Interview

“No city habitable unless it attracts investment and creates jobs”

Most of our big cities were built during the British era. They were meant to accommodate a certain size of population and last for a certain period. However, due to rapid urbanisation, these cities have become overcrowded with an unbearable pressure on civic amenities including water and sanitation. In an interaction with Governance Now, Misra talks about urban planning challenges while working

Poetry and diplomacy combine ambiguity and brevity: Diplomat Abhay Kumar

Abhay Kumar is a poet and a diplomat, a 2003 batch officer of the Indian Foreign Service, now serving as India’s deputy chief of mission in Brazil. He edited 100 Great Indian Poems, an anthology that was published in February and is being translated into Portuguese. He is also known for the Earth Anthem, which he penned in 2008. It was set to music in 2013 and recorded in eight langua

Administration of justice should be in public: Upendra Baxi

The supreme court and the question of judicial reforms are much in debate these days. You have recently commented, “Any reform of the system will have to come from within the court itself.” In that context, how do you view the move of the four senior Justices to go public?  Yes, but they all also said that they respect the office of the chief justice

Yoga is the way ahead: Dr HR Nagendra

Popularly known as prime minister Narendra Modi’s yoga therapist, Dr HR Nagendra was awarded the Padma Shri in 2016. He has a doctorate in mechanical engineering from IISc, Bangalore. A former NASA scientist, he now heads several central government committees on yoga education and development. Dr Nagendra talks about the recent study done under the initiative of the ministry of AYUSH

My musical journey has been really beautiful: Harshdeep Kaur

Harshdeep Kaur is a playback singer better known for her Sufi renditions. She sings Hindi as well as Punjabi. She sang ‘Ik Onkar’ in Rang De Basanti apart from several other soulful songs. Her track ‘R.I.P.’ composed by AR Rahman was part of Oscar-winner Danny Boyle’s film 127 Hours. Apart from Rahman, she has also worked with pathbreaking musicians like Pritam

“We are becoming American digital colonies”

Data is the new oil; and it needs to be protected. In an interaction with Governance Now, Lionel Baraban, CEO of Famoco, talks about how the French tech firm is developing secure business devices to safeguard data against going to other countries. What are the major roles of Famoco? Our major job is to validate digital transactions. Peop

"We will be involving community volunteers to effectively police the park"

The work on Sunder Nursery, a lush green refuge from urban chaos in central Delhi, started in 2007, when the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) undertook a conservation and renewal project. The 90-acre complex houses 15 monuments (out of which six date back to the 16th centur

"The farm crisis was building up from 2013"

How did the agriculture sector go into crisis? There was distress for quite some time. The situation improved from 2004 to 2011. Since 2011 conditions have been bad for farmers. Some kind of stress was building up; still, it was not a crisis-like situation. But when this government took over, a series of events happened and the situation worsened rapidly. We are seeing t

Obscenity in the name of Bhojpuri should be categorised as adult and sidelined: Sharda Sinha

In the early 1970s, during a talent hunt show organised by Gramophone Company of India, legendary singer Begum Akhtar gave a pat on the back to a young contestant.“Riyaz karo, bahot aage jaogi,” she told the girl. The same girl went on to become a highly acclaimed and popular folk singer who is fondly called Bihar Kokila: Sharda Sinha. She has been a recipient of Padma Bhushan (

Automation will not impact India negatively: NSDC head

Manish Kumar, a 1991 batch IAS officer, heads National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), and thus is driving the skill development mission of the Modi government. Earlier, he was the country coordinator and senior institution development economist, water & sanitation program (WSP), water global practice, at the World Bank. He has also held leadership positions with the government of

Modiji is way ahead in every respect, says Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani

In the post-Modi phase of Gujarat, Vijay Rupani is the first BJP leader to lead the party in assembly elections and seek a fresh mandate. The results in December were rather underwhelming as the BJP managed to win only 99 seats, down from 115, in the 182-member house. Yet, the BJP can take solace from the fact that it succeeded in countering anti-incumbency after more than two decades of

There has been a 25 percent jump in highway construction: Mansukh L Mandaviya

Union minister Mansukh L Mandaviya, 45, is among the younger politicians to have made it to the cabinet. He is in charge of road transport and highways, shipping, chemicals and fertilisers. In a freewheeling interview with Pankaj Kumar, he speaks on the budget and the state of the economy. In the last four years, there has been considerable development of road in

We want India to upgrade our military facility: Ethiopian envoy

Ethiopia is being energetically wooed by both India and China as it is a major player in Africa. The Ethiopian ambassador to India, Asfaw Dingamo Kame, spoke to Shankar Kumar about the ongoing defence cooperation between the two countries and shared his views on the clamour for reforms in the United Nations. He also shed light on the fast-paced developments in Zimbabwe.

Committed to doubling farmers’ income: Krishna Raj

 There were several announcements for farmers and the farm sector in the union budget 2018. Which among them would be most important in realising the target of doubling the farmers’ income by 2022? The government under the leadership of prime minister Narendra Modi is committed towards doubling the farmers’ income by 2022. The finance minister has ann

‘Do you think janata will rise and tell the CJI how to run the court?’

You have remarked that the four judges who raised serious questions about the administrative functioning of the supreme court should be impeached. What made you ask for such an extreme action? When I said that the four judges should be impeached, my opinion was based completely on judicial discipline. The damage they have caused to the functioning of the judiciar

“Let the five senior judges decide allocation of cases”

Four senior judges of the supreme court have publicly made serious allegations against the chief justice of India. Will it have wider impact on judicial discipline? I think so. I think the CJI will have to take note of it and rectify the mistakes he was making. Will it not set a wrong precedent? What if judges in high courts or lower courts

How Bhutan is enuring food security

When Bhupen Gurung from the Royal University of Bhutan told the audience at the TERI School of Advanced Studies, New Delhi, about dropping levels of poverty in Bhutan, many public policy academicians were left intrigued. Coming from the ‘Land of Happiness’ (Bhutan ranked 97 among 155 countries in the UN list of happy nations in 2017), Gurung attributed the success to interventio

Virtual ID is a good beginning; much more remains to be done

The UIDAI has introduced two measures to strengthen the security of Aadhaar: a 16-digit virtual ID (VID) in place of Aadhaar number for authentication, and a ‘limited KYC’ feature in which agencies (other than those provided by the law) will receive a VID and not Aadhaar number of the user. The move came after yet another expose of an unauthorised access to Aadha

Amaravati: Some lessons from Singapore

Farmers from villages of Amaravati are visiting Singapore for an on-the-ground study of developmental programmes there. They have an opportunity to see how land bought from them by the Andhra Pradesh government will be used for the development of the upcoming state capital, Amaravati, and also how they can invest the wealth they have acquired after parting with their land. Farmers who hande

‘There’s visible engagement with China, but with India, the engagement is not as visible’

Under president Yameen Gayoom, the Maldives has closed ranks with Beijing on a free trade agreement and the belt and road initiative. Recently, it suspended opposition councillors who met Indian ambassador Akhilesh Mishra in Male. The signals are that Maldives is neither comfortable with India, nor does it care for New Delhi’s interests in the Indian ocean region. In an interview with

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