Samir’s Selection 07/04/2013 (p.m.)

  • “The authors argue that the state fails mainly because of deeply entrenched inequality. A ruling elite defined by caste, but also by gender, education and income, has an utter lack of interest-verging on contempt-in improving matters for the rest. Newspaper editors and readers, judges, NGO activists and academics are also drawn largely from privileged backgrounds, and care little.

    Given the feeble state machinery and the ingrained prejudice, is there any way out? Despite the gloom, Mr Sen and Mr Drèze remain optimistic about the long-term outlook. They point to evidence that India’s bureaucrats, when properly led and held accountable, can function well. Even northern states like Himachal Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have recently inaugurated flourishing public schemes, distributing food rations on time and cheaply, for example. India is only doomed, they argue, if nobody tries to make it work.”

    tags: India-economics India-politics India-culture development AmartyaSen

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