Writing in The New Indian Express, Shankkar Aiyar, argues that the States need to play an active role in arresting the slowdown in the Economy. Excerpts:
"But a crisis is the best time to shift from status quo, to propel ideas that carry the promise of sustainable growth. The question that begs to be asked is can the economy grow without dynamic, pro-active propulsion of growth by the states.
The unstated fact is that the operating system of the economy is structurally centralised whereas what is needed is an Android approach to promoting growth. Every major next-generation reform must come from the states. Yet there is scarcely any movement on liberating land, labour or on cleaning up clearances and regulatory cholesterol.”
Addressing mounting losses of state electricity boards:
"For decades India’s electricity sector has suffered from a socialist myth that there can be a market of sellers without buyers. The cure for SEBs losing a quarter of the power supplied is located in installing competition at the last mile. The BJP has a historic majority in Delhi and is in power in over 15 states. Unbundling of the last mile could curb theft, losses, create jobs and boost growth. Yet its chief ministers in the states balk at the very idea."
On the cure for rural indebtedness and agrarian distress:
"Collective or contract farming can address the design and delivery of a new market-oriented cropping pattern. Yet the model law for contract farming designed by the Centre is languishing — as are the promises to disband politically-backed cartels masquerading as APMCs!"
Read the full article here.