Editorial

Editorial

Political budget on anvil

This is the Lok Sabha elections season. The Union budget though technically “interim”, in practical it could be a full budget with many populist announcements. If finance minister Arun Jaitley finally has his way, it will be yet another first for Modi government that advanced budget date to  February 1, one full month early. In an election year, the practice was to present the interim budget and President’s address put off to first session of the new government.

Opinion: eNACH suspension: Digital lenders in pain

Indian digital lending industry has leapfrogged in the past few years. There are many factors leading to its growth trajectory including the advancement in technology, emergence of startup culture, small businesses and online fintech companies.

Mining deaths: Anti-ecology

Disaster struck on December 13 last at a rat-hole coal mine in Jaintia Hills of Meghalaya, in which at least 13 miners got trapped due to a deluge of water rushing into the mine, following the break-down of the chamber due to unscientific illegal mining going on there. Obviously none will be alive today.

Opinion: Payment players’ budget expections

As 2018 became 2019 the music is getting louder for the payment industry which has seen the dinner getting cold thanks to shock changes in regulations leading to flash crashes in net customer addition towards the fag end of the year. Usually, nothing much changes at the dawn of every year, but for the service providers in the digital payment space, the New Year has started with good tidings as the government, the regulators concerned and the related industries did address the distress in the business segment that was growing in leaps and bounds over the past years.

Care for healthcare startups

Emerging healthcare start ups have in recent years used innovation of thought and services to help fill a series of voids in the Indian healthcare system. While digital applications like Lybrate and Practo have changed the dynamics of consultation by bringing thousands of doctors in direct touch with patients, startups like Portea have served to bring hospital care at the doorsteps of chronically ill patients. Yet others are contributing to improve healthcare outcomes by redefining service delivery, reducing diagnostic time and cutting healthcare costs.

Quota for poor: Desperate measure

So, the game-changer is here. First time a quota in jobs and educational institutions on the basis of economic deprivation in lieu of socio-cultural-educational deprivation has been legislated. The Parliament has passed the 124th constitution amendment bill of the Modi government bringing in 10% quota for the economically deprived non-reserved category citizens.

Targeting the vulnerable

When the collective gaze falls on an individual or a community, he/she/they feel that there is nowhere to turn to. Hindus have a long history of being dominant castes, whether they are poor or rich, of upper or lower jyathi, and educated or illiterate. Varna, or pan Indian Hinduism, as MN Srinivas pointed out is a classificatory system that is well recognised all over India, inspite of the dietary differences amongst them. Famously, the Bengali and Kashmiri Brahmins eat meat, and the Syrian Christians like to believe that they are born of lineages which have Brahmin origins.

Why 10% quota could fail constitutional test

To predict whether the ‘Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Fourth Amendment) Bill, 2019’ will stand the scrutiny in courts would be to take on the task of an astrologer. Yes, a few assumptions may be made on the basis of existing precedents on the subject. It has passed through both Houses of the Parliament with all-party support. Many have indicated that this is cynical vote-bank politics, especially on the eve of an election. Its journey through the courts is likely to be far more bumpy.

Opinion: New technologies turn enablers for hiring process

Unlike any time before in the history, technology has permeated the entire organisational process of modern organisations and has

influenced the functional paradigms. The game-changing new technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, and Internet of Things (IoT) have spared any segment including human resources department where traditionally human interface remained the most powerful tool.

Making India globally competitive

India has over ten thousand engineering institutions and over fifteen lakh students graduating from these institutions every year. Factually, a large number and a lion’s share of global engineering talent. Leading global companies seek to hire top talent from India. Indians in top management roles of tech giants and most IT product development teams have a good proportion of Indian engineers. The largest recruiter from the engineering colleges is the IT industry. Demand for talent from the core sector is muted.

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