Friday, April 26, 2013

Skilling all

Here is my latest work on "All bucks stops at skilling". This is a second piece for the CPPR. I conclude with the following para:

  • On the flip side, the PM’s National Council, NSDC and some select State Governments have done reasonably good work except the NSDCB! The NSDCB had constituted five Sub-Committees on various aspects of vocational education and training for undertaking systemic reforms in the country. All the five Committees Reports have also been submitted. Some of these Committees have made really great recommendations but the tragedy is that Reports of Committees/Commissions constituted by Government are not time bound for implementation of recommendations/suggestions. Secondly, there is more confusion in the projection of target of skilling 50 million during the 12th Plan period. The Economic Survey 2012-13 mentions target skilling of 8 Crore persons in the 12th Plan. The 12th Plan Document of Planning Commission mentions both 50 million as well as 8 Crore! The basis on which these projections arrived is not clear. Thirdly, the annual capacity of skill training of various Ministries/Departments is around 4 million persons only. Hence, the annual target of skilling 90 lakh persons for 2013-14 is also looks unfeasible. The above skill training numbers includes all the major Central Ministries/Departments/Organisations involved in skill development and training in the country. Fourthly, despite the best of efforts of many new institutional setups with inclusion of industry experts and civil society activists, the Central government is still finding difficulty in bringing out a comprehensive amendment’s to the filthy Apprenticeship Act, 1961. However, the future is filled with a lot of positive energy. Let’s face it boldly.

Some links

"India is a vibrant democracy, and as the economic system failed the economically weak, the political system tried to compensate."

Why we still need to read Hayek: Hayek Lecture at Duck by Professor John B Taylor

"He doesn’t want the odium of polarized votes to overshadow his development and governance agenda. At best it should be a collateral benefit. He is smart enough, certainly, to know that young Indians, while deeply religious themselves, have moved beyond wanting to see religion used as a political tool."

"Learned Hand once wrote something that seems like an apt description of the wider context: "A community is already in the process of dissolution where each man begins to eye his neighbour as a possible enemy, where non-conformity is a mark of disaffection, where denunciation, without specification or backing takes place of evidence, where orthodoxy chokes freedom of dissent, and where faith in the eventual supremacy of reason has become so timid that we dare not enter our convictions in open lists." More here.

“He must be prepared to speak about everything, and often about nothing. He is expected to preserve temples, to keep the currency steady, to satisfy third-class passengers, to patronise race meetings, to make Bombay and Calcutta each think that it is the Capital city of India, and to purify the police… If he does not reform everything that is wrong, he is told that he is doing too little, if he reforms anything at all, that he is doing too much.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Interesting reading

I have been travelling a bit for some time and will be back soon!

Meanwhile, you may like to read the following articles:
  • "What do you call an Indian economist who keeps attacking Indo-US economic ties? A US diplomat posted in India in the 1970s called professor B R Shenoy of the Delhi-based The Economics Research Centre, "a decent but a crackpot economist" whose "pearls of wisdom" have often been sent to various US political figures." More here.
"Among many thing that Dr Ambedkar’s party promised, the following were key issues that it would deal with on a priority basis if it came to power:
  1. Agriculture must be mechanised. Agriculture in India can never prosper so long as the method of cultivation remained primitive
  2. To mechanise farming, cultivation on small holdings must be replaced by large farms
  3. To increase the yield, there must be provision for adequate manure and for the supply of healthy seeds But here is a contradiction which is monumental in nature. The Communist movement opposed mechanisation of agriculture. In fact, opposing mechanisation of agriculture has been a big issue for them." More here.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

"The bloated and suffocating socialist model"

Interesting book review:
  • "Joseph Stiglitz, Belgian-born Jean Drèze and Harvard's Amartya Sen, for being "intellectually lazy and unwilling to learn from the ruin they had visited on India and its poor."
  • "Between 1965 and 1975, per capita income in India rose by a minuscule 0.3% annually. If you were to draw up a list of post-colonial leaders responsible for economic crimes against their people, Indira Gandhi's name would figure near the top. By one Cato Institute estimate, India would have had 175 million fewer poor people by 2008 had it embarked upon reforms in 1971 instead of 1991."

Early Indian economists

Last Friday I attended a talk delivered by Mr.J Krishnamurty on "The Rise of the Indian Economist Before Independence" at IIC, New Delhi. The talk was based on his book published recently.

Though, I had healthy discussion with him after the talk. But the talk was not very interesting. Mr Krishnamurty was not very sure about many of the economists (listed in his book) works in totality. He is also more confused on taking position about works of economists like B. R. Ambedkar, B.R.Shenoy, S.V.Doraiswmi, C.N Vakil, etc. His conclusion about early Indian economists is disaster. In fact, some of them are factually incorrect. He says that almost all the early (since 1930) Indian economists were "Keynesians" which is not true at all.

I simply ask why should the retired people take pleasure in the History of Indian Economic Thoughts, let alone the subject remain in infant?