Reading Foucault & thinking college activism

This has been in the making for several years now – trying to identify the causal chain from ideas to action, especially since the first reading of Foucault. The ongoing trouble in colleges and universities of Delhi presents a case to reflect upon this causal chain. There comes a phase in student life when encounters […]

When bad guys get elected

Here is a quick take on the electoral process prompted by a twitter conversation with a friend. This first appeared on Lokniti blog. This polemical piece is a consequence of a twitter conversation with another MPP grad (@suhasd1988) on an article in NYT by Maskin and Sen that he shared. The authors explain how a […]

Engaging Modern Indian Political Thought – A discussion

‘The problem with Indian scholarship is that it lacks a robust, critical biographical tradition’ – This remark was made by historian Ramachandra Guha who spoke at the university this week on modern Indian political thought. It is striking because I have often felt the absence of scholarship on several forgotten heroes of Indian independence as well […]

On a lesser hero of Indian Politics – Lohia and Caste in Indian Politics

The following is a review of political thoughts and writings of Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia who happens to be a lesser known figure of Indian independence movement and of the political transformation that unfolded in the 1950-70 period. Lohia’s vision of egalitarian politics appears to be a case of lost opportunity for Indian politics and […]

It is not his job! On politicians, development and development agencies

From a recent report that we prepared for an NGO, a reader asked “What is that MLA’s incentive to push for proper/improved drinking water system” referring to a small case study on a Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) in a constituency who was trying to help the drinking water crisis in his town. So here […]

Micro-managing the odds

“Micro-managing the odds” an Op-Ed piece in The Hindu by Srikrishna Ayyangar a Professor in Politics at APU. It looks at the this year’s Magsaysay Award winner IVDP’s work and relates it to the larger political process in Tamil Nadu. It is simple and clear in argument. However, I do not quite agree with the idea […]

On Post-Colonial Politics in India & Development’s Refugees

One of the most satisfying moment for me lately has been about doing a field study and then returning to the desk to rigorously engage with the subject, in a way that the field observations actually test the theory. In this case, I return from an exploration of hawkers’ livelihoods to the political framework that […]