Edits & Columns

As the bitter campaign ends, EC gets ‘average’ on its report card, says P Chidambaram

There has been an abundance of political parties, candidates, rallies and roadshows, money spent, abuses hurled, violence, failure of the vaunted EVMs and VVPATs, and clean chits by the Election Commission (EC).
Poling officials checking EVMs and VVPATs before leaving their polling booth at a distrubution centre ahead of the seventh and last phase of Lok Sabha polls in Kolkata (PTI Image) News

Some Bengaluru colleges are punishing girls for better performance

In Bengaluru’s reputed Christ Junior College, the science cut-off for boys and girls is 94.1% and 95.1, respectively, while in MES PU College, it is 92% and 95%! Similar cut-offs have been posted fo

Some Bengaluru colleges are punishing girls for better performance (Representational image) News

Explained: How banks have been transmitting rate cuts by RBI

Are we being unfair when we constantly fret over the slow transmission of interest rates by banks when the repo rate is cut? This has become a habit of late, one where there is a lot of concern raised

From January 2015 to June 2018, there were seven reductions in the repo rate, amounting to 200 bps, and banks' WALR changed by 205 bps during the period News

Don’t drag India into US-China trade war

India represents the rare bright spot in US foreign policy. With much difficulty, a years-long, bipartisan effort has greatly deepened ties.

For the US to be a stakeholder in India’s future, trading some short-term gains for more important long-term returns is implicitly required. (Representational image) News

The many facets of Sino-US trade dispute

While it is a forgone conclusion that both the US and China will be affected by tariffs, China will be more so. In the US, the load of tariffs will impact US importers and indirectly impact consumers

The bottom line is that Xi Jinping may have provoked the dispute, departing from the dictum of China “biding its time” before its time—a cumulative backlash to China’s actions in Taiwan and North-east Asia, and the South China Sea (Illustration: Rohnit phore) News

Why focus must shift towards reform agenda after May 23

A report by HSBC says that the period from 2004 to 2006 reported a spurt in total factor productivity and the capital stock, raising India’s potential growth. Strong global liquidity and growth too

The report points out that the growth in the capital stock is falling, reflected in the decline in investment rate. (Illustration: Shyam Kumar Prasad) News

Indian R&D is pumping iron, must make policy choices carefully

Within tech patent-applications, emerging tech such as AI, internet of things, cloud computing and cybersecurity have steadily increased their share from 38.3% in 2015 to 56.3% in 2017/18.

Within tech patent-applications, emerging tech such as AI, internet of things, cloud computing and cybersecurity have steadily increased their share from 38.3% in 2015 to 56.3% in 2017/18. (Representational image) News

Parties must act to curb crime in politics

Association for Democratic Reform’s (ADR’s) analysis of candidates’ self-sworn affidavits in the ongoing general polls show that, in 2019, 19% of the candidates analysed face criminal charges, a

The Election Commission of India has now made it mandatory for candidates with criminal cases to advertise these details in popular newspapers and TV channels. News

Why public schools must shore up English teaching

A survey by the Lok Foundation and Oxford University on English speakers in India finds correlations between proficiency and caste, class, and education.

The survey highlights that 12% of the respondents from urban areas could speak English as compared with 3% from rural areas. (Representative image) News

Demographic distress: Will India get older before it gets richer?

Data from the 4th National Family Health Survey (NFHS-4) 2015-16 for the survey period 2013-15 has signaled a monumental shift in modern Indian demographics.

As population growth moves past its peak, we need to be acutely aware that the population of our youth is on the decline. (Representational image) News

Getting rich by investing in art is so easy, just figure out what sells for peanuts today

Author and investment adviser William J Bernstein points out that much of the appreciation in art and other collectibles is really just a lesson in the magic of compounding.

Getting rich by investing in art is so easy, just figure out what sells for peanuts today News

Jet Airways crisis: A flight plan gone wrong

Jet, which billed itself as India’s oldest private airline and dominated Indian skies for two decades, turned out to be a disastrous, hollow organisation, taking things day-by-day on dwindling resou

Jet Airways was in debt in excess of Rs 8,500 crore to Indian banks (ILLUSTRATION: ROHNIT PHORE) News

Is the NBFC crisis imminent?

