Chandrayaan 2 is almost a metaphor for the Indian economy. The weekend’s disappointment over India’s first moonshot after a febrile build-up resembles the discontent over the anaemic economy after the huge expectations from Narendra Modi’s electoral comeback. On the economic front, the first 100 days of Modis’ second term saw growth slip to a 17-year low (in nominal terms), making the next 100 days are critical for the government to show that the India story is still alive, says the lead edit here. Chandrayaan 2, public sector bank mergers and climate change are the other topics opinion writers tackle on the opinion pages. Kanika Datta sums up the views
Landing a craft on the moon has zero practical pay-off, says Ajay Shah. Instead, ISRO should take a leaf out of NASA’s copybook and focus on building the next level of knowledge through intelligent contracting.
The decision to merge ten public sector banks into four big banks addresses only half the challenge.
The government would benefit if it went a step further and allowed these banks to function independently, says Tamal Bandyopadhyay.
Both UPA and NDA governments had the luxury of neglecting trade policy since falling oil prices did not strain the Balance of Payments. But exports is the key to sustaining long-term growth and creating jobs. Jayanta Roy sets out the agenda for trade policy reform.
The committee to examine the possibilities for a secondary market for corporate loans suggested the creation of a self-regulatory body to manage the secondary market. But the deeper issue is how to make the market more liquid, says the second edit.
The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification was introduced in the Rio Conference in 1992 as a sop to African and other developing countries. Now it is front and centre of the world’s climate change challenge. Sunita Narain outlines the agenda.