Current Issues

Shadow cast by the rupee
07 June, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The rupee has sharply depreciated in the recent weeks giving reason for concern. The external events of rise in oil prices and rate of interest in advanced economies has led to a surge in the current account deficit and capital outflows respectively. The success of 'the liberalization reforms' lies in the huge capital inflows and thus, has enhanced the periodic bouts of the rupee, hinting to symptoms of a bubble economy.
The Modi Government's "Achievement"
03 June, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Concluding the four years of Modi government is an unparalleled process of social and political retrogression in the country. A look at the declining per capita real income in agriculture and privatization of education and other essential services points at an expedition of neo-liberal tendencies during the Modi regime.
Walmart's Gamble and what it means for India
29 May, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
By taking the majority stake in Flipkart, Walmart has committed itself to bearing losses in the medium term in a desperate gamble to thwart Amazon’s rise in India. The casualty will be the small retail business sector, which supports a large volume of self-employed and low-paid workers.
The Gathering Storm Clouds
28 May, 2018, Praveen Jha & Amit Chakraborty
The Indian Economy has all along been critically dependent upon the inflow of speculative finance to sustain its balance of payment. It now faces threatening prospects of a spiral as international crude oil prices and U.S. interest rates, that kept its import bill restricted, are on the rise.
The So-called "Consumers' Interest"
21 May, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The argument in the wake of the Walmart-Flipkart deal, that having large multinationals in the sphere serves consumers’ interest not only ignores the plight of local producers but is also analytically unsound. “Consumers” are not an entity distinct from the displaced producers and will get affected adversely over time.
The return of the oil threat
11 May, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
As oil-producing countries, especially Saudi Arabia and Russia, stick to their reduced outputs and as Trump threatens to isolate Iran with sanctions once again, the spectre of high oil prices and the accompanying inflation seem very real.
Leapfrogging into Services
26 April, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The argument that services reflect a new dynamism in India and the IMF’s prescription that the sector can be a driver of growth and development are far-fetched.
Trump's Trade War
24 April, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The trade sanctions on China and other protectionist measures announced by the Trump administration will not only not serve the cause of the U.S.’ trade deficit but could also spark off a trade war, resulting in an overall shrinkage of world trade.
A Tale of Two Discourses
19 April, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The Hindutva bubble has clearly burst. Mass demonstrations by peasants, traders, doctors, teachers, students and even school children in the past few days have shown that not only the fear gripping the people is over but also the Indian political discourse is shifting towards material-practical matters, again acquiring a resemblance to what it had been in the pre-Modi years.
The Prospect of Food Shortage
09 April, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Contrary to the fears of orthodox economics, persistent and even growing hunger in the world today arises not due to “excessive population” but due to the social arrangement; not because there is too little output relative to population but because there is too little demand relative to output.
The Real Confusion over MSP
04 April, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The government ought to have specified its definition of cost of crop production in the Budget to prevent any confusion in the minds of people on minimum support prices.
Doyen of 'Dependency Theory'
03 April, 2018, Sunanda Sen
Theotonio dos Santos (1936–2018), who passed away on 27th February in Rio de Janeiro, was a major proponent of dependecia or dependency theory, important for those interpreting the growing disparities between the advanced and the developing world. Time will bear testimony to his contributions, as a scholar, a theoretician, and an activist who spent his life in spelling out the injustices in globalization.
Commoditization and the Public Sphere
02 April, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The distinction between the sphere of market and the sphere of public discourse remains central to liberalism. But under capitalism, the public sphere becomes untenable due its “spontaneous” destruction by the markets’ immanent tendency towards commoditization, as we are witnessing everywhere today. In such a world, a fight towards democracy is itself a means of advancing the struggle for socialism.
Trump's Protectionism
26 March, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Trumps' announcement of tariff hike tantamount to a beggar-thy-neighbor policy that would inevitably attract retaliation. But these current protectionist measures on capital-in-production do not in any way restrict capital-as-finance. They are just desperate and counter-productive attempts at coping with a crisis, which is itself an outcome of the process of globalization of finance.
