Commentary

The Vikas Dubey Phenomenon: Criminal-Police-Politician Nexus and Encounter Raj Imperil the Rule of Law in Uttar Pradesh

The Vikas Dubey episode marks more than yet another entry in the lengthening list of ‘encounter’ killings in Uttar Pradesh. It illustrates key principles of the dominant model of statecraft in today’s India and explains some important basics of what is popularly called the criminal-police-politician nexus. It points to a new level of criminalization of politics, and crisis and collapse of constitutional governance.

Political Crisis in Rajasthan: Alarming Signals for Indian Democracy

Volatility continues in Rajasthan about the future of the state government. We will have to keep watching the developments in Rajasthan High Court and State Assembly to know whether the government is able to weather the storm. Regardless of the eventual outcome of the present crisis, what should really be a matter of greater concern is that such a destabilization bid is going on in the middle of a raging epidemic when the entire focus should be on saving the state and the people from the scourge of the novel coronavirus.

Saffronised Slashing of CBSE Curriculum

In the wake of the extraordinary situation created by the ongoing pandemic, loss of teaching and lockdown, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) was advised to revise the curriculum so as to reduce the course load for the students of from class 9 to class 12. Though the syllabus was slightly revised in April 2020 as well, on July 7, Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank', the HRD minister, took to twitter to announce the decision to rationalize the sylla-bus by up to 30%, while retaining the core concepts.

Notes on Migrant Workers: Key Issues and Urgent Tasks

MOBILITY and migration have all along been central to the formation and growth of the working class. From villages to towns, from towns to cities and metropolises -  workers have all along been moving and relocating themselves as workers. There are also patterns and levels of migration that can be classified according to distance and duration: inter-district, inter-state and inter-country migration, seasonal and longer-term migration, and so on. But in spite of the pervasive presence of migrant workers, they have remained largely invisible.

Foil the BJP-JDU Plot to Steal the Bihar Elections

INDIA's Home Minister Amit Shah, who remained invisible for most of India’s prolonged lockdown so far, addressed a digital rally for Bihar on 7 June. Though Shah called it only a ‘Jan Samvad’ or ‘communication with the people’, for all purposes it inaugurated the BJP’s poll campaign for the Assembly elections due later this year. The rally was also part of the Modi government’s mega campaign to celebrate the sixth anniversary of Modi’s prime ministership and pat its own back in the name of what it calls the Modi success story of combating the Covid19 pandemic.

Protect Reservations and Social Justice

ORAL observations by a Supreme Court bench that reservations for oppressed and backward classes are not a fundamental right guaranteed by the Constitution, have once again strengthened apprehensions of concerted moves to weaken social justice provisions. The SC bench made the observations while refusing to entertain a petition filed by all political parties from Tamil Nadu seeking 50% OBC reservation in the all-India NEET seats surrendered by states.

Modi's Covid19 Stimulus Package: Monumentally Deceptive and Disastrous

IN his 12 May address while preaching his gospel of treating the Covid19 pandemic crisis as an opportunity and outlining his latest rhetoric of an Aatma Nirbhar Bharat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi dropped some big numbers. He announced a package worth around 20 lakh crore rupees (20K billion rupees or $ 265 bn) or about 10% of India’s GDP. Over the next five days Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman and her deputy Anurag Thakur (better known for his vitriolic Goli Maro speeches) have given us the details of this package in five tranches.

Enslaving India's Workers and Renting Out India To Global Capital Is Not the Way to Self Reliance

EXACTLY seven weeks after he had announced the countrywide lockdown giving just four hours, Narendra Modi addressed the nation again at 8 PM on May 12. When he had announced the lockdown for 21 days, he had invoked the popular Hindi saying ‘Jan hai toh jahan hai’ indicating thereby that his government would do everything necessary and possible to save lives. The seven weeks that elapsed between 25 March and 12 May however only saw India lose lives in hundreds and thousands to both Covid-19 and the chaotic and cruel lockdown enforced by the Modi government.