News & Politics
India Today

India Today December 16, 2019

India Today is the leading news magazine and most widely read publication in India. The magazine’s leadership is unquestioned, so much so that India Today is what Indian journalism is judged by, for its integrity and ability to bring unbiased and incisive perspective to arguably the most dynamic, yet perplexing, region in the world. Breaking news and shaping opinion, it is now a household name and the flagship brand of India’s leading multidimensional media group. Additionally, the weekly brings with it a range supplements like Women, Home, Aspire, Spice and Simply which focus on style, health, education, fashion, etc. and Indian cities.

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52 Issues

in this issue

5 min.
from the editor-in-chief

Over the past few months, the Indian economy’s growth engines—from real estate to agriculture to exports and internal consumption—have coughed and sputtered to a halt. The economy is now in free fall. Figures recently released by the government have confirmed our worst fears. India’s GDP growth plunged to a 26-quarter low of 4.5 per cent in the July-September quarter of 2019-20 as manufacturing contracted, investments weakened and consumption demand fell. GDP growth stood at 8.1 per cent in the same period a year ago. In the first quarter of this fiscal, it was just 5 per cent, already the slowest in six years. The steep decline is now approaching a danger mark—3.5 per cent—the metaphorical ‘Hindu rate of growth’, a coinage of the economist Raj Krishna for India’s sluggish growth…

3 min.
a perennial tear-jerker

High onion prices have returned to haunt the government. In Mumbai, onions are currently retailing at Rs 120 a kilo, compared with the Rs 10-30 a kilo they were sold at as recently as August this year. The main reason for these eye-watering prices has been the unseasonal rainfall in Maharashtra, one of India’s major onion-producing states, along with Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. India, one of the top three onion-producing countries in the world, produced 23.5 million tonnes of onions in 2018-19. “This is becoming a frequent affair, with the prolonged monsoon damaging the crop and raising prices,” says Madan Sabnavis, chief economist with Care Ratings. Onion production takes place in three seasons in Maharashtra. The unseasonal rains destroyed the kharif crop, which was to be harvested in October-November. Rains have…

3 min.
the pit stop at madrid

Two issues—carbon credits and funding to deal with the loss and damage caused by climate change—will dominate proceedings at the ongoing 25th Conference of the Parties (COP) in Madrid, Spain. Hovering over the COP are larger questions—the deep cuts in emissions climate scientists strain to emphasise are necessary to prevent an irreversible slide into extremely dangerous levels of warming and the more ambitious pledges that countries have to make next year to that end. Carbon credits work by commodifying and trading carbon dioxide notionally not emitted through improved industrial processes. One thorny issue at Madrid is whether the carbon credits accumulated by companies and countries under the Kyoto Protocol can be carried forward beyond 2020. The governments of India (which reportedly has 750 million CER credits) and Brazil argue that past…

5 min.
“threats from non-state actors are real and imminent”

Eleven years ago, Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists used the sea route to strike at Mumbai. A decade after the horrific attacks, Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral KARAMBIR SINGH says that the threat of seaborne attacks remains just as great now, even as the navy is working with multiple stakeholders to counter them. In this interview with Executive Editor SANDEEP UNNITHAN, Singh speaks about the seaborne threat of Pakistan-based non-state actors, the navy’s modernisation challenges and more Q. On August 27, you said that the Jaishe-Mohammed (JeM) was training its cadre to carry out underwater attacks. Do you have intelligence about the presence of state actors involved in this? A. Intelligence regarding training of cadres by JeM for underwater attacks has been received on various occasions in the past. Such training would not be…

2 min.
where indians study

India sends more young people to universities abroad than any country in the world, barring China, with English-speaking countries like the United States, Australia, Canada and Britain the most attractive destinations. While Germany, Russia, Ukraine, China and Malaysia have attracted Indian students for years, the likes of Spain are also admitting more Indian students than before. An international student survey released in the US in November showed that numbers of Indian students were on the rise, even though data released by the Ministry of Human Resource Development showed a marked decline in the numbers of Indian students going to the US between 2017-18 and 2018-19 and a rise in the number of Indian students in other countries. The government data did not include the most recent data for Britain, released…

1 min.

“I have gone around the country and met industry leaders. I have gone around the country where people both in social media and to my face said, ‘Oh my God! You are the worst finance minister we have seen’, not even waiting for me to finish six months of my tenure... It is this government under Prime Minister Modi that listens to criticism, which responds to criticism with positivity, rather than keep sitting and criticising.” Speaking in the Lok Sabha, finance minister NIRMALA SITHARAMAN responded to the furore sparked by industrialist Rahul Bajaj’s direct questions to home minister Amit Shah about an atmosphere of fear in the country, arguably fanned by the BJP and the party’s perceived intolerance of criticism. She had already responded on Twitter, accusing Bajaj, though not by…