D-Sector for Development Community

   Friday, February 22, 2019
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Expert View
Views of domain experts and renowned commentators on diverse issues.

Dismantling mandis to benefit MNCs
By Devinder Sharma  | 28 Jan 2011

Not withstanding poor management, mandis have played a critical role in ensuring remunerative prices and timely purchase for the benefit of farmers and therefore, India needs improvement in mandi system, not its dismantlement as desired by industry bodies and Montek Singh Ahluwalia.

Decentralise India's food storage system
By J. George  | 26 Jan 2011

Indian policy makers should think beyond erecting huge silos at selected locations to overcome the limitation in proper food storage and delivery. To ensure food security to all, augmenting grain storage capacity in the villages is the best way forward.

Macro design behind micro-finance
By Sudhirendar Sharma  | 23 Jan 2011

Microfinance has emerged as a dubious construct of the financial markets to ensure high income on the otherwise useless capital. That the poor will be trapped in this treadmill of 'poverty capital' has always been part of the microfinance design.

Fasting without repentance?
By Devinder Sharma  | 23 Dec 2010

TDP leader Chandrababu Naidu's fast to demand higher compensation for rain-affected farmers is being seen as his pro-farmer stance. But can we forget the miseries his faulty agri-policies brought to the Andhra Pradesh farmers?

Nuclear bulldozer from Kaiga to Jaitapur
By Pandurang Hegde  | 15 Dec 2010

By agreeing to set up nuclear plant at Jaitapur, the government has shown its indifference towards massive public opposition and environmentalists' concerns for threat to rich bio-diversity of Western Ghats

Embankments related compensation to drain exchequer
By Dinesh Kumar Mishra  | 06 Dec 2010

Government of Nepal has asked the Government of India to compensate its citizens badly affected by embankments and other flood control measures taken on river Gandak. Will this not lead to a flood of demands for compensation by the victims of similar problems in other river basins like the Bagmati, the Kamala and the Kosi?

India needs a Seed Liability Bill
By Devinder Sharma  | 18 Nov 2010

The proposed Seed Bill 2010 fails to address the long standing demands of the Indian farmers and remains soft towards the seed companies. Only a seed liability bill can provide protection to the vulnerable farmers.

Don't expect much from G-20
By Devinder Sharma  | 13 Nov 2010

Though the economic policies of the industrialised world continue to widen economic disparities, International groups like G-20 have failed to correct the structural problems behind the global economic crisis.

Surrendering Indian agriculture before Obama
By Devinder Sharma  | 04 Nov 2010

Having failed to revive U.S. economy and facing rising opposition back home, President Obama is coming to India with the sole aim to demand drastic policy measures to help revive business of US agri-corps and retail giants.

Squeeze poor, extract profits
By Pandurang Hegde  | 26 Oct 2010

The microfinance companies in India have finally come under scanner for charging exorbitant rates of interest from poor villagers and using exploitative methods to recover small loans, forcing many poor to commit suicides.

Use soap, even if it pollutes water!
By Sudhirendar Sharma  | 15 Oct 2010

The handwashing campaign pushed by the international development agencies conveniently ignores the fact that contamination by soap will put additional stress on limited availability of clean drinking water and will leave poor more vulnerable to diseases.

Vulnerable wildlife
By Pandurang Hegde  | 07 Oct 2010

The current policies to protect wildlife have failed to achieve intended goals. Can we think beyond borrowed concepts of Protected Areas and empower local communities to take initiatives for wildlife protection?

Bad science joins paid science
By Devinder Sharma  | 27 Sep 2010

Entire India, more so its young scientists and students, is left embarrassed and ashamed after expose of ‘copy and paste’ job done by the heads of India’s top science academies to push GM food into India. While these academy heads continue to cling to their posts despite being exposed of disgraceful deeds, the incident only confirms the widespread corruption and incompetence in India’s academic and research institutions.

