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Writing On The Wall
Opinion  /  Published 16.07.19

Another Subramanian and a new team

I wrote on New Year’s Day about Arvind Subramanian — the chief economic adviser who would barge into Arun Jaitley’s room and shower him with bright policy ideas, only to be politely listened to ...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 02.09.19

India's unhealthy banking sector

The last two governors of the Reserve Bank of India were given an unceremonious farewell by the government in Delhi. Both suffered the kick with admirable fortitude. Raghuram Rajan, who was not given ...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 18.06.19

Economists' tips for the Modi government

So is the economists’ model. They want the book to be read by those who find economics boring. So equations, tables and graphs are largely dispensed with. Every chapter is preceded by a short list o...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 05.02.19

Brexit: How to fail in style

Theresa May looks good. She does not have much competition amongst politicians, if we leave out Kashmiris, who cannot help looking good. But if one has to watch leaders on television, most options are...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 04.12.18

What Raghuram Rajan did not say

Raghuram Rajan’s departure from Mint Street was conspicuously unceremonious. He announced his decision to leave in a letter to the Reserve Bank of India’s staff. There he said that when he took ov...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 06.01.20

GDP fall smooth as waterfall

The graph is smooth like a waterfall: in the quarters beginning with April 2018, the year-on-year growth in gross domestic product at constant prices has been 8.1, 8.0, 7.0, 6.6, 5.8, 5.0 and 4.5 per ...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 05.03.19

Universal basic income is hardly a new idea

Last September I cited Piketty and Chancel’s figures showing the shocking rise of economic inequality in India, and suggested that the most effective way of dealing with its consequences would be to...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 19.02.19

Planning, modernised. Action awaited

Fed up with the shrill sermons of its deputy chairman, which he suffered as chief minister of Gujarat, the prime minister had said that he would abolish the Planning Commission. He kept his promise. B...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 21.05.19

In democracies, morality is irrelevant

Heads of state are normally elected to administer governments. But American presidents are special: they often combine administration with entertainment. Rulers in other systems would be embarrassed i...
By Ashok V. Desai in

Opinion  /  Published 02.07.19

Wanted: People who ask intelligent questions

Sam Asher of Oxford University and Paul Novosad of Dartmouth College have been studying the impact of infrastructure development, principally roads, in India. They used the brightness of electric ligh...
By Ashok V. Desai in


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