Policy Issues

Women Workers and the Union Government’s Economic Vision, 2020

THE Union Budget 2017-18 was preceded by the Economic Survey, 2017-18 which comprehensively outlines the long term economic strategy of the government. Though the survey is rigorously researched and referenced by the chief economist, it displays a strong ideological commitment and focus to pushing India into the next phase of neo-liberal reforms, both in terms of policy and societal changes.

Privatisation of Public Services Hurts Poor, Creates Inequality

EFFORTS to privatise public goods and services have helped fuel an increasingly unequal society, says a new report by a US-based research and policy centre.

The report, “How privatisation increases inequality,” examines the ways in which the insertion of private interests into the provision of public goods and services hurts poor individuals and families, and people of colour in the United States, a model that is fast spreading across the world, including in developing countries, such as India.

Demonetisation and State Repression in Bastar

RECENT cases of action against adivasi rights activists, lawyers and intellectuals have shown that demonetisation has become one more tool of State repression. At the start of the demonetisation drive, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, claimed that this measure would strike at the root of the funding to ‘terrorist groups and maoist insurgents”. This claim was further buttressed by unverified police media leak that the ‘maoists’ had stashed rupees seven thousand crores in the jungles and were now forcing villagers and sympathisers to exchange their old notes for new ones.

Demonetisation and State Repression in Bastar

RECENT cases of action against adivasi rights activists, lawyers and intellectuals have shown that demonetisation has become one more tool of State repression. At the start of the demonetisation drive, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, claimed that this measure would strike at the root of the funding to ‘terrorist groups and maoist insurgents”. This claim was further buttressed by unverified police media leak that the ‘maoists’ had stashed rupees seven thousand crores in the jungles and were now forcing villagers and sympathisers to exchange their old notes for new ones.

Digital Economy: Who Benefits?

FIFTY days, that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi had asked of the people, were completed but with no signs of abatement of hardships. These fifty days have brought to light umpteen stories of hardships that the people had to suffer in order to access their hard earned money. These fifty days also witnessed the goalposts of demonetisation shifting continuously. First it started as a measure to combat black money and terrorism. Later it was championed as a necessary step for transition towards a 'cashless society', which yet again was subtly modified to a 'less cash society'.

Fifty Days of Demonetisation And the Unorganised Sector

PRIME Minister Modi’s fifty days of ‘pain’ are getting over on December 30, 2016. But the reports and studies on the impact of demonetisation show that the ‘short term pain’ will lead to no ‘long term gain’. Rather its impact on employment and production may hit the majority of the workforce in the country. This is particularly true of people in informal employment or labour relations, both in the organised and unorganised sectors.

The Deadlock in GST

WITH the passage of the constitutional amendment, it was taken for granted that there would be no further hurdles to the smooth introduction of Goods and Service Tax (GST) from the beginning of the next financial year.  The Central GST (CGST) and Integrated GST (IGST) bills were to be introduced as money bills and passed in Lok Sabha during the winter session of the parliament.  Thereafter the states are to pass the State GST (SGST) bills in their respective legislatures during their budget sessions.  And that would have cleared the deck for GST in the country from April 1.  However, the pa

Women Home-based Workers and Demonetisation

IN recent times, the prime minister of India has repeatedly termed the critics of demonetisation as backers of black money who work against the nation. The argument implies that all those who have cash income, even though legally acquired, are offenders who would have escaped had the government given more time to them to ‘prepare’. This aggressive campaign of the government has one fundamental flaw: it assumes that the only losers from the demonetization are the money hoarders not the mass of the labouring poor whose entire survival depends on wages paid in cash.

Central Offensive against Credit Cooperatives

THE frenzy unleashed by the demonetisation of 1000 and 500 rupee currency notes has entered the third week. The Indian economy is still decelerating and in a sense imploding. The first assessment of the likely impact of the currency debacle on GDP growth has come from AMBIT, who has revised the GDP growth rate for 2016-17 from 6.8 to 3.5 percent. They estimate the growth in the current quarter to be in the negative. I find it difficult to reconcile with such a precipitous fall but, the Indian growth story has been tripped.

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