April 04, 2020
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Crux Of The Naxal Problem

Taking off from Kobad Ghandy's old interview to the BBC, Bibek Debroy says that while rebels like him fudge on the Naxal brutality, they need to be heard:

What’s the problem? Stated simply, some geographical regions and communities have been bypassed by the growth process.

...First, there has been abdication by government on physical and social infrastructure (health and education mentioned by Ghandy) and law and order... The criminal justice system (and the civil one too) doesn’t deliver. Consequently, there is the post-1970s Bollywood route of taking the law into one’s own hands, or resorting to alternative channels like mafia and now, Naxalites. Minimum wages are yet another instance of abdication, mentioned both by the TF and Ghandy.

Second, while abdication is indirect, there is direct harassment of the poor through usurping their land and forest rights. Though statistical analysis done by the TF [Task Force] is not methodologically robust, it shows correlation between Naxalite movements and 10 factors: 

  • high share of SC/ST population
  • low literacy; 
  • high infant mortality; 
  • low urbanisation; 
  • high forest cover; 
  • high share of agricultural labour; 
  • low per capita food-grain production; 
  • low road network penetration; 
  • low financial inclusion; and 
  • high share of rural households without assets. 

This is a development cum governance deficit.

Read the full piece at the Indian Express: The Insurgent's Mind

Crux Of The Naxal Problem
outlookindia.com
1970-01-01T05:30:00+0530

Taking off from Kobad Ghandy's old interview to the BBC, Bibek Debroy says that while rebels like him fudge on the Naxal brutality, they need to be heard:

What’s the problem? Stated simply, some geographical regions and communities have been bypassed by the growth process.

...First, there has been abdication by government on physical and social infrastructure (health and education mentioned by Ghandy) and law and order... The criminal justice system (and the civil one too) doesn’t deliver. Consequently, there is the post-1970s Bollywood route of taking the law into one’s own hands, or resorting to alternative channels like mafia and now, Naxalites. Minimum wages are yet another instance of abdication, mentioned both by the TF and Ghandy.

Second, while abdication is indirect, there is direct harassment of the poor through usurping their land and forest rights. Though statistical analysis done by the TF [Task Force] is not methodologically robust, it shows correlation between Naxalite movements and 10 factors: 

  • high share of SC/ST population
  • low literacy; 
  • high infant mortality; 
  • low urbanisation; 
  • high forest cover; 
  • high share of agricultural labour; 
  • low per capita food-grain production; 
  • low road network penetration; 
  • low financial inclusion; and 
  • high share of rural households without assets. 

This is a development cum governance deficit.

Read the full piece at the Indian Express: The Insurgent's Mind

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