‘Why only Tatas, why not give sops to dalit businessman?’

At a time when there are few dalit entrepreneurs, Hari Kishan Pippal has carved a niche in Agra. His journey from rags to riches is a story of discrimination, struggle, caste taunts and hardship. His companions were some public sector banks, which gave him loans to run the business. There was hardly any support from the government at a time when big businessmen like Tatas gets sops to set up fa

“Maya will be out of power”

Mayawati’s once all-powerful, favourite officer is now her bête noire. PL Punia, the Congress MP from Barabanki and the chairman of national commission for scheduled castes (NCSC), served the BSP supremo as her principal secretary over her three tenures as the chief minister. An accused in the Taj Heritage Corridor scam, Punia was later given a clean chit by the CBI. Yash Vardhan Sh

‘Competition policy will motivate everybody’

Youngsters today will have a difficult time imagining long waiting periods to get a telephone connection or buy a scooter. Today, the service providers are queuing up before the consumer. That is the power of competition. But much more needs to be done to curb monopolistic tendencies and promote genuine competition. The Competition Act was passed in 2002, and the Competition Commission of India

"Mr PM, you are punishing better-governed states"

When it comes to social sector indicators, Himachal Pradesh is one of the best performing states. However, that has not been a rewarding point for the hill state, says chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal. Talking to Trithesh Nandan in his Shimla office, the chief minister rues the rough deal the centre doles out to the state. Dhumal alleges that the UPA governmen

“All Manipuris want is good governance”

While most of the rest of India may not care about the northeast, retired IPS officer Prakash Singh, who served long years in the region first as DGP of Assam and then as DG of BSF, feels strongly for it. The recurring blockades in Manipur coupled with the state and central governments’ apathy in dealing with it irked him so much that he filed a PIL in the supreme court alleging that

"BJP has done a lot for Uttarakhand"

Assembly elections are due in Uttarakhand early next year. The Bharatiya Janata Party dropped Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, who remained in news for all the wrong reasons, and brought in BC Khanduri to win the next term. The 77-year-old former army general (he was honoured with an Ati Vishisht Seva medal), known for his no-nonsense administration, had led the party to victory in F

"Retail FDI will boost food security"

Governor Martin Joseph O’Malley of Maryland, United States witnessed some of the fiery debate on FDI in multi-brand retail while he was in India on a seven-day visit. The governor was here leading a 100-member delegation for initiating business and economic development ties. The group consisting of businessmen, educationists and elected officials was the largest ever in it league to have

‘India matters to world food security’

India remains core to world food security plans, says David Phiri, head, policy assistance support service of Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO). In an interview with Trithesh Nandan, he justifies the high food prices but laments that Indian farmers are not benefitting from it. Edited excerpts… What ails Indian agriculture from Food and Agriculture Organisati

`India`s anti-poverty schemes shameful`

Professor Thomas Pogge of Yale University is leading a team of experts commissioned by the Oxfam to design an alternative index for calculating the number of poor people. Pogge, who believes most poverty figures calculated around the world are flawed, is also critical of the World Bank and the millennium development goals (MDGs) on extreme poverty concept. In an interview with Governance Now, h

‘Political will can make RTE a reality’

Kiran Bhatty is the national coordinator of the Right to Education Act with National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR). She has worked in the field of education for several years and was earlier associated with the UNICEF. In an interview with Jasleen Kaur, she talks about the post-facto social audit, a pilot project, which is being conducted in 10 states, and of implementat

“90% Mumbaikars are outsiders”

Sanjay Nirupam, who represents the Mumbai North constituency in Lok Sabha, is in once again in a verbal duel with Uddhav Thackeray, on the controversial issue of ‘outsiders’ in Mumbai. Niruapam hails from Bihar’s Rohtas district and typifies both the promise and challenge of present-day Mumbai. In an exclusive conversation with Governance Now earlier, Nirupam shared his pe

"India is facing a stable famine situation"

Even as the top economists in the government concern themselves with 8 percent growth, they seem to be missing the urgent concerns. Health and human rights activist Dr Binayak Sen talks of India`s nutritional failure and the ramifications it could have in an interview with Governance Now. Dr Sen says that large parts of the country are under the grip of a stable famine

"UPA considers Muslims fools"

Abusaleh Shariff does not mince words. The chief economist at the New Delhibased thinktank National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) does not look for euphemisms when he criticises the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) for ignoring the plight of the Muslim community. Shariff served as member-secretary to the Prime Minister’s High Level Committee to prepare a repor

"Mayawati fancies personal corruption"

National commission for scheduled castes (NCSC) chairman P L Punia has always been finding himself on wrong side of the Mayawati government. There is history behind it. Punia served as a close confidante for the feisty UP chief minister as a bureaucrat. But the parting of her company was bitter.  When Mayawati tried to put blame on him for the Taj corridor scandal, Pu

e-Gov in India should be citizen-centric

Capgemini provides tailored solutions to leading public sector organisations in India and the rest of the world. It supports the public sector with a skilled approach in a number of key areas of expertise, including tax, public security, healthcare, border management and local and regional government. Kishor Chitale, head of India local business services at Capgemini India, spo

Balance between parl and public opinion ideal

United Kingdom House of Commons speaker John Bercow was in India last week - at a time when there ongoing demonstrations in New Delhi for the implementation of Lokpal Bill started. He saw it from close quarters but hesitantly offered his view, while addressing a gathering at Delhi University (DU) on August 19. Edited excerpts of his interaction with students at DU On the

"Seed liability bill needed on the lines of n-liablity"

The seed bil 2010 discussed in parliament on August 4 has several lacunae and will not serve farmers interest, says CPI(M) lok sabha MP and chairman of parliamentary standing committee on agriculture Basudeb Acharia. Acharia wants a seed liability bill along the lines of nuclear liability bill which will fix responsibility on the companies promoting genetically modified seeds in case of any set

"We do not need economists, but philosophers to run the country"

India is big on theory when it comes to development and poverty reduction, says international political economist professor Jean-Pierre Lehmann. He says the approach should be pragmatic, not theoretical. The French economist, working in Switzerland for over 13 years, favours philosophers running the country - in line with philosopher Plato`s beliefs. In an interview with Trithesh Nandan

"Capacity addition targets have been raised"

Union finance minister Pranab Mukherjee  had rare words of praise for his cabinet  colleague when he  extolled power minister Sushilkumar Shinde for the highest capacity addition of 10,462 MW between April 2010 and February 2011. In an interview with Sweta Ranjan, Shinde discusses how he plans to deliver “power to all” by nex

"Twitter is a potent weapon to reach out to public"

J & K Chief minister Omar Abdullah believes that twitter, the micro- blogging site, is a potent weapon to put across his point of view to the public. He has 30,000 followers on the site and he reads what he tweets in the next days’ morning newspapers. Omar talked about his tweet experiences and much more in an interview given to Anil Singh, Executive Editor, Star News. Here are edited


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