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Exclusive Breastfeeding? Yes. Effective Breastfeeding? No. What to do?

Our hearts almost skipped a beat when we heard community health officer (CHO) Dr. Sandeep Kakuste’s success story with baby Pinki Lakhan Patil, who was born underweight in a brick kiln. Pinki weighed 1.7 kg at birth. As she was on exclusive breastfeed she could not have gained weight by any other method. However following the techniques of ‘Health Spoken Tutorials’ of IIT Bomb

Gujarat is key if India is to become $5 trillion economy

The Government of Gujarat had set up a task force committee in February 2022 under the chairmanship of Dr. Hasmukh Adhia, former union finance secretary, to work out a strategy for the state to contribute in making India a USD 5 trillion economy, as per the vision of the prime minister. In three months, the task force committee submitted its final report to chief minister Bhupendra Patel this w

Why is Lanka in flames: the making of a crisis

This time it was not Lord Hanuman, but the poor decision-making of the political leaders combined with several global economic factors that set Sri Lanka in flames. A state of emergency was declared in Sri Lanka. This month, after the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka resigned from his post, the Sri Lankans went on a rampage across the nation and set the PM’s residence and the g

Chintan Shivir 2022: Will Congress regain its lost mojo?

The Congress is scheduled to hold a Chintan Shivir (meaning, ‘introspection camp’) from May 13th to 15th in Udaipur and it has identified six specific areas for introspection. These are 1. Political 2. Social Justice and Empowerment 3. Economy 4. Organization 5. Farmers and Agriculture and 6. Youth and Empowerment. Around eight to 10 leaders have been entrusted each of these six are

Role of civil society organisations in governance and CSR

India has the largest share of the deprived and the marginalized among the 1.3 billion-plus, out of the 7.9 billion-plus inhabitants of the world, who are said to be living without shelter or basic amenities required for human existence. Clearly, we need to introspect as to why despite being the fourth or sixth biggest economy in the world alongside our highly acclaimed democratic governance st

India and transition to green economy: Findings from the IPCC report

On April 4, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its 6th Assessment Report that discusses its findings to mitigate the impact of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The report brings to our notice that a global temperature rise of 1.5 degrees Celsius in the near future will constitute a “critical level”, leading to significant risk to humans and ecosystems and h

The Sri Lankan Crisis and Lessons for India

The Sri Lankan economy is undergoing a twin crisis: debt and foreign exchange crisis. The total current external debt for Sri Lanka stands at $45 billion. However, in February 2022, the country only had $2.31 in foreign exchange reserves. Due to low foreign exchange reserves, the country is unable to pay for essential commodities and is hence enduring shortages of food, medicine, fertilizer, an

How HDFC-HDFC Bank merger is a win-win deal – for all

Merger as a corporate strategy involves two companies coming together to form a new legal entity under a common corporate name. Mega merger deals have always attracted considerable attention from all stakeholders including customers, employees, and investors. Never mind the scale and magnitude of merger, the prime objective of such an activity always revolves around these major areas: Greater a

Axis Bank-Citibank deal: What it means for stakeholders

Merger is a corporate strategy involving two companies to combine and form a new legal entity under a common corporate name. Merger deals between industry rivals have always attracted considerable attention from all stakeholders including customers, employees, and investors. Stakeholders place special emphasis on issues like expected synergies, economies of scale, increased market share and the

How did a joke on Jada turn into a Will-Chris event?

I remember in 2013, the highlight of the Oscar ceremony was the accidental fall of Jennifer Lawrence, as she was climbing the steps to receive an award. What was remarkable was the way she graciously made fun of herself while collecting the award. Her conduct was humbling and is still remembered fondly. Coming to 2022, this incident seems to be a blip compared to the Will Smith-Chris Rock contr

Is a 4-day working week feasible in India?

In the early days of human civilization, man had to work all seven days a week as a hunter-gatherer in order to meet his basic needs. As time went on, man developed tools and machinery and with the rise in capitalism came the age of the industrial revolution. During this time, factory workers were required to work for about 16 hours a day, six days a week. A couple of centuries and a good deal

CSR and sanitation: Good beginning, challenges ahead

The Swachh Bharath Abhiyan was launched in 2014 to eradicate open defecation (OD) by 2019 and make India open defecation free (ODF). The program focused on providing subsidies for the construction of toilets to remove the financial constraint faced by the households as well behaviour change communication (BCC) campaigns to help people recognize the harms of OD. One of the less di

State vs Government

Raphael Lemkin`s discourse on genocide followed by a UN debate on issues like Nazi offences against Jews, the sordid tale of Bosnian Serb aggression against Bosnian Moslems, and details of the Jewish Holocaust had exposed me to such crimes against humanity in my student days. Incidentally, when I joined the Indian Police Service and was allotted the Bihar cadre, I was faced with commonplace cri

To improve India’s happiness ranking, learn from the states

The World Happiness Report 2022 ranks India at 136th position, or tenth from the bottom of the list. Among 146 countries, Finland tops the list, followed by Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Luxemburg, according to the report released recently. India’s performance created a stir as it was widely criticized by the opposition parties. They attributed the low ranking to grow

What the PEW report tells us about gender attitudes in India

The PEW Research Center released a report on the Indian attitudes towards gender roles, at home and at society at large. The findings are based on a survey of around 30,000 people conducted in 2019-2020 or pre-COVID-19 period. [Read the report here: https://www.pewforum.org/2022/

One word that influenced Verdict 2022 most: ‘Labharthi’

After the results of the five state assembly elections were announced on March 10th, there has been so much analysis from several perspectives. But if it is to be summed up in just one word, it is ‘Labharthi’, either actual or latent, who have called the shots. ‘Labharthi’ is a Hindi word, which means ‘beneficiaries’ of welfare schemes of the government.

How Russia-Ukraine crisis will hurt your pockets

The tensions between Ukraine and Russia are seeing new heights. All the media outlets, leaders of powerful countries, social media users and citizens all over the world are witnessing, and talking about, the historic and horrific progression of Russia’s invasion on Ukraine and the subsequent military events and evacuation stories that have taken place in the most recent days. Even though

Climate change and women: What India needs to do

India is likely to be the most impacted country by the effects of climate change and the most impacted large country.The IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report on Climate Change (2021) outlines speed of environmental damage and global warming is far starker than visualized earlier, thus calling for immediate and transformative actions that have wide ramifications for the female population in Indi

Dating the electorate, Valentine’s Day for political parties on March 10

A few days to go, when results of elections to five state assemblies will be announced on March 10th. At stake are 689 assembly seats, in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Goa and Manipur. BJP has the most at stake, in retaining 405 seats it won in last 2017 elections, while Congress won 140 seats last time. AAP which won 20 seats in Punjab faces a moment of reckoning: can it taste power beyo

Russia-Ukraine crisis: How the next 24 hours are crucial

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis, which has resurfaced the dirty WW (world war) word to the horror of a world just trying to come out of a crippling pandemic Covid-19, has reached a stage where next 24 hours are critical in many aspects and will shape the contours of international relations.   First, the encouraging news. Ukraine and Russia have agreed to talks at a venue n

Visionary Talk: Arvind Sawant, Member of Parliament with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now


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