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Embed: 23-05-15 -- vas / Policy Report No.8 / From The HIndu

Nurses of KEM hospital, Mumbai, gather to pay their last respects to Aruna Shanbaug, who died on May 18, 2015, after living comatose for 42 years as a victim of brutal assault and rape. PHOTO: Vivek Bhendre

How India Failed Aruna Shanbaug

Vasundhara Sirnate

The life and death of Aruna Shanbaug, comatose for over four decades after she was raped, calls for a reexamination of India's policies towards victims of rape and violence against women. In this article, Vasundhara Sirnate, throws the spotlight on state inadequacies, which, along with systemic apathy, trample upon any fight for justice for victims of rape and other forms of gender-based violence. Unless there is improved forensic capacity to prosecute sex offenders, and an efficient apparatus to fight sexual assault, the new laws may continue to be ineffective in deterring violence and delivering justice to the victims.

Nandini Dubey_Policy Report No.8

Policy Report No. 8

The Future of Post Offices as Banking Institutions in India

Nandini Dubey

This report seeks to integrate threads of India’s financial inclusion dynamics and recognise the role post offices could play with their homespun technology. It anticipates a future for Indian post offices as banking institutions, taking into consideration the deposits, performance, and administration of the branches that provide Core Banking Solutions (CBS) in Chennai. This report will look at the transitions and institutional layering that the Post Office Savings Banking is going through. This report aims to provide an unbiased evaluation of post office banking, focussing on the loopholes that need to be plugged in the process of institutional layering. The report includes suggestions that will enable the Indian postal services to become an instrument of financial inclusion. The main conclusion of the study is that post offices can do better as an agency commission for credit facilities than as a provider of first party services.

From The Hindu

More constitutional than political


A reasonable case can be made that the Delhi Lieutenant Governor’s discretionary powers do not extend to the appointment of the Chief Secretary without the ‘aid and advice’ of the Chief Minister and his Council of Ministers

The tussle between the Delhi Chief Minister, Arvind Kejriwal and Delhi Lieutenant Governor, Najeeb Jung, much in the news, raises several constitutional and legal issues on the scope and extent of their powers in the National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi.

The Arena

This combination photo made from file images provided by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration shows cigarette warning labels from the FDA. India's attempts to implement a law that mandates larger health warnings on tobacco products are thwarted by vested interests. File photo: AP

Public Health Policy and the Tobacco Industry

Smoking out the Elephant in the Room

Aparna Ravi

A law making it mandatory for health warnings to cover 85 per cent of the total display area on packages of tobacco products was put on hold in March, five days before it was to take effect. In this article, Aparna Ravi calls for the implementation of internationally accepted guidelines to protect public health policies from being influenced by the vested interests of the tobacco industry by taking proactive measures to address conflicts of interest.Aparna Ravi


Full Text: Supreme Court judgment on Section 66A of Information Technology Act, 2000

On March 24, 2015, the Supreme Court of India struck down Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, 2000, describing it as unconstitutional.

from Group Publications


Get real with public sector banks


Governance, management and operational issues of public sector banks need to be resolved to secure quick reforms. Instead, the government is all set to pursue some grand design


Rajya Sabha MP Jairam Ramesh adressing the public lecture on Climate Change and India's Energy Policy in Bengaluru on Monday. Photos: The Hindu : Sampath Kumar G P

Individuals can reduce India’s carbon footprint: Jairam Ramesh

In a public lecture on climate change, Jairam Ramesh explores the various energy alternatives that the country has in reducing its carbon footprint and says that India has a pivotal role in global climate change negotiations. The lecture was organised by The Hindu Centre and the National Institute for Advanced Studies on November 10, 2014, in Bengaluru.

Constructing Heritage : Lecture by Romila Thapar

The Second Rukmini Devi Memorial Lecture delivered by Romila Thapar, Emeritus Professor in Ancient History, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, on Dec. 20, 2014, at Kalakshetra Foundation, Chennai.

It is indeed an honour for me to have been invited to give this lecture, and I greatly appreciate it. Kalakshetra has been something of a legend from the time it was founded by Rukmini Devi and subsequently for the work that it sustains. The respect for the institution grows both for the attention it gives to what we regard as our heritage and for helping in the construction of an on-going heritage. Since both history and heritage conduct a dialogue between the past and the present, we have much to talk about.

‘Heritage’ means that which is inherited. It is used for many things – from genes to geometrical patterns, from property to culture. It was once assumed that heritage is what has been handed down to us by our ancestors, neatly packaged, which we pass on to our descendants, as is implicit in the term, parampara. We sometimes call it tradition. This is what goes into the making of our cultures and our civilization. Heritage is thought of as static whereas tradition is said to mould our way of life. We prefer to think that these have been passed down from generation to generation, relatively untouched. But the more we seek to understand them, the more we realize that each generation changes the contents, sometimes marginally and sometimes substantially.

    Amid a plethora of cleverly named new schemes and tech-fixes, the HRD Ministry is busy tinkering with bureaucratic processes.

    The economy has revived and the Centre has shed its policy paralysis. Corporates now need to rework strategy


    The IAS today

    The factors afflicting the Indian Administrative Service are many, but little is done to correct them.

    Kashmir's Crossroads
    Vasundhara Sirnate

    Two grassy green mounds sit beside each other next to a makeshift irrigation canal in Ajas-Bazipora, twin villages near the Bandipora district of Jammu and Kashmir. Unmarked and nondescript, the knolls are easily mistaken for an undulation of packed soil.

    Convocation Speech delivered by N. Ram, Chairman, Kasturi & Sons Limited, at the 75th Convocation of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, on May 12, 2015. [PDF]

    A peek into the latest book, Legislating for Justice: The Making of the 2013 Land Acquisition Law, authored jointly by Jairam Ramesh, MP, Senior Visiting Fellow, The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy, and former Union Minister, and Muhammad Ali Khan