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

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A Tribute

Anirudh Lal Nagar

A L Nagar, a pre-eminent econometrician, taught for decades at the Delhi School of Economics and did his research at a time when the discipline was the source of important inputs for policy formulation; he was also responsible for the growth of The Indian Econometric Society.

The sad news about the death of A L Nagar in Pune takes me back five decades to the late 1950s and the early 1960s. That period can retrospectively be seen as the start of a new phase of Economics in the country not only as an academic discipline but also as a guide to policy formulation. This was indeed the right time for many things to happen, the way they did. A L Nagar was very much a part of these developments. In fact, the beginning had been made many years earlier with the setting up of institutions committed to quality teaching programmes, the adoption of a rigorous research agenda and an open debate on national economic policies with clear concerns about social problems that went beyond economics.

Particular mention must be made of the role played by P C Mahalanobis who set up the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) in Calcutta, V K R V Rao who ­designed the Delhi School of Economics (DSE) in Delhi and D R Gadgil under whose guidance the Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics (GIPE) got revitalised in Pune. Some other institutions that come to one’s mind in this context include Presidency College in Calcutta, the Bombay School of Economics and the Department of Economics and Statistics in Andhra University. All of these played an important role in training young minds to understand and analyse the problems facing the nation.

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