Interview

"Mobile platform will widen access, reach of services in rural areas"

Dr Rajendra Kumar is a 1992 batch IAS officer of the Tamil Nadu cadre. He holds a BTech from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, and a PhD from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He has played a key role in creating a framework on mobile governance. In his current position as joint secretary, e-governance, department of electronics and information technology (DeitY), he is ove

`Govt not in position to give more money to sick PSUs`

Nitish Sengupta, a renowned economist and a career bureaucrat, is at present chairperson of the Board for Reconstruction of Public Sector Enterprises (BRPSE), which is mandated to examine cases of sick central public sector enterprises (PSEs) and recommend their revival or closure. The board is also mandated to monitor emerging sickness in PSEs. Out of 248 central PSEs, 67 have been ref

`Women`s reservation bill should have quota for Dalits, minorities`

At 40, Arun Kumar Kori wears more than one hat. She is the only woman, and a dalit to boot, in the Akhilesh Yadav cabinet in Uttar Pradesh and runs the women welfare department — an important portfolio at a time when crime against women is such a raging national issue. She also has the culture portfolio. Having joined the Samajwadi Party at a young age, Kori contested the L

Let judiciary have oversight on CBI, says ex-director

The supreme court hauled the central bureau of investigation (CBI) over coals for letting the political executive dictate its probe report on the coal block allocation scam calling the investigating agency a “caged parrot” singing its master’s tune. “It pains us to see the CBI director accept that regular interaction between investigating officer and ministry officia

Black money: A white man`s burden

Raymond W Baker is a despised figure in the tax haven countries. He is the founder and director of Washington-based think tank Global Financial Integrity (GFI), which has brought out many reports on the illicit money that flows from countries and is parked in 60-odd tax haven countries. His reports have created buzz around the world.    Author of ‘Capita

Suspend banks` branch licenses: Bahal

After unearthing leading private banks of the country, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank involvement in black money, Cobrapost editor Aniruddha Bahal did not sit idle. He went a step forward, this time investigating public sectors banks. What came out was shocking: many public sector banks were involved in money laundering, according to his sting operations. Edited ex

"India doesn`t have robust oil and gas infrastructure"

Blake C Clayton, an energy expert with the New York-based think tank Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), says that the challenge before India is not providing cheap energy to the wealthiest but to those living in rural areas. Clayton, who has a doctorate from Oxford University, says that if India is to become self-sufficient in the energy sector, it has to embrace new technologies.

"Unless we use data, there is no open government"

Subhash Bhatnagar, a renowned authority on e-governance, has worked with the World Bank in Washington DC (2000 to 2006) as a consultant advisor on e-Government. Currently he is an honorary adjunct professor at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A), where he has worked for most part of his career. He leads the team which oversees the department of electronics and

"Build an economy, financial inclusion will happen on its own"

On a chilly January afternoon in his spanking new central office in Gurgaon, SL Bansal, chairman of Oriental Bank of Commerce, shares his ideas on financial inclusion in the times of massive social and economic changes and the challenges these changes pose for India, its banks and its economy. Edited excerpts from an interview with          &nbs

‘Some elements in NCPCR are opposed to the RTE Act’

After working in the ministry of human resource and development (HRD) for nine years and more than 20 years of work in the education sector, Dhir Jhingran was appointed as the national coordinator of right to education (RTE) Act at the national commission for protection of child rights (NCPCR). An IAS of 1986-batch Assam cadre, Jhingran resigned from the post within ju

"Kerala is the most progressive state in the geospatial domain"

C Jayashankar Prasad, director, Kerala State IT Mission (KSITM), in conversation with Shivangi Narayan, talks about cyber security in Kerala, the ways to make it better and the ultimate dream of the state to become a digital society. What is CERT-K and what kind of powers does it have to tackle cyber security?  CER

“The day FI becomes their need, things will change”

MV Tanksale, CMD, Central Bank of India, tells Governance Now that today the villagers feel that it is not their own need but the government’s need that they should be given Aadhaar numbers, bank accounts and direct transfers. But things are changing and good things have happened in financial inclusion in the last one year, since we met him for our first ‘Bank India Bank’ spec

“The BC model of financial inclusion will yield surpluses within five years”

Union Bank of India believes that banks have to create the “need” for the rural poor to engage with banks. It is this belief that led to Ernakulam in Kerala—where UBI is the lead bank—to become the first “meanigful financial inclusion district” of the country, reveals D Sarkar, CMD. Edited excerpts of an email interview with Governance Now:

“NCPCR not serious in monitoring RTE act”

After working in the ministry of human resource and development (HRD) for nine years and more than 20 years of work in the education sector, Dhir Jhingran was appointed as the national coordinator of right to education (RTE) act at the national commission for protection of child rights (NCPCR). An IAS of 1986-batch Assam cadre, Jhingran resigned from the post within just six months of a

“Random trials are undemocratic in nature”

For the development economists, the randomised control trials (RCTs) are the latest fad. Imported from medical research into the field of economics, many economists including Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo have been heavily using RCTs into their work. Banerjee and Duflo’s book, ‘Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty’, highlighted the re

“56 percent of Indians want their services on digital domain”

In conversation with Shivangi Narayan, Brian Moran, global managing director of Accenture’s Public Service Operations & Management Industry, talks about moving services to the digital domain thus improving the productivity and reducing cost of services. Could you elaborate more on your research which says that if we increase the efficiency of delivery

“Narendra Modi is not a threat to us”

The Congress, as the leading party of the ruling coalition, is completing two terms in power. But 2014 is going to be the toughest task it has faced in recent decades. Reasons are many: a series of corruption scandals, popular middle-class movements against it, the rise of Narendra Modi and finally the apparent indecision over Rahul Gandhi’s role. Veteran leader Digvijay Singh, who is, am

Get more bang for development bucks

India has no dearth of government schemes and programmes aimed at delivering development in general and welfare to the needy. But have they delivered development and made a difference in the life of a poor family? More importantly, do we raise these questions to begin with – questions of evaluating the impact of development/welfare initiatives? Howard White, an economist an

“India will make cheap lifesaving drugs available to developing nations”

The Intellectual Property Appellate Board of India on March 4 rejected the German firm Bayer AG`s appeal of a ruling last year that allowed Hyderabad-based Natco Pharma to produce a cheaper generic version of Bayer’s kidney and liver cancer drug Nexavar. This would result in a treatment that more people would be able to afford. Our cover story for September 1-15, 2012 issue went behi

“Compulsory licence would be a trendsetter”

The Intellectual Property Appellate Board of India on March 4 rejected the German firm Bayer AG`s appeal of a ruling last year that allowed Hyderabad-based Natco Pharma to produce a cheaper generic version of Bayer’s kidney and liver cancer drug Nexavar. This would result in a treatment that more people would be able to afford. Our cover story for September 1-15, 2012 issue went behi

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