- Mitigating climate change through competition and cooperation
The Economic Times, November 19, 2022
Well formulated and enforced competition policies can act as catalysts and complements to efforts in mitigating and adapting to climate change.
- ESG frameworks must put people first
Livemint, November 14, 2022
As CoP-27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, puts the environment back in the global news, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) proposals have become the flavour of the day.
- COP27: India’s ancient learnings can help climate change mitigation efforts
Policy Circle, November 03, 2022
The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) starting on November 6 Sunday in Egypt is a platform for countries to discuss and act towards a sustainable future.
- Climate change: De-risking India’s banks, NBFCs
Policy Circle, October 17, 2022
Different studies by climate scientists indicate that a 1.5⁰C rise in average global temperature will cause 3-5 times increase in extreme weather events such as heat waves, droughts, and floods across the world.
- Pharmaceutical industry: Tight regulation key to curbing unethical practices
Policy Circle, September 28, 2022
It is high time the government put in place a stringent code of ethics for the pharmaceutical industry to put an end to bribery and other unethical practices. Medicines are key to a person’s defence against ailments.
- Climate technology: US will seek revamp of India’s IP regime
Policy Circle, September 21, 2022
Bilateral cooperation between India and the US rests on transfer of technology in the renewable energy sector.
- India vs China: The advanced industry production raceFinancial Express, June 16, 2022While China surged ahead in 1995 in terms of advanced industry production, the current odds are stacked in India’s favour. If correct actions are taken, we can easily surpass China.
- Defence cooperation hardens the India–Australia relationshipEast Asia Forum, May 13, 2022Emerging cooperation between India and Australia is widely understood as a response to the China challenge that is facilitated by multilateral groupings like the Quad. But the recent signing of the Australia–India Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (ECTA) on 2 April suggests the bilateral relationship is much more substantial.
- Diaspora: A living bridge between India and USThe South Asian Times, February 07, 2022The year 2021 was a difficult year for India and the United States, with both countries being ravaged by the pandemic. Yet, it was also a rewarding year for the bilateral relationship.
- Connecting the dots: Nuclear energy for ‘just transition’ in IndiaEconomic Times, February 03, 2022In the transition from conventional fossil fuel-based power generation to an alternative resource-based energy portfolio, nuclear energy plays a significant role to help economies achieving zero carbon footprint targets while reducing socio-economic poverty including offering alternatives to existing jobs.
- Arriving at an equitable response to the pandemicEconomicTimes, December 10, 2021World Trade Organisation (WTO) had been gearing up for its 12th Ministerial Conference (MC12) in Geneva end of November.
- IT Rules shy away from preserving encryptionEconomic Times, March 22, 2021“Summing-up, it appears that the IT rules may harm consumer welfare emanating from instant messaging services on parameters of privacy, trust and usage, in case the continued use of encryption is not ensured. It is therefore important for the government and service providers to continue with End-to-End Encryption on communication services, as a privacy enhancing tool,” says Mehta.
- Agro reforms in India: how can they be game changer for our farmersIn the Edition, December 09, 2020Our farmers sell potatoes at five rupees a kilo. We, the consumers, buy them at 40 rupees a kilo. However, the recently adopted reform measures will help our farmers get better prices, while consumers will have enhanced affordability.
- Indian telecom sector: Past and futureCommunications Today, October 28, 2020India, is the second-largest market in the world, a critical economic multiplier that cuts across all sections of the society, and amongst the most competitive and challenging businesses in the economy.
- What about migrants from Cooch Behar in this crisis?Voice of Jaipur, September 25, 2020As the nation witnessed a large scale reverse migration induced by the lockdown, one wondered whether readers in Jaipur are aware of a large group of migrant workers who are calm and restful. They are what is called Rajbanshis from Cooch Behar, a small district in northern West Bengal, situated just over Bangladesh.
- Avoid fragmentation of 5G technology standards while bridging the digital divideEconomic Times, June 10, 2020it is important to support the TSDSI is its endeavour of innovation for bridging the digital divide. However, it is imperative that its technology is harmonised with global technology standards, else it runs the risk of doing more harm than good, with respect to 5G in India.
- Why biodiversity conservation is necessary for dealing with the pandemicSouth Asia Monitor, June 05, 2020The theme for the World Environment Day 2020, which is observed on June 5 every year since 1972/74 is biodiversity, a concern that is both urgent and existential. Recent events, like the bushfires in Brazil and Australia, locust attacks in East Africa and South Asia, the tropical cyclones: Amphan and Nisarga on our coasts among 42 globally so far this year are the consequences of climate change.
- Huawei’s 5G trouble: A bitter pill that the world must swallowDeccan Chronicle, February 21, 2020Huawei, China’s biggest tech firm, and one of the world’s largest telecom equipment suppliers and phone manufacturers, seems to be breaking free from the shackles foisted on it by the United States. Its recent partial successes in India, the United Kingdom and the European Union are testament to this.
