October 30, 2016

Across the aisle: The case for creative destruction

In my column on October 2, 2016 (How free is freedom in India?), I had made a brief reference to the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Report and concluded thus: “Despite the reforms since 1991, which is a remarkable story, the State-to-firm interface remains a problem. What needs to be done and what can be done deserve a separate […]
October 23, 2016

Across the aisle: Wake up and smell the coffee

Even by the usual standards it was a l-o-n-g communique consisting of 109 paragraphs, each marked not by a number but by a bullet point. I can imagine what would have happened when the deputies gathered to draft the communique. I am reminded of how a camel was created: the Creator appointed a committee to design a horse and when […]
October 18, 2016

Across the aisle: If we kill dissent, we will kill liberty

According to the Director General of Military Operations (DGMO), there were “surgical strikes” on “launch pads” situated “along” the Line of Control in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. I believe the DGMO, as we have always believed past Director Generals and past Chiefs of the Army. The DGMO said that “significant casualties” had been inflicted on the enemy but he did not […]
October 9, 2016

Across the aisle: Bad ideas will drive out the good

We have a new Governor of the Reserve Bank of India, we have a Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), and we have their first statement on monetary policy. It is tempting to read the tea leaves! The MPC’s statement, with unanimous support, is significant not only for the cut in the policy repo rate but also for the analysis of the […]
October 2, 2016

Across the aisle: How free is freedom in India?

Twenty-five years after the Congress government under P V Narasimha Rao ushered in “liberalisation” of the economy, India has still not come to terms with the idea of economic freedom. This is disappointing for a country that was at the forefront of the struggle for political freedom for all countries. We understand political democracy, but we do not understand economic […]
September 25, 2016

In search of a Pakistan policy

It is said that ‘Hard words break no bones’. But they have a way of coming back to haunt the speaker. I am prepared to allow much latitude for a leader who had never been a minister in the Central government and was, by his own admission, an outsider so far as Delhi and the Central government were concerned. Even […]
September 18, 2016

Across the aisle: Why not try alternative approach?

I am sure the Home Minister meant well when he said that he expected the situation in the Kashmir Valley to return to normal soon, but it has not and there are no signs it will. The Home Secretary was sending a message of support to the security forces when he said that the situation was improving, but it is […]
September 11, 2016

Across the aisle: Near collapse of justice-delivery system

LAST year, the Supreme Court struck down the Constitution (Ninety-ninth Amendment) Act, 2014 that enabled the constitution of the National Judicial Appointments Commission. The Court declared that the Collegium of judges would have exclusive authority to select candidates for appointment as judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts. There are as many people who criticised the judgement as […]