NBFCs’ capital adequacy ratio (CRAR) notched up from 22% in 2016-17 to 22.9% in 2017-18, but decreased from 27.5% in 2013-14.

NBFCs have been plagued with liquidity, maturity problems, but they have reportedly a high capital adequacy ratio News

World telecom day: Role of tech standards, and the need for interdisciplinary approach

The anniversary of the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is celebrated on May 17 as the World Telecommunicatio

The theme this year is ‘Bridging the Standardization Gap’. News

UPI vs plastic money: Banks don’t want to set up ATMs due to low rural card-usage

The government has reportedly pulled up banks for not putting in place enough point of sales (PoS) terminals for credit and debit cards. Against a target of 2 million machines—mobile and physical—

The government’s dissatisfaction over the small number of machines placed in rural areas is misplaced given the usage in rural India is very low. (Representational image) News

India’s energy investment particulars show the country is committed to climate change mitigation

The 4th World Energy Investment (WEI) report published by International Energy Agency (IEA) highlights that investment in India’s energy sector has grown the most in the last three years.

The credit goes to the government policies supporting solar PVs and wind energy. (Representative image) News

Lok Sabha elections 2019: The mystery behind the highest voter turnout

Increased voter turnout remains concentrated in BJP’s traditional bastions; these are also states where rural distress has been a key electoral issue.

The 2019 election is on track to achieve record voter turnout, but both theoretical and empirical studies have struggled to find causality between voter turnout and election outcomes. (Representational image) News

WhatsApp hack shows how supposedly secure messaging apps are vulnerable

The WhatsApp hack shows how supposedly secure messaging apps have a basic vulnerability.

The WhatsApp episode is likely to increase the backlash against NSO and the export license it has from the Israeli government to sell Pegasus. News

How to move on gold monetisation

Although banks engage in gold imports, metal loans and selling of gold coins, their clientèle in such businesses are not the target audience for the GMS, i.e. retail jewellery sellers/buyers.

Instead, jewellers with their wide presence across the country, better wherewithal in dealing in gold as well as trusted relationship with end-consumers can be cost-effectively roped into the GMS structure (Illustration: rohnit phore) News

Getting ready for e-commerce 2.0: Seeing a change in type of vehicles purchased to cater to growing sector

The number of intraregional and last-mile truck trips has increased, while the average length of haul has declined. Motor carriers must operate with faster turnaround times

Trucks manufactured for the e-commerce sector must now accommodate each shipment’s weight, dimensions, distance to destination, delivery requirements, special handling needs, and other direct-to-customer variables. (Representational image) News

Cleaning India’s rivers: Time to raise the game with better water quality data and transparency measures

Improving river water quality has been a political priority over the years. But what cannot be adequately measured, cannot be improved.

Conventionally, water quality is measured by collecting grab samples and testing them in laboratories. News

An apology for justice, where is this going to stop?

Supreme Court erred badly in insisting that Priyanka Sharma apologize for re-posting a meme; should have censured WB cops

Priyanka Sharma, West Bengal police, Mamata Banerjee morphed image, Supreme Court, Balakot strikes, lok sabha elections 2019, kolkata voilence News

Loan waivers won’t really help small borrowers

With the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) catering for bigger companies rather than micro enterprises the ministry of corporate affairs (MCA) is doing well to focus on finding solutions for very s

MCA secretary Srinivas Injeti’s point that the IBC does not provide any special dispensation for small borrowers and that the personal involvency chapter may need some amendments is well taken. News

Bt brinjal a wake-up call; unfounded anti-GM fears spawn dangerous subversion

Bt brinjal being illegally cultivated in the country—the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources has just confirmed this for a Haryana farmer’s crop—should hardly shock anyone.

In the Bt brinjal case, paranoia trumped scientific rationale, and it was the farmer that suffered. (Representational photo: IE) News
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