Technological Change and Impoverishment
19 March, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Socio-economic effects of technological change depend upon the property relations within the system they occur. While in socialism higher labour productivity can improve the conditions of workers, in capitalism, the same has lead to growing relative labour reserves, and hence impoverishment.
State or Market?: India's telecom wars
17 March, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The entry of Reliance Jio in the telecom industry has unleashed an aggressive price war, resulting in takeovers, mergers and closures owing to large debts, spectrum charge dues and falling revenues.
The Importance of Dissatisfaction
17 March, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The first step to overthrowing an oppressive system is “epistemic exteriority” or visualizing an alternative system outside of the existing one. But neo-liberal capitalism has been remarkably successful in thwarting such visualization, by proposing “epistemic closure” as an essential component of development.
The UGC Directive on Autonomous Colleges
12 March, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Higher education in India is facing a twin danger of commoditization and communalization under the globalized capital today. This tendency is fueled further by the UGC directive that combines commoditization with a push towards centralization that is rampant under the Modi government.
The Tripura Election Verdict
07 March, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The Tripura reverse brings out the fact that it is exceedingly difficult for an opposition party, that has an incumbent government in any state to withstand the onslaught of the BJP, and in between states the one anti-BJP opposition force is different and scattered. For the Left it means a fight for survival.
Agrarian distress in India
01 March, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
To stabilize crop prices and make them remunerative, the Swaminathan Commission proposed significant improvements in the implementation of MSPs.
When business turns 'Easy'
28 February, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The Modi/Choksi case illustrates how a neoliberal financial policy regime that is aggressively “reformist” creates conditions that make the system vulnerable to fraud and corruption on a huge scale.
The Destruction of a University
28 February, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
The Jawaharlal Nehru University administration has, in the past two years, undermined the norms and conventions that have established it as a premier institution of higher learning in India.
The Nirav Modi Scandal
23 February, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Nirav Modi’s is not a case of crony capitalism supplanting genuine capitalism; it is rather a case of genuine capitalism coming out to display its fundamental unworkability, as a system based on the pursuit of private gain. Having institutional restraints can stem the rot, but not for long.
Bubbles, Stocks and Crashes
21 February, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
What the current U.S. experience shows is not only the role of bubbles in sustaining the level of activity under a neo-liberal regime, and hence the fact that the lives of millions depend upon the whims of a bunch of speculators, but also the completely evanescent and short-lived character of the booms in this period.
A Dangerous Period
16 February, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Contemporary Fascism around the world is emerging as neo-liberal capitalism’s “gift” to mankind in the period of its maturity, when it submerges the world economy in a crisis, and reaches a dead-end from which there is no obvious escape.
The Economic Survey 2017-18
04 February, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Like the person on the proverbial tiger, the Indian economy is currently riding a precarious course. The Government of India’s Economic Survey for 2017-18 recognizes this frankly, but its panacea is to keep one’s fingers crossed and hope that the ride continues.
Rising Incomes, Falling Wages
31 January, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
Changing the unequal economic tendencies brought out in the World Inequality Report 2018 requires changing the politics—not just making governments more accountable to the people, but making people realise that they are being fooled.
Window Dressing Budgetary Figures
31 January, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Budget 2018-19 will feature a window dressed Revised Estimate to ensure that the fiscal deficit is on target. The government’s decision to sell its stake in HPCL to ONGC is only one more step in that direction.
The Dramatic Rise in Wealth Inequality
25 January, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Notwithstanding the statistical difficulties associated with the estimates of wealth distribution, there is no gainsaying the fact that something extremely serious for our democracy and freedom is occurring through the extraordinary rise in wealth inequality, as a result of the pursuit of unrestrained neo-liberal economic policies by the present government.
Public Banks: Dressing up for the market
22 January, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The government’s ambitious plan to recapitalise public sector banks that have recorded losses with resources from the Budget is an attempt to dress them up before taking them to the market.
The Politics of being a Dalit Woman
22 January, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
To deal with the political and economic marginalisation of Dalit women, it is necessary to recognise the significant differences among them not only according to socio-economic context, degree of education and occupation but also by subcaste.