- Suresh Prabhu to Piyush Goyal: What’s the Way Forward for Trade and Industry?The Wire, June 02, 2019Piyush Goyal is aware that the trade portfolio is at the heart of the economy and a key part of creating jobs both in urban and rural areas.
- US must work towards reviving 2+2 dialogue without any preconditionsThe Asian Age, July 11, 2018An oft-used phrase these days in international relations is “rules-based international order”. Essentially, it means a shared commitment by all countries to conduct their activities in accordance with agreed rules that evolve over time, such as international law, regional security arrangements, trade agreements, immigration protocols, and cultural arrangements. Recently, however, the international rules-based order has come under severe threat.
- Reuse, recycle for a cleaner, healthier India, and let’s cut use of plastics tooAsian age, June 05, 2018Beat Plastic Pollution”, the theme for World Environment Day 2018, is a call for action and invites us all to consider how we can make changes in our everyday lives to reduce the heavy burden of plastic pollution on our cities, water bodies, forests and our own health
- Is America not a free country anymore?The Indian Economist, February 2, 2017After a year of election rhetoric by President Donald Trump on immigration has quickly put into action by signing executive orders, proving that he’ll stand on his controversial election promises. Signed on Friday, the executive order makes more than 134 million people temporarily homeless.
- The cult of india’s chief bankerInternational Affairs, July 7, 2016Raghuram Rajan finishes his three-year term as Reserve Bank of India Governor on 4 September but his exit will not be an ordinary one. Rajan has been targeted for speaking on issues beyond his mandate, which did not go down well with the Indian Government. All eyes are now set on who will be his successor and the lessons to learn from Rajan’s time as governor.
- Proactive alert civil society needed to fight against child rape casesDNA, Jaipur, November, 30, 2015Ever since the tragic Nirbhaya episode hit the headlines, reportage of child rapes (and murders in many cases) have increased causing our blood to curdle. A news report says that there has been an alarming surge in child rape cases in Rajasthan in the past one month. How can (ir)responsible men go around assaulting innocent infants just because they are incapable of resisting.
- To renew the civil servicesThe Indian Express, July 22, 2015Many young IAS officers often fall prey to the incompetency of the framework. Once inducted, postings and training seem to turn them into generalists rather than specialists…Civil servants should also be encouraged to move out and work for different sectors on a short-term basis to enrich their knowledge and enhance their motivation and efficiency. Therefore, lateral exit is as important as lateral entry. This has the potential to raise the civil services from its slump
- Make in ‘digital’ IndiaThe Asian Age, June 01, 2015Snapdeal, Flipkart, Ola Cabs, Zomato and Hike are good for the economy as well as for consumers.. currently generating over 70,000 jobs. In the next five years, this could grow to a quarter million jobs.. which means more choices and lower prices. In the midst of the debate on allowing foreign direct investment in retail and in e-commerce, it would be worthwhile recalling what Christine Lagarde, the International Monetary Fund chief, early this year said to a group of students at Delhi’s Lady Shri Ram College, “Yes, I would personally invest in India.” As it turns out, Ms Lagarde is not alone. Year on year investments in Indian tech startups are growing at exponential rates, and our startups have raised close to $3 billion, and that too in the last five years.
- Rajasthan alone witnesses 12.8% deaths due to road accidentsDNA, February 09, 2015Jaipur city continues to remain on top in terms of road accidents and deaths in the state and mishaps are also reported from other cities like Kota and Jodhpur…The cost of the accidents is about three per cent of our GDP, and our record is the worst in the world. There has been some improvement last year but much more has to be done. Data shows that over 80 per cent of all accidents are due to drivers’ fault, but it would be unfair to put all of it on drivers. The enabling environment also matters.
- Myanmar’s economy on a growth pathThe Asian Age, November 06, 2014Myanmar is now on the growth path with several countries providing aid and technical assistance. India is one of them, for several reasons. India shares a border with Myanmar and have a treaty to build the India-Myanmar Friendship Highway and the India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway. The Friendship Highway is lagging but one hope it will pick up speed soon after the government of India has agreed to increase its role. Both these roads will help our and Myanmar’s economy in a big way
- Don’t carry on, doctor!The Hindu Business Line, January 17, 2014The nexus between the pharma industry and doctors needs to be broken. A doctor friend and his wife said that a pharma company had paid for their recent trip to Bali. This was standard practice, the doctor said, rather nonchalantly. The idea, he explained, was to feel sufficiently incentivised to prescribe their medicines. Britain’s largest pharmaceutical company, GSK, has just said it will stop offering allurements to doctors to promote their drugs. It will also stop linking the bonuses of sales staff to the number of drugs they sell. This is a much appreciated initiative from a leading player in an industry that has for long been accused of unethical sales and marketing practices by governments and regulators.
