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

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Why India’s Vaccine Companies Are Profiteering in the Pandemic

The crisis of COVID-19 vaccines in India is a consequence of government policies dating back decades. Private foundations led by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have engineered a shift in research and manufacture of essential technologies such as vaccines to private biotech labs and factories. Companies such as the Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech can dictate terms and prices of vaccines developed with public support because the closure of public vaccine manufacturing units over a decade ago has left the government at the mercy of the private sector.

Farmers’ Politics in West Bengal

After the end of 34 years of the Left Front rule, West Bengal has seen a renewed emphasis on agriculture. A decade-long ethnographic study conducted during and after the political transition unravels the reasons why such emphasis fails to benefit the small and marginal farmers, at places where...

Wit, Irreverence, and a Mirror

Legendary comedians Jaspal Bhatti and Moin Akhter on either side of the India–Pakistan border showed the mirror to their hypocritical governments and societies, but with hearty laughs.

The Making of a Masked Mandate

The discourse around the forthcoming Bihar assembly elections of 2020 is rife with the usual rhetoric of development brandished by the ruling alliance, while the opposition stresses the underdevelopment of the state. This election is also driven by caste calculations. But the distinctive factor is that of the migrant workers which could prove to be a game changer.

Bihar Assembly Elections, 2020

Caste complacency of the ruling combination necessarily deflects attention from critical self-evaluation.

Incomplete Story of the Political Economy of the Power Sector

Mapping Power: The Political Economy of Electricity in India’s States edited by Navroz K Dubash, Sunila S Kale and Ranjit Bharvirkar, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2018; pp 400, ₹ 1,195.

Reimagining Public Policy Studies in India

Public Policy: A View from the South by Vishal Narain, New Delhi: Cambridge University Press, 2018; pp x + 213, ₹ 495.

Rapid Growth of Private Universities

Over the last two decades India has witnessed a rapid rise in the number of private universities. Various state governments have encouraged and justified this growth in order to increase enrolment in higher education, and private capital has welcomed this state encouragement. However, the implications of this move on access to higher education and the variety of other challenges that it presents are debated. Based on higher education enrolment data from the All India Survey on Higher Education, this paper attempts to study the social and academic character of universities to understand the consequences of the rapid growth of private universities for the university space as a whole.

Is Periodic Labour Force Survey, 2017–18 Comparable with Employment–Unemployment Survey, 2011–12?

Towards improving the existing system of collecting data on socio-economic parameters, the National Sample Survey Office introduced the Periodic Labour Force Survey in 2017–18 by replacing its previous quinquennial rounds on the employment–unemployment situation. There has been a significant restructuring of the previously existing questionnaire, survey methodology, and inquiry schedule. The advantages of the new PLFS data are listed, and inputs for further improvements are provided.

RBI’s Subservience to the Government Is Systemic, Not Ideological

The autonomous functioning of the Reserve Bank of India has been, if anything, an exception rather than the rule.

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