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Understanding Farmers' Rage
03 October, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
The recent eruption of farmers’ agitations across India is another case in the current phase of rural discontent. While the anger of the cultivators is being expressed in local, regional and national agitations, the much-hyped official attempts to placate farmers have turned out to be only more jumlas.
Pakistan: Who needs a crisis?
29 August, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
As Pakistan’s new Prime Minister, Imran Khan faces the current balance of payments, its important to look at Pakistan’s debt history, especially in light of its association with China’s Belt and Road Initiative. With IMF’s support to Pakistan in the past, it is to be seen how a proxy stand-off between a retreating power and a rising one plays out.
Crop Insurance: Another dressed up scheme
02 August, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) launched in 2016 which is supplemented with Restructured Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme (RWBCIS), have failed to deliver what it had promised. The number of farmers insured under this scheme has fallen and the claims paid to farmers has fallen from 98% to 61%. The scheme seems to be benefitting the insurance companies as there has been rise in gross premiums paid to these companies by government.
Empty Promises
18 July, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Together with measures like loan write-offs offered by some BJP States and an ostensibly much-improved crop insurance scheme (PMFBY), this hike in MSPs is seen to have confirmed the pro-farmer tilt of the Narendra Modi government. The timing of the Modi government’s MSP hike for kharif crops leads to the question of whether it is backed by the financial allocations needed to deliver on them.
The Push for Privatizing Banks
11 June, 2018, Prabhat Patnaik
Historically, the push for bank privatization which has gathered momentum with a rise in tendencies to take to neo-liberal policies. The arguments for privatization have been put forward time and time again, depending on economic circumstances. As international finance capital demands outright privatization to control financial resources and popularizes the conception of social interest best served through free finance, the NPA crisis in India has become the justification of the day.
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.
Can banking recover?
27 February, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
Recovery of the banking sector will require stricter adherence to sound banking rules and more transparency from public and private players. And most of all, this applies to the regulators themselves and the government that frames all this.
Budget 2018-19: No money where the mouth is
20 February, 2018, C.P. Chandrasekhar
Rhetoric and meagre show of financing aimed at the neglected and marginalized sections, to address the pre-election imperative of the Budget have not even been able to fulfil the irrational fiscal deficit targets of the FM, even with massive disinvestment and absence of fund allocation.
Budget 2018: The Finance Ministry's Grey Shades of 'Pink'
02 February, 2018, Jayati Ghosh
Even the vaguely “pink” effort in the Economic Survey is whitewashed in the finance minister’s Budget speech that is heavily based on stereotypical gender roles for women, and even that completely disappears when we get to the actual budget allocations.
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.
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.
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.
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.
'Riskless Capitalism' in India: Bank credit and economic activity
07 August, 2017, Rohit Azad, Prasenjit Bose & Zico Dasgupta
The Indian growth story of the 2000s cannot be over-simplistically explained as a result of market-oriented reforms. Public sector bank credit-financed investments, particularly in the infrastructure sector, played a significant role in sustaining growth, most crucially after the global economic crisis. Such a growth trajectory, however, proved to be unsustainable with the expansionary phase coming to an end in 201112 and bad loans piling up in the banking system.
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.
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 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.
The Question Of Farm - Loan Waiver
23 June, 2017, Prabhat Patnaik
The primary reason why loan-waiver is being demanded at present is not an output fall owing to any natural calamity. It is the price-fall on account of the bumper harvest that underlies this demand. It is the breaking down of an appropriate institutional mechanism that is responsible for the peasants distress and periodic demands for loan-waivers.
Crop prices and farmers' unrest
20 June, 2017, C.P. Chandrasekhar & Jayati Ghosh
Distressed farmers are demanding loan waivers, but that should not deflect attention from what needs to be done and undone to address the roots of the agrarian crisis.

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