Arun Jaitley on Electoral Bonds
15 January, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Arun Jaitley had outlined a scheme of electoral bonds in his budget speech on February 2, 2017. Now, exactly 11 months later, the notification of the scheme and some details of it have finally been announced in a Press Information Bureau release on January 2, 2018……..
The Airtel-Aadhaar Fix
10 January, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Airtel is let off lightly by the government despite being in clear violation of the law in a case that exposes the flaws and dangers in the ecosystem surrounding Aadhaar.
Destroying our Wetlands
10 January, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
The specific rules for wetlands framed in 2010 have remained only on paper and do not seem to be able to stop proscribed activities in such areas, with even a five-star hotel being constructed on one in Udaipur.
A Year of Wilful Economic Disaster
08 January, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
The uniqueness of 2017 lies in the fact that never before has the country seen a government-caused economic crisis as serious as was witnessed in this year.
The Indian economy in 2017
02 January, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
This was the year that the economy tanked. Not necessarily in terms of official growth figures: according to the CSO, GDP growth decelerated, but not by that much....
The Problem with the Indian Left
27 December, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The current problem with the Indian Left, and in this term I include all sections of the Left, from the so-called "parliamentary Left" to the so-called "revolutionary Left", is in my view, its lack of appreciation of the dialectics between "reform" and "revolution".
Making Merry on Bitcoin
22 December, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Bitcoin has left the world of finance gasping. Though the total market value of all of that cryptocurrency in circulation is only a fraction of the value of the world's financial assets, the rapid rise in the value of the currency has made it the most wanted of those assets.
The Obscenity of Hunger Deaths
22 December, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
There is no doubt that human life is cheap in India, perhaps more so now than ever before. The attacks, atrocities and killings of people from minorities and marginalised groups that have now become so common are particularly appalling because they reflect a culture of impunity.
A Dangerous Bill on Banks
22 December, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The BJP government, it appears, cannot remain content without inflicting irreparable damage on the institutions of the Indian economy. Its latest move in this direction is the Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance (FRDI) Bill which was introduced in parliament on the last day of the winter session and is now with a Select Committee.
Marx and Naoroji
20 December, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
In the early 1850s Karl Marx, living in Dean Street in Londons Soho, was working on his opus Capital, of which a preliminary fragment was published in 1859 as A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy........
Economic Recovery or A Statistical Illusion: Some observations on recent estimates of GDP growth
07 December, 2017, Vikas Rawal
On November 30th, the Central Statistical Office (CSO) came out with quarterly estimates of GDP for the second quarter (June to Sep) of 2017. Predictably, analysts and spokespersons of the government spent the evening in newsrooms of various TV channels celebrating what they claimed was a sign of revival of the economy.
The Gujarat model’s failure explains why the economy has become such a significant factor in the coming state elections
28 November, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The model of development that was presented as a success story relies on patronising and providing incentives to large businesses while simultaneously suppressing wage incomes.
Banks And Non-Performing Assets
28 November, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
What exactly constitutes a non-performing asset (NPA) of a bank is not easy to determine. Since banks tend to roll over credit to borrowers, whether the request for such a roll over arises in the normal course of business or owing to a fundamental inability to pay back the loan, is difficult to decide.
Shopping frenzy in the new China
24 November, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba creates a startling sales record on this year’s Singles’ Day, tapping into the rising consumerism of the upper middle class. The surge may not yield the home market growth needed to rebalance the country’s growth.
How China is managing capital flows - and why
24 November, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
China is seeking a more influential role in the global economy, and it hopes to achieve this through greater use of its currency by others.
Moody's Upgrade
20 November, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The slight upgrade of India’s credit worthiness by Moody, that equates finance with nation, is being celebrated by the media as a mark of Modi’s success, but the criteria it has used to judge are in actuality open assaults by the government on the working population. To transcend such neo-liberal capitalism, the wrongness of this criteria must be understood first.
Neo-liberalism has been a disaster for Nepal
20 November, 2017,
Why is neoliberalism bad for India and Nepal? What are its major flaws? Mahabir Paudyal and Prashant Lamichhane from myRepublica caught up with Professor C.P. Chandrasekhar when he was in Kathmandu last week to discuss the impact of neo-liberal economic order in the two countries, and the prospects of a socialist-oriented economy in Nepal.