- Healthcare industry is a rip-offThe Hindu Business Line, July 02, 2012The absence of regulatory oversight in the health industry needs urgent attention. A standard pricing policy is required in the healthcare sector to reduce costs. A proper regulatory system with strong enforcement mechanisms needs to be introduced to improve the quality of service delivery and keeping unscrupulous elements at bay. Local authorities at the State level should be properly empowered to ensure that minimum standards of services are offered across healthcare institutions. A speedy adoption of Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulation) Act 2010, by the States would bring some uniformity in quality of healthcare services across private and public sectors.
- Multi-level marketing – in need of cognate regulation?Times of India, December 30, 2011The country has been periodically rocked by scams of MLM companies and such frequent frauds indicate regulatory circumvention . Recently, two such frauds came to light where the citizens lost an estimated Rs 500 crore when two MLM investment companies, Gold Sukh and Eve Miracle, duped people of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The modus operandi of both was similar – spreading their schemes amongst gullible investors and running away when new joining stopped. The state governments, too, have been slow to react to MLM frauds. However, Kerala became the first state to set guidelines in September 2011 for MLM companies triggered by the Tycoon Empire International scam of about Rs 1000 crore.
- Making food subsidies work betterBusiness Standard, July 31, 2011The ADB study showed that the deserving poor in India received only 10 percent of the benefits from the system. The million dollar question is whether the system can be reformed at all. In my opinion, it is a Herculean task and well nigh impossible. Given that the system functions with many vested interests, efforts to reform it will be countered with ‘logical’ arguments by the polity, because the system feeds on political patronage, and hence all parties are unanimous in supporting it, like caste reservations in India.
- We’re part of participatory democracyThe Economic Times, April 25, 2011Much has been written about the successful campaign by Anna Hazare in raising the ante on corruption and getting the government to agree on the participation of the civil society in drafting the Lokpal Bill. Cynics and sceptics questioned the process on various grounds, including defining civil society advocates as self-appointed guardians of public interest and so on.
- The untapped promise of G-20The Economic Times, September 20, 2010Untapped promise of G-20The News, Pakistan, September 19, 2010Orchestrating development: The untapped promise of G-20The Financial Express, Bangladesh, September 17, 2010World leaders will gather in New York on September 20-22, 2010 to renew their pledge toward attaining the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The rationale for the differentiated approach adopted by the MDGs is sound: income poverty is not only highly correlated with the other mentioned forms of deprivation but often the alleviation of the former can only be facilitated on a sustainable basis if there is a concerted and direct attack on the latter.
- Renewing our pledge to help poorest nations raise living standardsShanghai Daily, China, September 17, 2010World leaders will gather in New York on September 20-22, 2010 to renew their pledge toward attaining the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The rationale for the differentiated approach adopted by the MDGs is sound: income poverty is not only highly correlated with the other mentioned forms of deprivation but often the alleviation of the former can only be facilitated on a sustainable basis if there is a concerted and direct attack on the latter.
- Tobin Tax: An idea whose time must not passFinancial Express, Bangladesh, July 25, 2010James Tobin’s suggestion of ‘throwing sands in the wheels of international finance’ by taxing currency trading has become a vociferously advocated initiative in the post crisis discourse on reformative regulation. The call is worthy to take a close look, as it emphasises the need for this tax in the context of ‘elusive’ capital while fiscal deficits are compounding human development deficits. With high debts with major governments, we believe that leveraging liquidity is desirable and hopefully, the political will is not ossified.
- Ensuring food security for allThe Economic Times, May 31, 2010The National Food Security Bill, 2010 that aims to provide subsidised foodgrain to the very poor is welcome, but its definition of ‘food security’ is too narrow. The architects of the food security bill have either forgotten the Rome declaration or ignored it. Right to food is not just about getting a minimum quantity of foodgrains at subsidised rates, but about broader issues of food security, which is both physical and economic . This right cannot be ensured by just having a legislation, but by considering the whole system of public welfare.
- A fortunate delayFinancial Express, India, May 30, 2010US-China currency affairThe News, Pakistan, May 30, 2010 The US-China currency affairFinancial Express, Bangladesh, May 27, 2010THE US treasury report ostensibly aimed at decreeing China a currency manipulator, has not been released as was scheduled for the 15th of April this year. The repeated postponement of the release is to avoid the tumult that may follow the US assuming an explicit stance on the currency issue and imposing tariffs on Chinese imports. The delay may be good for the US, China and even the rest of the world since it buys all parties some time to reflect on a way out of the delicate imbalance in regard to ‘balance of payments’ involving the Americans and Chinese. The current currency spat between the US and China raises several issues for global economic stability and welfare.
