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Calcutta Diary

AM As long as 'tigerisation

Calcutta Diary

AM Corruption, a recent debate in Calcutta lazily, complaisantly, almost happily, agreed, is a way of life. One does not confront, or engage in battle with a way of life, one gets adjusted to it.

Calcutta Diary

AM It is with the greatest reluctance that the ministry of labour has been made to disgorge the specifics of the much-heralded National Renewal Policy. Contrary to the nervous half-promises of the prime minister and the finance minister, care would not be taken not to reduce the net deployment of labour. The number of public sector units to be closed down is still indeterminate, but retrenchment of workers will be across-the-board and a minimum of 5,00,000 are to lose their jobs.

Calcutta Diary

AM India is increasingly resembling a closely held unincorporated business venture. The setting is the predatory days of early capitalism. Exploitation, because it is so total and so totally unaccompanied by a feeling of guilt or shame on the part of the exploiters, has a certain aura of purity about it.

Calcutta Diary

AM A second floor apartment in Churchill Chambers, a run-down building on Merewether Road, just behind the Taj, in Bombay, was the abode, from the day The Economic Weekly was born and even earlier, of Sachin Chaudhuh, founder-editor of that journal as well as of its successor, the EPW The apartment encapsulated within its walls the history of a meaningful chapter of post- independence India. As India formally ceases to be independent, or ceases to be an integer, it is as well that that apartment too has been detached from its antecedents.

Calcutta Diary

AM The United States has not changed much, nor its Democratic Party. It is bourgeois territory par excellence and, within that limitation, the Democratic Party still champions the cause of the deprived and the underprivileged, both categories relevantly defined. It is its supposed counterpart, the Indian National Congress, and the government the latter runs, which have changed beyond description. A party of fierce nationalists has been transformed into a party of compradors.

Calcutta Diary

AM It is impossible to prognosticate where this absurdity of a country will be five or ten years hence. The good Americans, along with their cohorts and cronies, will nibble away at the nation's external suzerainty. Internally it is a much greater carnival of chaos. Communities, castes, sub-castes, sects will continue to jump at one another's throat. Rather, they will be manipulated to jump at one another's throat.

Calcutta Diary

AM If the Union of India is not currently going through the process of being destroyed, there is at least no question that it is being 'de-constructed'. The Constitution of India might have been there for four and a half decades, a dense thicket of formal procedures might still feature the daily schedule of administration, a prime minister might trot the globe, a president might end his tenure and be succeeded by a new one; the Union of India is nonetheless now all things to all men. Jacques Derrida and his arcane theory of 'de-construction' are thus having their vindication in an altogether strange context.

Calcutta Diary

AM After seventy years, the Russian revolution

Calcutta Diary

AM What is good for the great bulls operating in the stock exchanges is good for the Indian republic. The message was driven home to the top brass of the 'nationalised' banks and public financial institutions. The economy might be doing badly, the rate of industrial growth might actually be negative, but the miracle-makers were at work and deserved the solidest support from the state One must not ask whether the funds with which they played their tricks in the market were being provided against certain junk papers* To inconvenience the bulls was akin to inconveniencing the nation.

Calcutta Diary

AM Do we, from this distance of ten thousand and more miles, quite grasp the implications of what happened in Los Angeles and beyond in end-April and early May?

Calcutta Diary

AM Do we, from this distance of ten thousand and more miles, quite grasp the implications of what happened in Los Angeles and beyond in end-April and early May?

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