Engineering a new crisis to resolve an old one
16 November, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Central banks are deciding to scale back their policy of “quantitative easing” in the form of liquidity infusion through asset purchases, but they are unwilling to commit to a quick unwinding of balance sheets fearing market reaction to a radical change in the easy money environment.
Not with a Bang but with a (prolonged) Whimper
16 November, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The German thinker Wolfgang Streeck in his brilliant book provides a cogent critique of the nature of contemporary capitalism, and describes its ongoing extended demise without surrendering to any optimism that as it fails to deliver even in terms of its own logic all the injustice it has generated must inevitably change for the better.
The Slide of an Aging Leader
26 October, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The recent acquisition of TTSL by Airtel indicates the deep-seated problems of mismanagement and debt-ridden books of the Tata group, which was once a frontrunner among business conglomerates but is now, only a shadow of its former glorious self.
The Golden "Diwali Gift"
26 October, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
In the light of rescinding, at the behest of the clout of jewellery traders, the notification requiring KYC details for purchase of gold, the government will find it difficult to maintain its ‘pro-poor’ and ‘anti-corruption’ image as its moves seem to be, more for optics and hype than substantive change.
Neo-Liberal Capitalism and its Crisis
24 October, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Neo-liberal capitalism is marked by the hegemony of international finance capital which has many consequences, among which is the alarming upsurge of fascism, differing markedly from the fascism of the 1930s.
The Current Upsurge of Fascism
18 October, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
To describe the present upsurge of fascism as nationalist or populist would be misleading. Neither is it a replication of the fascism of the 1930s. However, it is marked by four features, which have been common to all fascist upsurges in the past, namely: rise of supremacism, apotheosis of unreason, proliferation of fascism as a movement, and intertwining of fascist movement and corporate capital.
The de-digitisation of India
12 October, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The failure of digitisation is the result of the Central government’s cart-before-horse attitude to policy, which does not take into account the wider context and the supportive and enabling conditions that must be met for any policy measure to succeed.
Create a Crisis and make it Worse
12 October, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The government’s proposal to set up an all-powerful entity to solve the NPA problem has serious implications for banks and could leave them vulnerable to, among other things, runs by depositors.
Strangulating the Informal Economy
12 October, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The current slowdown in the economy, aggravated by the persistent world economic crisis, has much to do with the twin coercive instruments of demonetisation and GST wielded by the state to strangulate the informal economy in a bid to formalise it.
The Class Content of the Goods and Services Tax
05 October, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
In the discussions about GST, the class content of this new tax regime has been missed. Through an overall increase in the taxation of the informal sector i.e. of the petty producers and the small capitalists, it has unleashed the twin process of centralization of political authority and the centralization of capital, which in turn strengthen one another.
The Growing Income Inequality
05 October, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The conclusion drawn by Piketty and Chancel in their recent paper shows a greater income inequality in India than it has ever been in the past century. But what stands out is that the trend perfectly synchronizes with transition to neo-liberalism, a stage of capitalism wherein international finance has gained hegemony, and no longer remains a policy choice.
Winner-take-all Political Funding
28 September, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
By introducing the opaque and hugely problematic system of electoral bonds, the BJP-led government at the Centre has indicated that it is not really interested in fighting corruption but only concerned with expanding its hold on power.
Mixed signals from the external sector
28 September, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Large capital inflows have boosted foreign exchange reserves and resulted in the rupee strengthening. Although exports have not done badly, the widening trade deficit owing to a rise in the import bill can worsen the current account position and create a vicious circle.
A Bull in a China Shop
26 September, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The BJP government, through demonetization and GST, coupled with the world economic situation, it is causing a rare co-occurrence of three phenomena: a stagnation of the countrys’ economy, a revival of inflation, and a yawning current account deficit on the balance of payments. As the era of cheap money in the U.S. and elsewhere come to an end, Indian assets might pass into foreign hands.
Agrarian Conditions and Recent Peasant Struggles in Sikar
25 September, 2017, Vikas Rawal
Kisans of Sikar have fought many valiant struggles against oppression and against anti-people state policies. This year’s struggle in Sikar has once again shown that it is only through such mobilisations of working people that anti-people actions of the current government can be checked.
