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My Notes 29-January-2018 29-01-2018

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29 January 2018


Government not serious about budget session : Opposition

Effectively there are only 4 days in this budget session. Opposition states that it is not sufficient to raise various issues nation is facing like - GST, women reservations, judiciary quagmire etc.



Election campaigns in India are privately funded. Most of the donations come from corporate sector. Lack of transparency, regulation is a major problem in electoral funding in India. It disturbs level playing field between various contesting candidates.

Electoral bonds are not a solution for the above situation for the reason that they promote anonymity. In this, unholy Politics - Business nexus is expected to grow. It will give rise to corruption and corporate control of the Government.

Introduction of electoral bonds need to be read along with other reforms initiated by the Government in political funding that can increase secret private corporate funding to political parties. They are

  1. Lifting of 7.5% of profits as a limit to donate political parties.
  2. Redefining foreign companies under FCRA to allow them to donate to political parties.
  3. Refusal of political parties to come under RTI.

so, strong disclosure norms, strict statutory limits on election expenses and ceiling on corporate donations to political parties will help India to reform the process. Along with this, state funding of elections need to be explored. Already many committees including Indrajit Gupta committee, 2nd ARC recommended for state funding of elections.


Red alert on the green index

India is ranked poorly below china in the environmental performance index - 2018. It ranked at 177 among 180 countries. This happened inspite of notifying strict environmental norms like

  1. Strict environmental norms for coal fired power plants
  2. Bharat stage 6 emission norms
  3. Solar power targets
  4. Clean Ganga action plan etc.

The reason appears to be the failure at implementation level.

In this context, India shall note that Environmental costs are too serious for economy. Poor are affected disproportionately compared to rich. These environmental and human costs need to be taken in to consideration in pricing coal based production of electricity. Pricing petrol and diesel to subsidise electric vehicles are the various steps Government can look in to. Changing the energy mix is the way forward.


banking on good faith

Recapitalisation alone do not solve ongoing banking crisis in india. Structural reforms are needed to maximise the recapitalisation effort.

Govt has initiated few reforms with recapitalisation like

  1. Closer monitoring of big ticket loans
  2. Identifying niche areas where bank has strengths
  3. Restricting corpoarte exposure to 25%
  4. A new performance management system et.

But other important measures like consolidation through mergers etc are missing.


Rebuilding our cities

Building codes, by laws in the country are formulated for the cities in their early formations. Now, they grew by 10-12 times and these by laws need to be redefined. In this scenario, redefining cities as spaces for migrant communities is important. If not other model is to interwoven home, entertainment, commerce, recreation needs of different communities.


What are we teaching robots?

Artificial intelligence is every where and affecting every profession. It is leading to white collar automation. - if it takes our prejudices in to machines it can become a version of our worst self.



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