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Ashok Kotwal
On demonetisation
Posted on: 23 Dec 2016
On the evening of 8 November, the Prime Minister announced on national television that Rs. ... read on »
A symposium on Piketty: Introduction
Posted on: 15 Jun 2015
Thomas Piketty’s book on ´Capital in the Twenty First Century’ has made waves. The f ... read on »
Emerging challenges: Economic and social
Posted on: 06 Aug 2014
To mark the second anniversary of I4I in July 2014, we invited two eminent scholars – Abhi ... read on »

Tag: colonialism

Common tongue? How mother tongue instruction influences education
Tarun Jain , Revathy Suryanarayana
Posted on: 27 Feb 2017
Topics:   Education


The recently released draft of the National Education Policy stresses the importance of education in the mother tongue, especially in the formative years at school. This column seeks to uncover the link between vernacular language use in schools and educational achievement using data from large-scale historical events in South India. It finds that mother-tongue instruction led to persistent increases in educational achievement in primary and secondary schooling.
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Regulating land markets: The colonial inheritance
Anand Swamy
Posted on: 10 Feb 2016
Topics:   Land


State intervention in markets is usually thought of as a post-independence phenomenon. However, this column demonstrates that extensive State intervention in land and credit transactions can be traced back to policies adopted by the British Raj in India, beginning in the late 19th century.
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Why did the Indian economy stagnate under the colonial rule?
Aniruddha Bagchi
Posted on: 16 Sep 2013
Topics:   Economic Growth
Tags:   colonialism


How did the Indian economy fare under the colonial rule? Is the average Indian significantly better off after Independence? This column examines trends in GDP per capita in order to determine the standard of living in India under the British rule. It also explores the possible causes of stagnation in the Indian economy for about two centuries between 1750 and independence.
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What constrained the expansion of education in British India?
Latika Chaudhury
Posted on: 22 Jul 2013
Topics:   Education


Education and human capital development were neglected in colonial India. This column explores how colonial policies interacted with local conditions to influence the trajectory of Indian education. It finds that public spending on education was inadequate and susceptible to elite capture, and that the lack of focus on education was an important constraint on economic growth in the country during that period.
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Microfinance and predatory lending: The same old story?
Latika Chaudhury , Anand Swamy
Posted on: 19 Sep 2012

Once hailed as a near-miraculous way of lending money to the poor, microfinance is now often seen as exploitation – and governments are stepping in. This column looks at another point in India’s history where lawmakers have intervened in lending practices: following the Deccan Riots between farmers and moneylenders in 1876. It argues that in hindsight this was an overreaction – and perhaps there is a lesson for today.
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