The Epidemico of Vigilantism
20 September, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
In a situation where the secular political leadership has lost a good deal of its credibility and grassroots vigilantism is becoming a widespread, veritable epidemic under growing fascism, the judiciary continues to remain a credible instrument for the reassertion of the values that the Constitution associated with a modern India.
Deras and Evangelicals
18 September, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
Deras, like the Pentecostal Church in the U.S. and elsewhere, are popular because they address the needs and aspirations of those socially excluded by organised religion and economically marginalised by globalisation.
Downturn Blues
18 September, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The most recent deceleration in growth is the result of the inability of the system to sustain the artificial stimuli that the neoliberal policy environment facilitated. It is a problem that does not lend itself to easy resolution.
Peasant Struggles in Shekhawati in the Early Twentieth Century
13 September, 2017, Vikas Rawal
The article is highly relevant to the ongoing peasant struggle in Rajasthan (Sikar) today. It examines the historical evidence that shows that the emergence of economically and politically dominant landlords from among Jat, and to a smaller extent Brahmin, castes in Shekhawati is a relatively recent phenomenon. Peasant struggles in Shekhawati in the first half of the twentieth century brought an end to the shackles of the Jagirdari system, which fundamentally changed the structure of control over land with tenants-at-will getting ownership rights over land.
Sanitation workers in India
08 September, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The deeply entrenched casteist approach to manual scavenging is part of public policy and explains why the practice continues unabated and why the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan in effect relies on it.
America's Turn Towards Fascism and Its Contradictions
04 September, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
While the turn of the U.S. towards fascism is unmistakable, the contradictions associated with this turn, and the complexity of the process of formation of the partnership between big business and fascist upstarts within the framework of a non-fascist bourgeois State to start with, are also clearly visible.
The Truth About Demonetization
01 September, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The recent RBI report that shows that 99% of the demonetized currency notes have been returned proves false the governments claim that the scheme, that shook the whole economy, would cripple the black economy, an argument whose success lay in the demonetized currency not coming back to the system. Moreover, with re-monetization complete, there has been no flushing out of black money whatsoever.
The Economy: 70 years after Independence
30 August, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Indias' reliance on fortuitous and volatile stimuli to drive growth has resulted in inadequate job creation and widened inequalities while failing to address social deprivation.
Capitalism's Discourse on "Development"
30 August, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Capitalism cannot overcome unemployment and poverty in the third world countries because of its inherent tendency to generate greater technological progress, which increases labor productivity and thereby slows down the employment generation process. Because of growing labor reserves, real wages remain at subsistence level, but since labor productivity would be growing, the share of surplus would be increasing. Therefore capitalism produces growth at one pole and aggravates poverty at another.
150 years of 'Das Kapital': How relevant is Marx today?
24 August, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
After 150 years of Das Kapital, the seminal work of the 19th century economist still provides a framework for understanding contemporary capitalism. The unique social relations such as free labour and commodity fetishism, that according to Marx, define capital, are reflected in the uneven and unstable development of the world market.
A Dangerous Analogy
24 August, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Democracy in India faces a severe threat from the penchant for centralization and uniformity that the Hindutva forces have and which Modi articulated in the Central Hall on July 1 through his misleading analogy between the GST and the integration of princely states by Vallabhbhai Patel during Independence. Such comparison puts a tax reform and democratic revolution on the same platform, confusing biased centralization with unity of the country.
Economy Plunging Headlong into Recession
16 August, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The few days old Volume II of the Economic Survey by Ministry of Finance shows a GVA growth rate much less than that of the previous year, and that too artificially boosted by seasonal variations in non-core sectors. This deceleration is most likely to continue, with growing NPAs and plunging exports, and interest rate cuts will not help in a demand-constrained economy unless the government starts thinking beyond fiscal rectitude.
Financing Education
08 August, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The central governments Draft National Education Policy promotes privatization of education to meet its target, which is not only logically absurd but also legitimizes inequality. Solutions like student loans are impractical with educated unemployment, and fee subsidies turn counterproductive. The one efficient way is to extract the private funds through progressive direct tax, but that seems impossible in this neo-liberal era.
