(This is the text of the open letter written by the eminent left cultural activist Sohail Hashmi to Com. Pinarayi Vijayan on the Hadiya case)
by Samarth Bansal and Aman Sethi
On October 4, Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered a robust defence of his government’s management of the economy, shortly after the Reserve Bank of India lowered its Gross Value Added (GVA) growth estimates for the current fiscal year from 7.3% to 6.7%.
Since then, the ruling party has been pains to push a positive narrative on the economy, extent of emailing clips of the speech to journalists who write about the economy.
So, what is the current state of the economy? Here’s a reality check.
How many jobs has the economy created?
Modi said: “Upto March 2014, the subscriber base of the Employees Provident Fund Organization (EPFO) stood at 3.26 crore. Over the last three years, the numbers increased to 4.8 crore. Some people forget that this number can’t increased without a corresponding increase in employment.”
Reality Check: EPFO numbers have increased, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that total employment has increased. In July this year, this jump in EPFO subscribers was attributed to a government amnesty scheme which allowed firms to come clean on their actual staff strength without being penalized. In a detailed note, Mahesh Vyas, Managing Director and CEO of the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), explained why using EPFO data as a proxy for job creation is “fraught with danger.”
Referring to the jump in the subscriber base, Vyas wrote: “This is not new employment. It is merely enrollment of employed persons into EPFO.”
[A version of this letter has also been sent to Com. MC Josephine, Chairperson, Kerala State Women’s Commission] Continue reading “End the isolation and imprisonment of Hadiya: Feminists write to the Chief Minister of Kerala”
[This is the text of the open letter written by eminent economist and leading development activist Prof. Amit Bhaduri, to Com. Pinarayi Vijayan] Continue reading “Let us rise to the defense of the Indian Constitution: Letter to the Kerala Chief Minister from Prof. Amit Bhaduri”
This is a guest post by RITUPARNA SENGUPTA
Amit V Masurkar’s recently-released film Newton explores facets of Indian democracy at its most vulnerable. For these times of ‘nationalist’ bravado, this is a courageous topic. The film is so named because it adopts for the most part, the point of view of its protagonist, Newton (Nutan) Kumar (Rajkummar Rao, thank you once again!) who resists corruption and hypocrisy at home and work. Continue reading “The Gravity of Newton : Rituparna Sengupta”
[This is the text of the open letter written by the eminent poet and public intellectual K Satchidanandan to Com. Pinarayi Vijayan] Continue reading “Help us resist the Hindutva thought-machine: K Satchidanandan writes to the Chief Minister of Kerala”