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Governance

Labour Reforms

23rd September – Labour Reforms

Labour laws dilution Recently, the government withdrew three Bills related to labour laws and replaced them with new ones. These Bills make significant changes to regulation of labour and the employer-employee relationship in several ways. Background – India has a complex regime of labour laws, and several committees have recommended simplifying and rationalising them. Last …

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Administrative Reforms

16th September – Administrative reforms

Transforming public administration – Administrative reforms Every government since 1947, irrespective of political affiliation, has expressed frustration at the inefficiency of India’s vast bureaucracy and the maze of red-tape. Hundreds of committees have provided recommendations but the basic structure of public administration has remained unaltered. Therefore, it is no small matter that the government has …

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Malnutrition

15th September – Addressing malnutrition

Addressing malnutrition Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah have launched a campaign declaring the month of September as “POSHAN Maah 2020”. By inviting citizens to send nutritional recipes, the campaign aims to create awareness about the POSHAN Abhiyan through community mobilisation. But how far it can help solve India’s massive malnutrition problem …

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Blockchain Voting

11th September – Blockchain Voting

Blockchain Voting The Election Commission of India has for a while now been toying with the idea of further digitising the electoral infrastructure of the country. In furtherance of this, the Election Commission had held an online conference in collaboration with the Tamil Nadu e-Governance Agency (“TNeGA”) and IIT Madras, through which they explored the …

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GST Compensation

8th September – GST Compensation

GST Compensation The 41st meeting of the GST Council was held recently with the singular agenda of finding a solution to the question of how best to ensure that the compensation payable to the States as part of the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax continues to be paid. Background – The background for …

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GST

2nd September – Reforming the GST

GST reform needs a new grand bargain Three years ago, the Centre and the States of the Union of India struck a grand bargain resulting in the launch of the unified Goods and Services Tax (GST) era. The nationwide GST promised frictionless commerce across State borders, buoyant and leakproof tax compliance, and removal of inefficiencies …

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Specified Financial Transactions

27th August – Specified Financial Transactions

Specified Financial Transactions One significant change in the new Income Tax Return e-filing form is the new Form 26AS — which has been effective from June 1, 2020 — which would alert the taxpayer about his or her large financial transactions through the year. This is mentioned in the statement of specified financial transactions (SFTs). …

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Fiscal Council

26th August – Fiscal Council

Fiscal Council The fiscal situation in India has been under severe stress even before COVID-19 and the novel coronavirus pandemic has only worsened it. Key statistics – The fiscal deficit of the Centre in 2019-20 as estimated by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) was 4.6%, 0.8 percentage point higher than the revised estimate. For …

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Food Security

25th August – Food security in India

India’s food insecurity Data from the latest edition of the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report show that India retains the dubious distinction of being the country with the largest population of food insecure people. Estimates presented in the report which was released by several United Nations organisations show that …

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Health ID

20th August – National Digital Health Mission

National Digital Health Mission The National Digital Health Mission (NDHM) announced by the Prime Minister on Independence Day has the potential to transform the healthcare sector, making it more technologically advanced, inclusive and delivery-driven. How? The move to use technology to streamline processes such as medical record-keeping, sharing of healthcare data, appointments and similar healthcare …

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