- Cop Flop: Civil society must step inEconomic Times, December 21, 2009With the end of Copenhagen talks and delegates returning home nearly empty-handed, one can safely say that this much-touted summit was, alas, a failure. It is not very difficult to diagnose the causes for this utter fiasco. Proactive measures to mitigate climate change impacts based on reduction in emissions, however, require tempering of growth aspirations which no country is yet willing to undertake. To resolve this conundrum, we need a new approach so that the world trundles along on a business-as-usual basis.
- Vouching for health vouchersThe Financial Express, May 08, 2008The healthcare system in India is very complex and there is a clear rural-urban divide. The irony is that medical tourism in India is getting popular with patients from other countries, but our own citizens do not have proper access to basic healthcare services. On the other hand government is finding it difficult to meet the costs of ever increasing public expectations for health services.
- Desperate measures!The Economic Times, May 03, 2008The current inflation scenario is a global phenomenon, being spurred by a host of factors, such as escalating commodity prices and buoyant demand amidst slowdown in some countries. Governments around the world are doing many things to rein it in.
- How justified is public expenditure on government schools?The Hindu Business Line, June 03, 2008Parents who want good quality education for their children are often constrained by affordability and their wards continue to languish in government schools with the attendant problems.
- Food crisis: The blame gameBusiness Line, May 21, 2008The world food crisis, despite all efforts to shift the blame, has been born out of life-style imbalances in the US and like-minded nations, characterised by an excess of nutrition and locomotion.
- Changing with times: Lateral entry into public servicesEconomic Times, February 11, 2008Lateral entry can bring immaculate thinking and innovation, which are the basis for effective formulation and implementation of administrative reforms. In addition, the flexibility to induct people with competence and expertise will give the much required boost to the system and help in serving the people better. Ensuring that the selection procedure for lateral entry is transparent, speedy and immune from political pressures represents a huge challenge for government.
- Etiquette: where do we stand?The Financial Express, November 24, 2007How can any country make progress with boorish behaviour fast becoming the norm? Our leaders do not even let out a whimper to tell people this awful behaviour should stop.
- Can India become an EU member?The Hindu Business Line, India, February 24, 2007The European Union is a unique success story and thus many countries are queuing up to join it. Starting from six countries in 1951, it now has 27 members with many more set to join.
- Ingenuity of dual-useThe Hindu Business Line, January 03, 2007Whenever one talks about dual-use technology, hackles rise. For, it is a touchy subject, and has been so ever since India exploded a nuclear device the second time.
- Runners vs travellersThe Hindu Business Line, October 06, 2006After retirement, civil servants often find a sinecure. If they can in such positions take orders from juniors, then why the compunction about doing so when in regular service?
- Food subsidy: How to reduce the billThe Hindu Business Line, August 05, 2005The food subsidy bill, consisting largely of farmer and consumer subsidies and support to the Food Corporation of India, has spiralled in the last ten years. A combination of measures, including new marketing avenues through cooperatives, price insurance and competitive bidding, may ensure equal benefits to producers and consumers.
- Bandung II: New hope for the poor?Daily Mirror, Colombo, May 23, 2005Leaders of 106 countries from Africa and Asia representing about three-fourths of humanity met in Indonesia in April to reinvigorate the spirit of 1995. The Bandung Conference led to the emergence of the Non-Aligned Movement and was the first step towards promoting South-South Cooperation.
- Partnering with greater accountabilityThe Hindu Business Line, India, April 15, 2005Trilateral cooperation can be an effective way of bringing “appropriate intermediate technology” and “appropriate policy” to developing countries.
- Crossed connections in open marketsBusiness Standard, India, January 24, 2005The first WTO dispute on trade and competition in the telecom sector points to some dangers for smaller economic powers and has been reported rather scantily in the Indian media.
- The Global Anti-globalisersThe Economic Times, January 24, 2004Curtains have come down on the alternate stage, the World Social Forum. There was nothing much, which came out, though over a hundred thousand people from all over the world converged at Mumbai to look for an alternative to the existing world order.
- Why Road Safety is the CasualtyThe Hindu Business Line, April 07, 2004Today, the World Health Day is being observed it with an extremely relevant theme: “Road Safety is No Accident”. In India, it is a continuing series of accidents. Therefore, policy-makers need to take a structured approach to building this component into road safety policies, and fast.
- Press Note 18: A way out of imbroglioThe Hindu Business Line, October 15, 2004The Government is keen to scrap Press Note 18 as it believes that it is restricting fresh FDI flows. Indeed, there is merit in this, and one needs to take a dispassionate view.
- Right To Protest: At What Cost?The Hindu Business Line, December 29, 2003Two recent court judgements relating to the right to protest have resulted in a raging public debate in the country. While the average Indian has welcomed the judgements, political parties, by and large, are not comfortable with them.