In a very interesting turn of events, Mr Pawar's babus have declared that farm outputs in 2005-06 could be far lower than earlier projections because in 2004-05, as it has turned out finally, we didn't produce too much. There can be two explanations.
The issue of religious conflict is effectively taking away attention from the huge poverty of ideas and issues in today's politics, and more importantly, the dismal failure of and the abdication of responsibility by the administration at many levels.
In a low-key, taxfree, investment and welfare spending oriented budget intended to raise few hackles, especially in those states that go to polls, the FM says he simply wanted to go for growth. Updates
It's easy to get carried away by the warm, fuzzy after-effects of growth. As the giant machine starts humming, it would obviously need more and more fuel to run well. And then there are the "flagship programmes" that need to be "adequately funded".
Home loan rates are up from 6-7% in 11/04 to over 8% now, and RBI's latest move can spike many fond dreams, turn many new deals bad, and upset the household budgets of those who had reached a few inches beyond their means.
Despite concrete statistical evidence that quotas have not and do not work, we are back to affirmative actions on paper to satisfy all petty politicians and our conscience at the same time and pat ourselves on the back for a 'political masterstroke'.
Motley groups of agitators strongly believe WTO has not done anything good for the poor. Sadly, it is simply because it has hardly got an opportunity to function properly - and yet there have been two very important gains from it