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

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Lockdown and Reopening the Economy

This article explores the spatial dynamics of COVID-19—with nationwide and partial lockdowns’ in its two waves, respectively—in India by employing the location quotient and univariate Moran’s I statistics with various variables representing spatial adjacency, proximity, population, population density, urbanisation, migration, and health infrastructure variables. The results suggest that though geographical proximity to the hotspot states played an important role in triggering the outbreak during both the waves, it could not influence the spatial clustering at the sluggish phase of the pandemic.

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Stock Market and Corporate Firms

This paper highlights the possible consequences of the pandemic on the stock markets. It notes that higher profitability in the past years, better growth opportunities in the stock market, and being a stand-alone firm have a favourable impact on stock price reactions to COVID-19 shocks and, hence, they make such firms more resilient.

COVID-19 and the Everyday Challenges of Indigenous Peoples of Tripura

Although there were some responses from the government and community sociocultural organisations to deal with an unforeseen crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic, it brought enormous challenges in the everyday life of indigenous peoples of Tripura. In this article, the everyday challenges faced by the rural indigenous peoples of Tripura during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and the immediate response by the government and community sociocultural organisations are unravelled.

Economic Impact of COVID-19-induced Lockdown on Rural Households

Through a series of data visualisations, the article attempts to illustrate the economic repercussions of the COVID-19-induced lockdown of 2020 on rural households. It focuses on how consumption, labour and income, healthcare, access to relief programmes and migration were effected by the lockdown in six major states.

Container Crisis and High Freight Costs

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent worldwide lockdown(s) have adversely affected the functioning of global supply chains. The restrictions on navigation of vessels across the global supply chains resulted in acute shortages of the containers, subsequently escalating ocean freight rates. High freight rates have severely affected India’s exports competitiveness in the global markets. The crisis has exposed the lacklustre approach of the government in dealing with container shortages, leading to skyrocketing freight rates.

The Great Indian Kitchen

The Great Indian Kitchen makes a subtle but important connection between housework, domestic violence, and the denial of women’s autonomy.

COVID-19 Economic Stimulus and State-level Performance of Power Distribution Companies

As part of the COVID-19 economic stimulus package, the Government of India increased the borrowing limit of the states from 3% to 5% of the gross state domestic product. The power sector reform at the state level is one of the criteria to avail this extra borrowing. The efficiency parameters of the power sector are analysed here, and it is observed that there are statewise differentials in the financial and operational parameters. The average aggregate technical and commercial losses that should have been 15% by 2018–19, presently, on average, stand at 26.15%. The average cost of supply–average revenue realised has also widened. The operational parameters indicate widening inefficiencies across states in the power infrastructure.

Coal Woes: Are They Touch and Go?

To combat the coal shortage and prevent its recurrence, meticulous and efficient planning holds the key.

RBI’s Efforts towards ‘Pandexit’ Go beyond Policy Measures

In a proactive move, the Reserve Bank of India rescued the economy with its innovative—blended conventional and unconventional—monetary policy measures. Low-interest rates, aligning targeted liquidity, and granting moratorium coupled with forbearance to enable banks to restructure loans, mandated the Kamath panel to work out modalities to restructure corporate sector loans. After affirming stability and orderliness of the financial sector throughout the crisis period, it rightly signalled descent towards normalisation paving for pandexit manoeuvring the tool of variable reverse repo rate.

Export-induced Loss in Employment and Earnings during the First Year of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unprecedented exogenous shock in the world economy unlike the global financial crisis in 2008, which was endogenously determined in the structure of capitalist financial market. Given the fact that Indian export sector significantly contributes to the Indian economy in general and employment in particular, it is worth examining how the Indian gross domestic product and exports changed in comparison with the world GDP and world exports respectively, in the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020–21 vis-à-vis the GFC in 2008. Which industries are affected the most, in terms of export loss, during this COVID-19 crisis? What have been the consequences of these falling export on employment and earnings in the Indian export sector? This study estimates that in the COVID-19 year 2020–21, Indian exports have fallen by `3.74 lakh crore, with a plausible loss of direct employment by 5.06 lakh and an estimated loss of earnings around `12.4 thousand crore across 85 commodities.

The Pandemic and Its Discontents in India

India and the Pandemic: The First Year, Essays from The India Forum by The India Forum, 2021; Hyderabad: Orient Blackswan; pp xvii + 335, ` 695.

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