The Indian Economy Blog

Archive for the 'Infrastructure' Category

Helping Indian Farmers

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

Aaditya Mattoo, Deepak Mishra and Ashish Narain, in the Times of India, on the problem and solution for Indian agriculture: So, here’s the paradox: the hard-working Indian farmer — one of the world’s low-cost producers — is unable to compete globally. What is hobbling the Indian giant? A recent World Bank study finds that the [...]

TV over Toilets

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

Televisions don’t need sewers Preeti Aroon, over at FP Passport, asks why the slum-dwellers of Dharavi prefer TVs to toilets. I’ve visited Mumbai many times myself, and I’ve always wondered about the TV antennas poking through thatched-roofed shacks. How can “these people” buy TVs when their kids are malnourished and wading through sewage-infested water? I [...]

Surely, FT Can Find Better Columnists On India

Friday, April 20th, 2007

Anyone who writes about there being “two Indias” is necessarily wrong. Anyone who describes India’s jettisoning of the licence raj in 1991 using words like “neo-liberal” is necessarily confused. And anyone who writes about Indian agriculture quoting P Sainath and no one else is necessarily unbalanced. Rajinder Sahota, writing in the Financial Times (they actually [...]


Monday, March 19th, 2007

This video of the Nandigram issue is distressing. I think one of the most cogent views on the SEZ issue are summed up by Nitin Desai in the article Are SEZs a good idea?

What Is It About Bandwidth in India?

Friday, February 23rd, 2007

There is no shortage of hype about India’s superpowerdom in IT and Telecom. However, the truth seems to be far from it. Why is it that there is not a single provider out there who is capable of providing decent broadband access, for instance? The prevalent logic seems to be that the only thing that [...]

Kyrgyzstan & Zimbabwe Offer Higher ICT Opportunities Than India: ITU

Friday, February 23rd, 2007

Wonk nirvana The 2007 ICT Opportunity Index, the ITU explains, “has benefited from the expertise of several international and research organizations, (and) is based on a carefully selected list of indicators and methodology. It is an important tool to track the digital divide by measuring the relative difference in ICT Opportunity levels among economies and [...]

On Corporate Political Resposibility

Wednesday, February 21st, 2007

Yes, the IT industry has to do more for India. But not what Amartya Sen says it should Amartya Sen made a JFK-esque speech asking the IT industry what it had done for India. His point was not that the IT industry isn’t doing anything for the economy at large—he concedes that it is—but that [...]

A Brief Introduction To RISC — Rural Infrastructure & Services Commons

Tuesday, January 23rd, 2007

I had been pondering about India’s rural development for a while before I signed up as a Reuters Fellow at Stanford University in Sept 2001. Later, Vinod Khosla and I co-authored the concept paper. This is a short version introducing the why, what, how of RISC. There is a distinct possibility that RISC may be [...]

What Happened To Government Reform?

Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007

TCA Srinivasa-Raghavan puts Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the dock: It is also useful to dwell on the imperatives that have been at work. Basically, the public and private thing, for instance in infrastructure, is the result of bad governance. The governments transfer the little money they collect from the cities to the countryside because [...]

Selling The Family Ore To China

Friday, December 8th, 2006

Contemplating a ban on iron-ore exports is absurd The bulk of India’s iron-ore exports last year went to China. This is being bandied as something sinister by those who dislike China because of geopolitical reasons and by those who dislike selling ‘our’ ore to ‘them’ instead of letting ‘our’ manufacturers have it. 1. So why [...]

Of Knowledge-based Interventions In Agriculture

Thursday, October 19th, 2006

How much of Dr Manmohan Singh’s talk on reforming agriculture will get translated into action? Inaugurating the Second Agriculture Summit 2006 organised jointly by the Ministry of Agriculture and FICCI, the Prime Minister declared that the endeavour of his government would be to bridge each of the four deficit viz. the public investment and credit [...]

Investment And Infrastructure In India

Thursday, October 19th, 2006

Last week Cherian Thomas and Anand Krishnamoorthy had an article on Bloomberg where they suggested that lack of clear investment rules may impede the inflow of investment funds which could make possible the truly daunting programme of infrastructural works which are needed in India between now and 2010. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh may struggle [...]

China, India And The Global Economy

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Ajay Shah alerts us to a draft volume published by the World Bank (free download) titled Dancing with Giants: China, India and the global economy. Drawing upon the latest research, this volume analyzes the influences on the rapid future development of these two countries and examines how their growth is likely to impinge upon other [...]

Light At The End Of The Tunnel?

Thursday, August 3rd, 2006

Is India finally improving its infrastructure? Amidst all the hype regarding the Indian economy, the inevitable “Yes, India is doing well, but..” statement is most likely to peg India’s poor infrastructure as public enemy # 1. For instance, Janet Yellen in a mostly optimistic essay, A Monetary Policymaker’s Passage to India says In the view [...]

Vidarbha Whodunit

Saturday, July 1st, 2006

Farmers are killing themselves because the government has denied them economic freedom

But if the crisis is an opportunity to reform agriculture, will Prime Minister Manmohan Singh take it up?

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