New column: a UBI for India?

On the eve of general elections, there is an increasingly heated debate in India over the wisdom of introducing a universal basic income for its poorest citizens. This public conversation was triggered by Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s announcement on Monday that, if elected to power, the Congress would introduce a minimum income guarantee for all poor households.

I have a short piece in the Washington Post on the Congress announcement, which came on the same day as a new proposal by Arvind Subramanian and colleagues for a QUBRI–or quasi-universal basic rural income.

You can read the entire piece here.

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The BJP’s East Coast Challenge

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The latest essay in our “India Elects 2019” series explores the BJP’s prospects of expanding its reach along India’s Eastern seaboard. The saffron party is eager to make inroads along the East coast in hopes that victories there can compensate for almost certain losses in the Hindi belt.

In the piece, Jamie Hintson and I take a state-by-state look at the BJP’s prospects. The image below shows how things stacked up in 2014.

You can read the entire essay here.

New essay in Seminar India

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Each year, the Indian journal Seminar devotes its January issue to looking back at the major political issues of the prior year. In the January 2019 issue, I am lucky to have a short essay on the much-hyped political finance “reforms” the Modi government instituted in 2018. I place “reforms” in quotes because I believe the new measures do very little to reform the system–and, in fact, perhaps do the very opposite.

The January 2019 issue has other great essays from thinkers ranging from T.N. Ninan to Srinath Raghavan and Yamini Aiyar. Pick up a copy.

You can read my essay in its entirety here.