilst teaching English. However, as far as Maharashtra’s ashramshalas in tribal areas are concerned, there is a need to respect and foster the tribal languages spoken by the students.

The Domicile Law of Jammu and Kashmir

The domicile law introduced in the newly created union territory of Jammu and Kashmir has aggravated the already deteriorating situation. The policy is a result of a historical, political and policy myopia of the current dispensation, which has failed to understand the significance of the earlier permanent residency laws for different communities across the erstwhile state of J&K. It has evoked fear of demographic change, loss of economic and cultural rights and has engineered profound changes in the political structure of the region.

COVID-19 Mortality Trends and Reporting

During the early phase of the coronavirus pandemic, Italy had a high infection burden and death rate while India appeared much less affected. By 22 May, Italy and India had 3,770 and 86 infections/million population with mortality rates of 14.24% and 3.03%, respectively. There was speculation about hidden advantages to India leading to a false sense of security. These differences are readily explained by the time and frequency of virus importations and the differences of the age profile of Italy and India.

Of Access and Inclusivity

Can online education enable all students to participate in and benefit from it equally? Massive online education without addressing the huge access gap and disparities in digital infrastructure would not only exclude a vast majority of students from learning opportunities but also exacerbate the existing socio-economic disparities in educational opportunities.

COVID-19 and Population Density

The article explores various methodologies of estimating the relation between population density and COVID-19 cases to suggest that deaths per million may not be a sound indicator as a guide to public policy. It also infers that population density alone may not suffice to explain the spread of the virus. Social and living conditions could play a more dominant role in explaining the spread.

Spatial Effects of COVID-19 Transmission in Mumbai

This article is on the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the city of Mumbai with the pandemic considered as a local public bad with spillover effects across the wards of the city. Spatial econometric techniques are used to model these spillovers using both cross-section as well as panel data. The main conclusion of the article is that the significant spatial spillover effect across the wards of the city is likely to make the exit from the enforced lockdown a major challenge.

Real versus Fictitious

The COVID-19 pandemic is stretching the contradictions of the present economic arrangements to the limits. The system survived inflating financial assets and feeding on inequalities. The divide between the real economy and the sphere of finance cannot be left unchecked without risking an economic catastrophe. Wealth and income inequalities cannot be pushed anymore without irretrievably damaging the underlying social contract. The virus is making change inevitable.

A Passionate Teacher and Activist

Ilina Sen, teacher, author and activist has left behind a rich legacy of work and warmth that will continue to inspire women’s and human rights activists and students

Pioneering Psephologist and Scholar Extraordinaire

Ramashray Roy (1927–2020) was an eminent political scientist who had served as director of the Indian Council of Social Science Research, New Delhi. Among his well-remembered works are the studies on the 1998, 1999, 2004 and 2009 parliamentary elections. He was also intensely interested in Mithila culture and had set up an intellectual centre in Ranti village in Madhubani district of Bihar.

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