Current Public Administration Magazine (JANUARY 2021)

Sample Material of Current Public Administration Magazine

1. Accountability and Responsibility

  • How internet shutdowns damage democracy

Most of the activities that started as pen-paper exercises have now turned digital. From operations of small businesses to meetings, from food delivery to banking, there is some digital touch in everyone’s life. Who would have imagined, even two decades ago, that even media houses would be glued to Twitter accounts of Presidents for major announcements? I strongly believe that the element of digital has provided a platform to millions who feel more valued and more heard. I was surprised to discover that there is a term for the fear of being without a mobile device: nomophobia. There was even a joke doing rounds on social media as COVID-19 brought the world to a sudden halt: “Who brought the digital transformation in your organization?” The answer was not the CEO or the CTO but COVID-19. 

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2. Indian Government and Politics

  • Governing Delhi requires will to uphold Constitution — not alter it

On the face of it, the amendment to the National Capital Territory Act 1991 was introduced in Parliament to give effect to a July 2018 judgement of a 5-judge constitutional bench. While purporting to do so, the Bill has, in fact, planted several curbs on the functioning of the legislative assembly of Delhi as well as its council of ministers. The Supreme Court, without striking one single note of dissent or dissonance in a 536-page order, clause by clause, had clarified the difference between the constitutional arrangement designed for Delhi and that available for any other Union Territory.

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3. Social Administration

  • Lessons from Tagore for India’s post-pandemic education policy

As the COVID-19 pandemic refuses to die down, with a renewed resurgence causing devastation across the world, a global concerted effort where the technological advancement in the West has enabled the production of a vaccine to be utilised by the rest of the world, has once again highlighted the need for international cooperation. This, at a time when more and more nations were turning inwards. This inwardlooking policy making of nations does more harm than good. It has been forecast by some that the coronavirus might be a permanent reality. In this scenario, the National Education Policy 2020 (NEP) needs to be revised. 

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4. Current Topic

  • Make every drop of water count for sustainable agriculture

On World Water day (March 22) Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the “Catch the Rain” campaign under the government’s flagship programme, Jal Shakti Abhiyan. He emphasised the importance of using every penny spent under MGNREGA to conserve water. This is a laudable objective. But what is the state of our water resources? How can we ensure that everyone has access to safe drinking water, while industry and agriculture also get sufficient supplies to produce enough to meet the country’s demands? These issues demand close attention.

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5. Financial Administration

  • Why privatising public assets is poor economics, impetus to greater wealth inequality

The government has adduced no reasons for the proposed privatisation of several public sector assets other than to generate resources for its spending. Let us see what such a fiscal strategy involves. Nobody buys public sector assets by skimping on consumption. Nor does one buy such assets by skimping on investment: Current investment expenditure depends on decisions taken in the past and is more or less pre-determined. It is only investment decisions that are taken today for fructification tomorrow that may be scaled down by such a purchase; and if investment decisions taken today are scaled-down, then it is an authentic case of “crowding out” and such a strategy should be avoided anyway. 

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