Interview

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

“DBT is needed to implement plans for TB elimination”

Close to 1,400 lives are lost to tuberculosis every day in India. The government has set itself the target of making India TB-free by 2025, under ‘National Strategic Plan for Tuberculosis Elimination 2017-25’. This would involve providing not just medicine to the needy, but also money so that they can buy nutritional food – a must in the treatment. The health ministry now

How one building gets pure air right in the middle of Delhi

Walking along the row of multistory buildings swathed in a haze of pollution at the Nehru Place business hub in South Delhi, when you come across what looks like a forest, you are just outside India’s first office complex which has air as fresh as in Gulmarg or Davos. Paharpur Business Centre (PBC), an office complex, is the brainchild of Kamal Meattle, a scientist-turned-businessman.

Five years after Nirbhaya, have things changed?

Far away in the other world, she must be weeping seeing the flames of fire she lit for justice slowly fading. On December 16, 2012, the 23-year-old Delhi woman, better known as Nirbhaya now, was brutally raped. She eventually succumbed to her injuries, but not before triggering a storm acorss the country on women’s safety. Have things really changed five years later?

Five years after Nirbhaya: A lot needs to be done

Have things changed five years after the Nirbhaya incident? I see Delhi as the capital of protest, not just capital of rape as it is often painted. In terms of legislation, in 2013 one-stop-centres were set up after the landmark report of Justice Verma Committee and Justice Usha Mehra Commission. There was amendment in the Criminal Law Act in 2013. The Sexual Harassment

“IT/ICT will be a significant game changer in education”

Ending an extended period of stagnation, public sector enterprise Educational Consultants of India Limited (EdCIL) doubled its turnover in 2015-16 and has maintained it for 2016-17. In conversation with Praggya Guptaa, EdCIL’s CMD Diptiman Das talks about the PSUs future plans and the potential of educational market in India. Bill Gates recently expressed

“We want India to support us on the security front also”

Close on the heels of the new US policy towards Afghanistan, India gave a new meaning to its strategy towards the country when it took the Chabahar route to supply wheat to the insurgency-hit landlocked nation. In conversation with Shankar Kumar, Afghanistan ambassador Shaida Mohammad Abdali talks about these developments and praises India’s effort for peace in the region. He also sub

“Pollution kills more people than infectious diseases and crimes”

At a time (Mid-November) when the national capital was engulfed in thick smog, public health experts from Australia, United Kingdom, Canada and other parts of the globe were in Delhi to attend the annual meeting of the Pacific Basin Consortium for Health and Environment. The meeting was held in India for the first time in 17 years. Scientists, researchers and policymakers thought it was the

"The only fallback was SMEs, but policies have choked them.”

A slowdown in the Indian economy and jobless growth have made the future seem bleak for many young Indians. Pronab Sen, country director of the International Growth Centre’s central team for India, speaks to Governance Now about what led to this pass and gives his prognosis. Sen has served as the first chief statistician of India, served as the functional and technical head of the nat

How Thomson Reuters can help in cracking down on black money

Post-demonetisation, there has been a crackdown on shell companies, a way to convert black money into white. Recently, prime minister Narendra Modi said that shell companies would all be eliminated in five years. Pradeep Lankapalli, who heads information and data analytics firm Thomson Reuters, however, believes we might not have to wait so long. In conversation with Governance Now, he talk

Ganga should have water to remain clean: DG, National Mission for Clean Ganga

In a conversation with Governance Now, UP Singh explains why the holy river cannot be cleansed in one stroke or by a single scheme. He also talks about how Ganga is different from other rivers across the globe and therefore needs a different mechanism to purify it again. When would we get to see a clean Ganga? Cleaning Ganga is not a one-time, but

Drop in revenue is a temporary phase: RS Sharma, chairman, TRAI

There is no drop in revenue but a dip in the growth rate of the revenue from telecom services because of reduction in tariff by telecom service providers due to competition. In an interview with Governance Now, TRAI head RS Sharma explains how the revenues will pick up soon. Countering the argument that the telecom industry is becoming an oligopoly market with the concentration of power in

Non-violence is the right approach: Lobsang Sangay, regent, Tibetan govt in exile

As the regent of the Tibetan government in exile, Lobsang Sangay is campaigning hard for its autonomy. He is bitter about the Chinese government’s attitude. In a freewheeling interview with Shankar Kumar, which took place a few days before the China Communist Party’s 19th Congress in Beijing, the Tibetan leader talks about world peace, Doklam, OBOR, Rohingyas and other issues. E

Hindi’s narrow readership is a concern: Nikhil Sachan

Nikhil Sachan is one of the most promising names among contemporary Hindi writers. His first book, Namak Swadanusar, a collection of short stories published in 2013, was praised widely in literary circles. It also made it to BBC Hindi’s top 10 books of the year. Born in Kanpur, he studied engineering from IIT BHU and completed a management course from IIM Kozhikode. After another anth

Senior railway officer Achal Khare on the bullet train roadmap

Achal Khare, MD, National High Speed Rail Corporation, is a man with big responsibility – of realising India’s dream of running a bullet train. In conversation with Vishwas Dass, Khare lists various challenges before the NHSRCL – the executing agency of the Ahmedabad-Mumbai high speed rail (HSR) project – and

How to quench water-stressed Chennai’s thirst

For the past two years Chennai has been facing an acute water crisis. From desalination plants to recycling water, the city is doing everything to improve the situation. In an interview with Shivani Chaturvedi, Chennai water authority MD V Arun Roy explains the measures underway to tackle the perennial crisis. What are the government’s plans to improve the

Free music is questionable: Carnatic vocalist Sudha Ragunathan

Sudha Ragunathan is a renowned Carnatic vocalist and composer. She has performed across India and abroad. Her guru was Padma Bhushan ML Vasanthakumari, known by many as a musical genius and a doyenne of Carnatic music. Sudha’s most fascinating and memorable performance was Vande Mataram at the central house of parliament during the 50th Republic Day celebrations in 2000. She has also

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