Rebuilding a sustainable economy post COVID-19
The global economy is in recession, and it is predicted to be more destructive than the Great Depression of 1929 and the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2007. India too has been hit hard – tens of millions have lost their jobs, and the economy is projected to shrink by 4-9% in 2020-21. The last time the Indian economy contracted by more than 5% was in 1979 when the entire country was devastated by a once in a century drought (and some regions with floods).
Both Morarji Desai’s and Charan Singh’s governments fell, and we had mid-term elections which brought Indira Gandhi back into power. The fallout of this political upheaval was the founding of the Bharatiya Janata Party in early 1980, which successfully challenged the Congress and came to power within two decades. I believe that the India in which we live in today was in many ways created in 1979. The question is: What kind of India will the 2020 economic recession create? And, can we steer the ‘new’ India towards a more just, equitable and sustainable society?