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फ़रवरी, 2017 की पोस्ट दिखाई जा रही हैं

DeMon to ReMon: Govt claims success but doesn't reveal details under RTI

By Venkatesh Nayak* The demonetisation of currency notes of Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 500 denomination that the Government announced on 8 November, 2016 and the subsequent remonetisation of the economy has affected almost every person living in India. It came as a revelation when the media reported that many people in neighbouring Nepal were also adversely affected by the demonetisation of the high value currency notes when they sent a delegation to India to mitigate the note-ban crisis in January this year. So the Olympian DeMon-ReMon exercise affected billions of people within and across India’s borders. Despite the Government spending taxpayers’ money to shore up public support for DeMon-ReMon exercise and the digitisation plan to move to a less-cash economy by linking it to ‘national pride’, detailed information about what went before and what followed this exercise is hard to come by. On the one hand movie and TV ‘celebrities’ (who probably never had to stand in a queue before banks or A

Political party funding through electoral bonds: Backward leap to era of secrecy

By Venkatesh Nayak* While presenting the budget in the Lok Sabha (Lower House of Parliament) yesterday, the Hon’ble Finance Minister made some announcements about the manner in which he sought to make donations to political parties more transparent. If the proposals to amend the relevant laws are approved by Parliament, from April 2017 onwards, donations in cash can be made up to Rs. 2,000 only by any person; payments of higher value will be permitted only through cheques or digital mode and donors will be able to buy ‘electoral bonds’ that will be sold through commercial banks under the regulations made by the Reserve Bank of India. Some commentators have hailed this as a major step forward while some of us have expressed skepticism about this initiative . An analysis of what the Government is proposing and what it means for transparency of political party funding is given below for readers to understand better without having to trawl through the Finance Bill, 2017 . In short, if the