Twenty Years After The Asian Financial Crisis
07 August, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
It was the free flow of foreign capital through financial liberalization that led to the East Asian Crisis of 1997, from which the tiger economies have not yet recovered fully. Even now, the augmented foreign reserves of these third world countries remain woefully inadequate to finance debt to foreigners, as the hegemony of international finance capital builds over their own assets.
NPAs: All talk and no action
04 August, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The problem of large NPAs of nationalised banks can be traced to the neoliberal reforms in the financial sector and outside, which prevent large government investments in infrastructure and capital-intensive industries that are imperative for development but too difficult a responsibility for the private sector to shoulder.
Progressive mobilization in Europe
20 July, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The G20 summit in Hamburg was an occasion for public affirmations of the continued power of progressive ideas and calls for action around issues that really matter, in the form of an alternative summit, performance art demonstrations, and marches.
The Hamburg Fiasco
19 July, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
There is no sign of any consensus coming out of the G20 on the need for a mix of globally coordinated policies and a fiscal push to pull the world economy out of recession. What we have once again is a set of statements that says everything and therefore nothing.
Three Deaths
19 July, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Prabhat Patnaik mourns the deaths of three of his close friends, all brilliant people: Arup Mullick, Basudev Chatterji, and Nirupam Sen, whose outstanding character and intellectual genius will be greatly missed.
Justice in the Age of Finance
07 July, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The very limited Barclays prosecution comes in the wake of a half-hearted investigation effort, which has thus far completely let off all those who took the world economy to the verge of a crisis akin to the Great Depression. It is not clear if anything will finally come out of even this case, which is aimed at merely teaching a lesson to those who hurt a bunch of financial investors by violating insider rules.
The Macroeconomics of Basic Income Grants
07 July, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
The idea of Universal Basic Income, today treated as novel, in fact dates back to Kautilyas Arthashastra and Thomas Mores Utopia in the 16th century. Milton Friedman's negative income tax also revolved around the same idea, which was rightfully criticized by Minsky for inducing inflationary expansion in place of direct welfare schemes. Considering distributional effects, direct job creation is a more effective way to tackle poverty.
The Rights of the Child and the G20 Summit
03 July, 2017, Sir Richard Jolly & Gabriele Kohler
Fresh research from UNICEF shows that the number of children in poverty, in rich countries has increased as a result of austerity policies. An average of one in five children in 41 high income countries lives in poverty. Children and their rights do not even seem to feature in the G20 manifesto, even as it stresses the ending of austerity policies and encouraging public budgets that promote development and poverty eradication.
The Roots of the Agrarian Distress In India
29 June, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The policy shifts of the reform era have not been in favor of agriculture. Trade liberalisation, deregulation and a greater role for market forces have not benefited the farmer, who is trapped in a persisting crisis. It is time for today's policy makers to recognise their own disconnect, and learn from the evidence at hand.
Computer outages
22 June, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
While our dependency and vulnerability towards computers is becoming almost universal, the false resilience and reliability of the cyberspace is being exposed through recent system breakdowns caused due to extremely minor human errors and absence of adequate backup. In these days of cost cutting, CEOs and governments see cyber maintenance as a luxury, which itself has become a reason for its fragility.
Development for Whom?
22 June, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
Calls for a new development paradigm grow louder each day, especially in rapidly growing countries like India. Award-winning development economist Jayati Ghosh explores prospects for such a new model of equitable and sustainable development with Allen White, Senior Fellow at the Tellus Institute.
Imperialism Still Alive and Kicking: An Interview With Prabhat Patnaik
20 June, 2017,
Imperialism is the arrangement that the capitalist system sets up for imposing income deflation on the working population of the third world for countering the threat of inflation that would otherwise erode the value of money in the metropolis and make the system unviable. A delinking from globalization by an alternative State, based on a worker-peasant alliance, is required for improved living conditions of the third world working population.
