ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Decentralisation, Development and ‘Elite Capture’

Decentralised Governance, Development Programmes and Elite Capture by D Rajasekhar, M Devendra Babu and R Manjula, Singapore: Springer Nature, 2018; pp 169, Price not mentioned.


Modernity and Democracy in India

Unresolved agrarian question, slow pace of industrial development and distorted economic growth of the service sector, have all led to the nature of economic development that is not symmetrical or equally poised with political democracy and rights. As long as capitalism in India remains backward to a large extent, in agriculture and industry, and as long as the distorted development continues, we will be stuck with the impasse of backward-looking nationalism and authoritarian populism. Current impasse is a product of achieving political modernity and a superstructure without its accompanying economic basis.


The Mandal System in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh

The mandal system came into existence as an administrative reform, as part of reducing the size of erstwhile taluks and making them more effective and manageable. The decentralisation of taluks into mandals was done with a two-pronged strategy of modernising the revenue administration, record-keeping as well as further decentralising the panchayati raj system. It was hoped that the division of erstwhile large taluks into mandals could make them more manageable, and also that the administration of the state government, especially the revenue administration, will become modernised.

Urban Governance and Right to the City

The right to the city means more than just access to its resources. It suggests that people, particularly the marginalised, not only have the right to inhabit a city, but also the right to design, reshape and transform it. An analysis of urban governance in our country keeping in mind this overlooked human right.

Learning to Read, Reading to Know

For an enlightened culture to emerge, both the state and civil society should aim to overcome the narrowing of identities by promoting, especially among children, the habit of reading and knowing the larger world. 


Agricultural Marketing System and Adthidars

The conditions that the authors of “Commission Agent System: Significance in Contemporary Agricultural Economy of Punjab” (EPW, 7 November 2015) recount also hold true of other states. In Telangana, the commission agents, adthidars, virtually control agrarian markets.

Word Wars

The disputation over Telugu highlights the need to protect our linguistic integrity and federal diversity in the face of the hegemony of a few globalised languages.

Education Does Have a Role

This is with reference to the editorial “Burying Grass-roots Democracy” (EPW, 10 October 2015).

Whose Language Is It Anyway?

The political games played with our regional/vernacular languages is a matter of serious concern. The distortion of Telugu, for example, by both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh news media is a cause for concern.

RTE in Karnataka

The resistance and refusal of private schools in Karnataka to admit children applying to them under the right

Civil Society Activism

This is a comment with regard to the “Perspectives on Civil Society” by Neera Chandhoke (“Can Civil Society Reorder Priorities in India?”) and Mihir Shah (“Civil Society and Indian Demo­cracy: Possibilities of Social Transformation”) (both in EPW, 22 February 2014).


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