Bibek Debroy

Articles By Bibek Debroy

110 Articles

Indian Railways reforms: A single cadre for Railways management

The newly minted Indian Railways Management service can break down the silos that plague the Railways. But this will not be without its challenges

Railway reforms, Indian Railways, IRPS, Debroy Committee, UPSC, Railway Board, Group of Secretaries News

Indian Railways departmentalism worse than 1905! Reforms to cut Railway Board, merge cadre the right step

Departmentalism plagued the management of the railways, the railway board reform addresses this

Indian Railways News

Salt bureaucracy pounding salt

With other departments/bodies having assumed most of their functions, the most that Salt departments can do today is to exploit the land they own.

Opinion News

Justice delayed: Are fast-track courts fast enough?

In 2017, Fast-track courts in only six states managed to dispose 50% of their cases within a year.

Opinion News

Swachh Bharat shows how to nudge the right way

Setting up a ‘behaviour insight team’ in the govt, to help different ministries incorporate psychological and cognitive dimensions in public policy, may be useful.

swachh bharat mission, News

Junk Boilers Act and relook Seventh Schedule

With perceptions about inspections by private companies having changed, the Indian Boilers Act, 1923, and the entire Seventh Schedule, needs a relook.

Irrespective of whether boilers needed oil and grease or not, inspectors did. Since 2014, there have been more relaxations, with self-certification pushed (Representational Image) News

Restructuring of centrally sponsored schemes cannot be done without consultation with states

A CSS restructuring/rationalisation debate requires relook at the Seventh Schedule, and cannot be done without consultation with states at an appropriate forum.

The difference between a CS and a CSS is that for a central sector scheme, all expenditure is borne by the Union government News

Giving legal rights to water bodies a great leap forward

Without contesting pollution in Ganga and Yamuna, one should be sceptical of lists and rankings, both because of data problems (there are good data only for OECD) and because of the way numbers are used

Ill-being of rivers is primarily due to raw sewage and industrial waste. (Representational image) News

India’s economic journey: A fountain-pen story

Though fountain-pens weren’t branded, the ink certainly was. It was, and had to be, Sulekha. Sulekha Works, started initially in 1934 in what is now Bangladesh, was identified with self-reliance and the Independence movemen

fountain pen, sulekha ink, fountain pen ink, fountain pen inventor, fountain pen price, fountain pen india, fountain pen parker, fountain pen writing, fountain pen nib News

GDP revisions and what has been said on growth numbers

Revising GDP series isn't unusual. Nor should one ascribe a malignant motive to a continuous and evolving process.

Opinion News

Arvind Subramanian’s attempt to estimate GDP instead of explaining it through cross-country regression fraught with problems

As the dependent variable, he had heights of actresses on the Bengali stage in the 19th century, with a clear perceptible decline in heights towards the end of the century. Among

Opinion News

GDP estimation: System not perfect, but it’s better than one based on annual surveys

The working paper mentions the National Statistical Commission (NSC). The seeds of NSC were sown by the C. Rangarajan Commission in September 2001. Many people may have forgotten what this report said.

What happened in January 2015 was more than a base year change from 2004-05 to 2011-12. There was a switch from GDP at factor cost to GVA News

Understanding India’s middle-income trap

Even if one uses this relative notion, the case of a middle income trap existing is not proven. Does that mean there are no issues with the Indian economy? Certainly not

For the sake of sheer perversity, just before 1991 reforms, there were roughly 20 rupees to a dollar and right now, there are roughly 70 rupees to a dollar. News

Why formalised training and placement for plumbers is a must

An ordinary graduate earns Rs 10,000 per month. A plumber earns Rs 20,000 per month. There is the broader issue of whether the education system delivers marketable skills.

Skilled training for plumbers is a must (Illustration: rohnit phore/ File) News

Hairy politics: There is discrimination between armed forces and police when it comes to moustache allowances

Like discrimination between kings in playing card decks, there is discrimination between armed forces and police when it comes to moustache allowances.

Opinion News

How should India track its time; Office hours in Northeast need to be changed

The existing IST is said to be negatively impacting the lives of the northeastern people as the sun rises and sets much earlier than the official working hours.

clock, indian standart time, ist, nort east, north east india, meghalaya News

At Kumbh Mela, sadhus and akhadas galore, but how many religious mendicants are there?

State-wise, with an aggregate of 81,244, West Bengal leads by a considerable margin, followed by UP. These numbers differ slightly from figures given in the ministry of social justice and empowerment’s handbook on social we

Sadhus, Sangam, Makar Sankranti, Kumbh Mela, Prayagraj. financial express, editorial News

Swachh Bharat: 500,000 volunteers have changed lakhs of villages

On both households’ usage of toilets and open defecation free villages, there is some slippage but not as much as one might have thought

Swachh Bharat numbers, Swachh Bharat Mission, Annual Rural Sanitation Survey, IHHL, Swachhagraha Preraks, ASHA worker, Anganwadi worker News

In imagining Make-in-India, focus has strongly been on scaling up and lowering cost

Successful teaching is individual-specific and a successful teacher adapts according to capacity and receptivity of recipient.

education, education sector, education industry News

Courts must punish false evidence: Bibek Debroy, Chairman, EAC to the PM

In the second, the Court tells us perjury has assumed alarming propositions.

Opinion News

Public libraries in this day and age; no one has an answer to what they are supposed to do, says Bibek Debroy

In this day and age, we need to think what a public library is supposed to do, its role. The 1954 legislation on public libraries is about the delivery of books and newspapers. Several states have legislation on public librar

Opinion News

Section 377, and its mirror-law in England reduced the punishment for gay sex to life imprisonment, from death penalty

When we look at a piece of legislation, we often See it as it is interpreted today, not as it was when enacted. We also assume that the stated objective is the real one.

section 377, supreme court News

Sweet and sour: The bitter truth about honey production

Apiculture is still so informal that and unregulated that there are those who manufacture honey by mixing natural honey with sugar syrup

Opinion News

Bengaluru pet-lovers are upset at what BBMP has done – Who does not let the dogs out?

The bengaluru municipal authority produced a list of 64 approved breeds for apartments and thus also got into the choice and encouragement of certain breeds

Bengaluru residents, Bengaluru pet lovers, bengaluru municipal authority, mandatory registration of dogs, BBMP, Delhi Municipal Corporation Act News

LIMBS: The right legwork for efficient govt litigation

LIMBS stands for Legal Information Management and Briefing System, and is a ministry of law and justice initiative. The idea is to reduce government litigation—to make government litigation more efficient is a better statem

Opinion News

Employment numbers: The jobs debate and working ‘adults’

As of now, GERs are quite high for secondary and senior secondary, much less so for higher education. For secondary education, the threshold of 75% has been crossed, for senior secondary that of 50%. 

jobs, working adults, old employment, youth employment News

Legacy law: Junk the citizen’s arrest law

The second gives credit for this odd piece of legislation to Massachusetts. These days, there are databases to search legislation in many parts of the world. I couldn’t find any such legislation in either Louisiana or Massa

Legacy law, arrest law, Massachusetts, Section 268 of IPC, CrPC News
Income Tax Calculator, Budget 2019, How to Calculate Income Tax


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