'Right' is right but what is left...
By Sudhirendar Sharma  | 24 Sep 2010

UN General Assembly in July 2010 adopted a resolution to recognize water as a fundamental human right, but does it make any difference to the nearly 900 million people without access to clean drinking water?

Gandak embankment breached again
By Dinesh Kumar Mishra  | 21 Sep 2010

Forty fourth breach of the Gandak embankment in the past 24 years once again proves futility of relying on embankments as effective flood control measures.

Bamboo for sustainability and growth
By Pandurang Hegde  | 18 Sep 2010

While we celebrate the International Bamboo Day, it is essential to recognize and propagate the multiple uses of Bamboo in providing livelihood security to poor, protecting land from degradation as well as in mitigating climate change.

Africa needs SAGRA, not AGRA
By Devinder Sharma  | 13 Sep 2010

Large agri-business has set its eyes on vast and unexplored market of Africa. The slogan of Second Green Revolution is their pass for a smooth entry. To avoid falling into the trap, Africa should first adopt environmentally sustainable agricultural practices and then create mechanisms to ensure an assured price and market to farmers.

Who will feed Uttar Pradesh?
By Devinder Sharma  | 08 Sep 2010

State governments are competing with each other to grab fertile lands of farmers and transfer these to industry. But with increasing population and decreasing arable land, feeding the people will become a huge challenge for states like Uttar Pradesh in the years to come.

Food storage or wastage?
By Pandurang Hegde  | 25 Aug 2010

To tackle food storage crisis in India, government should adopt two-pronged approach of encouraging large size foodgrain silos in states with surplus production and de-centralised foodgrain procurement and storage in other regions.

Weather aberrations may exacerbate hunger
By Devinder Sharma  | 20 Aug 2010

The devastation wrought by aberrant weather conditions in several parts of the world has posed a larger question about the implications climate change has for food security of a nation.

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Corruption Watch

The bad news is that corruption has not only sustained but has grown in size and stature in the country. With scams being a regular feature, seventy per cent respondents in a survey have rightfully opined that corruption has continued to increase in India. One in every two interviewed admit having paid a bribe for availing public services during last one year. Transparency International's latest survey reveals that the political parties top the chart for the most corrupt public institutions, followed by police force and legislatures. No wonder, India continues to make new records on the global corruption arena!

The shocking revelation is that the health and education sectors haven't remained untouched by this phenomenon. With 5th and 6th positions respectively for these sectors on the public perception chart on corruption, corruption has crept insidiously into these sectors of hope for the masses. With bureaucracy being fourth in the list of corrupt institutions in the country, corruption seems to have been non-formally institutionalized with little hope if public services would ever be effective in the country. With economic growth having literally institutionalized corruption, are we now expecting corrupt to be socially responsible - a different CSR.

Poor. Who?

Not giving 'aid' to India is one thing but calling it 'rich' is quite another. If one in three of the world's malnourished children live in India, what does average daily income of $3 indicate? It perhaps means that there is a relative decline in poverty - people are 'less poor' than what they used to be in the past. But having crossed the World Bank arbitrary threshold of $2 a day does not absolve the 'developed' countries of their obligation to part with 0.7 per cent of their Gross National Income in development aid. Should this three-decade old figure not be revised?  

An interesting debate in UK's House of Commons delved on future of development assistance by the British Government. While prioritizing limited resources has been a concern, there has been no denying the fact that development aid must be guided towards tangible gains over a short period of time to start with. There are difficult choices for elected governments to make - should they invest in long-term primary education or in short-term university scholarships? Which of these will bring gains and trigger long-term transformation in the society. As politicians continue to be divided on the matter, poverty persists!!   

Lead View
People, Partition and the Pain
By Rina Mukherji
15 Aug 2013

Dr Jayanti Basu's book analyzes the complex feelings of hatred and longing for the homeland that have contributed to shaping the personalities of a generation of people who were forced to ..
Book Shelf

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Spoiling Tibet

On Western Terrorism
Devinder Sharma
Carmen Miranda
Pandurang Hegde
Sudhirendar Sharma
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