The Economy under Modi
20 June, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
As per official data, half of the countrys population witnessed no improvement in real per capita income over the three Modi years. Other indicators like the demand from net exports, Central Government expenditure (as a proportion of nominal GDP) and number of new jobs created in the organized sector, all reflect a gloomy picture of the Indian economy. The government has been keen on keeping finance capital happy while compromising on these matters.
Growing class resistance against "Globalization"
19 June, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Universal non-class use of the term globalisation and its other nationalism by the bourgeoisie has enabled them to show the former as progressive and latter reactionary for all classes. But recent election results in major countries reflect the rise of resistance of the worker class against the hegemony of globalised finance capital everywhere. Even in India, for the first time in three decades, anti-labour policies are being challenged by strong peasant movements in many states.
One Belt, One Road, One grand design?
10 June, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
As Trump adopts protectionist measures, President Xi Jingpings project One Belt One Road is an overwhelmingly ambitious plan to restore faith in globalization. Aiming to perfectly connect 60 countries to China, it is expected to face huge political and financial difficulties. Although it points to a new kind of Chinese imperialism, such a world of competitive superpowers might open new opportunities for the developing nations.
The GDP elephant
06 June, 2017, Jayati Ghosh
National income is hard to estimate in India where so much activity and employment is in the informal sector. Much of GDP calculation is not purely technocratic but relies on judgments and assumptions. As long as our system of national accounting does not clarify the real impact on the economy and the actual degree of deceleration of economic activity, we will remain in the dark.
Why workers lose
30 May, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
The IMFs push to delink the decline in the share of labour in national income from the rise of finance, neoliberalism and globalisation leads to a set of banal prescriptions on how to deal with a problem that is at the centre of the crisis of capitalism today.
What the data tells us about 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas'?
26 May, 2017, Anamitra Roychowdhury
Modi rose to power by promising development for all, but his policies have fallen short in meeting any of the related targets, especially with respect to employment and livelihoods. A minor increase in farm income was met by the lowest-yet wage increase under MGNREGA. Belying the promises of the Skill India programme, Quarterly Employment Surveys show even greater joblessness. Resource allocation to health and education has seen negligible growth in the past three years. And the government narrative has shifted from development to moral policing. Modi rose to power by promising development for all, but his policies have fallen short in meeting any of the related targets, especially with respect to employment and livelihoods. A minor increase in farm income was met by the lowest-yet wage increase under MGNREGA. Belying the promises of the Skill India programme, Quarterly Employment Surveys show even greater joblessness. Resource allocation to health and education has seen negligible growth in the past three years. And the government narrative has shifted from development to moral policing. * This article was originally published in the Wire on May 26, 2017.
A Simple Arithmetic
25 May, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The advance GDP estimates for 2016-17, however calculated,show a grim picture of the economy. The real per capita income of the agriculture-dependent population, which constitutes half the country's populace, has remained stagnant or even marginally declined during the three years of the Modi government. While the pursuit of neoliberal policies can be held responsible for this, treating the aggregate growth as a great achievement for political mileage is unwarranted.
World Capitalist Crisis getting Accentuated
22 May, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
After a brief illusion of recovery in the U.S., the world economic crisis is getting accentuated. Trump administration would rather increase its fiscal deficit, if at all it does, through tax cuts than state expenditure under the hegemony of finance capital. This might further suppress consumption expenditure, already constricted by falling global wages. Such policies, paired with hostile protectionism, would make correcting over-production and hence overcoming world crisis, almost impossible.
The Illusion of an Economic Spring
17 May, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
While policy makers, analysts and observers paint a picture of an ongoing global economic recovery, the numbers seem to drag the optimists down.
Public Bank Privatisation in a Post-truth World
17 May, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Narendra Modi government appears to have decided to privatise public sector banks (PSBs). Preparations are underway with arguments being marshalled that "there is no alternative" to privatisation.
The Ways of the Judiciary
26 April, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
There is a disturbing common pattern underlying the cases of Babri Masjid and the location of liquor shops and bars; and it is that the proverbial blindness of justice appears to be absent in both cases.
Industrial Growth and Demonetization
24 April, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
Recent data on the manufacturing sector dispel all the lies that government propaganda has been peddling of late about demonetization having had no recessionary effect.


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