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Does political reservation for women improve programme delivery?

This column outlines results of a study that assesses the impact of women leaders on corruption and other aspects of the quality of delivery of MNREGA. It argues that administrative experience, traini...

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Indian economy: High performer or Potemkin village?

The recent schizophrenic commentary on the health of the Indian economy raises questions on the true state: Is India doing really well or are we just seeing an impressive facade? In this post, Amartya...

  • Perspectives

Food subsidy – PDS, cash, or both?

Should food subsidies – currently availed in the form of subsidised cereals – be given out in the form of cash instead? In this post, Krishna and Agrawal contend that rather than asking this binar...

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He is a criminal but he is our criminal: Criminally-accused politicians in India

The recent increase in the number of criminally-accused politicians elected to state assemblies has caused much furore in India. Despite the potentially important consequences and the widely divergent...

  • IGC Research on India

Elucidating avenues for corruption: Micronutrient fortification strategies in India’s Midday Meals Programme

Globally, iron deficiency is a leading cause of anaemia, a condition that is particularly harmful during early childhood, causing fatigue and slower physical and cognitive development with potentially...

  • IGC Research on India

Why numbers matter

The delayed and partial release of data from the ‘Rapid Survey on Children’ by the Indian government has given rise to questions and speculation. In this article, former bureaucrat V. Ramani disc...

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PDS computerisation: What other states can learn from Kerala

Given the leakage in the Public Distribution System, Indian states are being encouraged to computerise their PDS. This column analyses Kerala’s experience with PDS computerisation and highlights me...

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Do ruling coalition-affiliated MLAs bring more development to their constituencies?

Despite the dismantling of the License Raj in the 1990s, interaction with government officials remains an important impediment to doing business in India. This column analyses the role of politics in...

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Citizens' trust in local politicians and implications for good governance

The new state of Telangana was carved out of Andhra Pradesh in June 2014, after a prolonged movement by the people of Telangana region for a separate state. Based on field experiments among citizens ...

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How effective are gram sabhas?

Village panchayats across India are mandated to organise local public meetings called gram sabhas several times a year, wherein villagers discuss issues such as local public good provision. This colu...

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14th Finance Commission: A trust-based approach towards local governments

The 14th Finance Commission has been hailed as ‘path-breaking’ for recommending larger fund allocations to state governments and giving them more autonomy in spending these funds. In this article...

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The Chhattisgarh experience and the National Food Security Act

Many of the reforms introduced under the National Food Security Act are modeled on PDS reforms implemented in Chhattisgarh. These reforms are widely believed to be responsible for the state’s succe...

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Maoist violence and MNREGA

The spate of Maoist attacks on security personnel in Chhattisgarh this week serves as a reminder that Moaist insurgency is the single biggest internal security threat faced by India. This column anal...

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Strategically greasing the wheels: The political economy of India’s rural employment guarantee scheme

Inefficient and capacity-constrained bureaucracies often pose a significant hurdle to the effective implementation of anti-poverty programmes in developing countries.

  • IGC Research on India

Should the less educated be barred from village council elections?

In December 2014, the state government of Rajasthan issued an executive order barring citizens with less than eight years of formal education from running for village council chief elections in all b...

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Most Popular Governance Posts

Caste dominance in rural India: Cause and effect

Rural India remains a caste-based society. This column explores why caste continues to play such an important role and what the effects are. It argues that trade and agricultural productivity suffer, ...

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Charting a course for the Indian economy

Karthik Muralidharan (Associate Professor of Economics, University of California, San Diego) speaks with Arvind Subramanian (Chief Economic Adviser, Government of India) on a broad set of issues rang...

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Rural development programmes: Implementation challenges and solutions

With a majority of the population living in rural areas in India, rural development is key to the development of the country. Based on his experience of working closely with the district administratio...

  • Perspectives