How to secure equal representation in India’s parliament?

Indian women voters wait patiently in a long queue at a polling station during the fifth phase of the Indian General elections in Bhopal, India on 17 April 2014. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Vidisha Mishra, Observer Research Foundation

The parliament of a representative democracy is essentially a mirror of the democracy’s society. Naturally, societies still entrenched in patriarchal constructs have male-dominated legislatures. While women are still globally underrepresented in decision-making roles, the Indian Parliament in particular continues to rank among the lowest in the world in women’s representation. Read more…

Will Modi lead India to new heights?

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who to become a statesman will have to ‘become comfortable with nurturing several CEOs like himself’. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Rajiv Kumar, Centre for Policy Research

There are some uncanny similarities between Narendra Modi and Barack Obama. Both have risen from humble beginnings, both are charismatic public speakers and consummate communicators on social media, both were relative outsiders to the capitals where they now hold the most powerful office, and neither is dependent on their political party for their electoral success. Read more…

Realising India’s economic potential

Indian labourers work at a brick manufacturing unit on the outskirts of Hyderabad on 2 March 2015. India's factory output in February grew at its slowest pace in five months as business demands remained dim. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Peter Drysdale, East Asia Forum

India is a very large labour-abundant economy with a rapidly growing workforce and its manufacturing sector might be expected to be the primary driver of its economic growth. In fact, the manufacturing sector has contributed little to income growth and its share in total merchandise exports has been declining, as recent OECD analysis points out. Read more…

India still needs to enter the market for reform

Indian workers carry paddy seedlings for planting in a field at village Verka near Amritsar, India, 06 July 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Alok Sheel, Government of Kerala

There appears to be growing euphoria that it is India’s ‘manifest destiny’ to overtake China and become the fastest growing major economy and a major world power. But unless India successfully introduces productivity reforms and opens its markets, this ‘destiny’ will remain a pipe dream. Read more…

‘Lalitgate’ narrows windows of Modi’s popularity

Protestors demonstrate outside the home of India's Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj on June 15, 2015 Swaraj is alleged to have tried to help Lalit Modi, the former chief of India's richest sports league, obtain British travel documents, according to Reuters. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Mahendra Ved, New Delhi

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is in trouble. He and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) romped to power in 2014 on an anti-graft and pro-governance platform. Today, thanks to what is being popularly dubbed as ‘Lalitgate’, both Modi and his party are seen as condoning nepotism. Read more…

Job growth not GDP growth matters for India

Employment news leaflets and announcements for government jobs are displayed for sale on a street in New Delhi. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Rajiv Kumar, CPR

Extensive commentary on the latest Indian GDP growth numbers has been unable to clear prevailing confusion on whether the economy is in its recovery phase or not. It would be more useful to focus on the data that the ordinary Indian cares about: jobs growth and employment. Yet, unfortunately, employment still does not seem to figure as a priority for Indian policymakers. This lack of attention to employment in a country that boasts the youngest population in the world is simply incomprehensible. Read more…

Modi can lead South Asia’s regional and global integration

An Indian bystander looks at a part of a bronze statue of Lachit Borphukan, which is set to be installed in the middle of the River Brahmaputra, in Guwahati on May 21, 2015. Lachit Borphukan was a commander in the Ahom kingdom known for his leadership in the 1671 Battle of Saraighat that thwarted a drawn-out attempt by Mughal forces. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Sourabh Gupta, Samuels International

India’s domestic and international economic choices have not always been the wisest.

At independence, India was determined to transcend the distorted pattern of economic integration with the world that two centuries of exploitative colonialism had engendered. But in the process, it ended up effectively locking itself out of global trade and investment flows altogether—just at the time when advanced countries were tearing down their mercantilist tariff walls to make way for the liberal, post-war trading order. Read more…