P Chidambaram

Who will save the Constitution?

Who will save the Constitution?

The question that remains is, will the legislators elected on their respective party symbols remain faithful to the party, to the voters who supported them, to the unwritten rules of a democracy, and to the Constitution of India?

Let me remind myself — before others remind me — of what I wrote on March 19, 2017. Elections had been concluded in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Goa and Manipur. The BJP won in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, the Congress won in Punjab. Referring to the other two states, I wrote: “In Goa and Manipur, […]

 P Chidambaram

India is failing the test on J-K

India is failing the test on J-K

There was no animosity between the stone-pelting youth of Kashmir Valley and Thirumani’s family. His death was, what is heartlessly called, collateral damage.

Mr Ram Madhav is the pointsman of the RSS and the BJP-led Central government for India’s foreign relations and Jammu & Kashmir. (Is there an irony in that?) On the government’s J&K policy, he once said: “The government will stand firm, eruption or no eruption.” Mr Madhav is safe and secure at his residence and […]

 P Chidambaram

State election, nation-wide effect

State election, nation-wide effect

Mr Siddaramaiah must prove that his decision to contest from two seats did not prevent him from campaigning vigorously for the maximum number of Congress candidates. Above all, he must keep the focus on 2 Reddys + 1 Yeddy — a slogan gifted by Mr Modi!

Thanks to the media, ‘Karnataka goes to polls’ sounds or reads like ‘India goes to war’. Characteristically, Mr Narendra Modi will address 15 rallies in five days. No Prime Minister before has pushed himself/herself to the frontline of election battles in states as Mr Modi has done. It is the strategy of a high-stakes gambler. […]

 P Chidambaram

Southern flames may scald the nation

Southern flames may scald the nation

Post-1991, every state could take advantage of a more open economy, less control and state-specific strategies. States that were once regarded as having low potential now claim to have achieved high growth rates.

The Constitution of India obliges the President (i.e. the central government) to appoint, every five years, a Finance Commission (Article 280). Its foremost duty is “to make recommendations to the President as to the distribution between the Union and the states of the net proceeds of taxes which are to be… divided between them… and […]

 P Chidambaram

Change begins with words and ideas

Change begins with words and ideas

Measuring growth is a problem. It is a bigger problem if you change the rules in the middle of the game.

GDP is the gross domestic product. Keeping aside the nuances, it is the gross value of the country’s output of goods and services in a financial year. The output is valued in current prices as well as in constant prices (the latter are prices adjusted for inflation). In order to value the output at constant […]