People on the UK’s coronavirus furlough scheme should be put to work to help the country out of the crisis

by Rashmee

Posted on May 19, 2020 / The Focus


At the moment, 7.5 million jobs in the UK are covered by the government’s furlough scheme, that’s an awful lot of people out of work. They say there are always lessons we can learn from history. In that case, it’s worth examining an 18th century proto-Keynesian state intervention in north India that proved successful. It … Continue reading “People on the UK’s coronavirus furlough scheme should be put to work to help the country out of the crisis”

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UK furlough scheme could learn from 18th century proto-Keynesian state intervention in India

by Rashmee

Posted on May 17, 2020


With 7.5 million jobs in Britain now covered by the government’s furlough scheme, right through to October, there’s much to learn from an 18th century proto-Keynesian successful state intervention from north India. It was launched by the Nawab of Awadh, Asaf-ud Daula in 1784, when famine hit the region. Awadh was a wealthy kingdom in … Continue reading “UK furlough scheme could learn from 18th century proto-Keynesian state intervention in India”

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A world of Zoombies: What it means, really

by Rashmee

Posted on May 16, 2020


In the past 24 hours, I have been on three Zoom calls. The first on Friday night was with good friends, calling with birthday wishes. The second and third, on Saturday, were with disparate groups of family members, similarly reaching out across the lockdown with loving virtual hugs and kisses. The Friday night call ran … Continue reading “A world of Zoombies: What it means, really”

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‘Sell city, buy country’? The pandemic won’t empty London, NYC

by Rashmee

Posted on May 14, 2020


Some very clever people are writing off cities. Not altogether, but quite substantially. Consider a new piece in Politico magazine by Parag Khanna, bestselling author and managing partner of the data and scenario-based strategic global advisory firm FutureMap. The pandemic “may cause fundamental shifts in our human geography,” Mr Khanna writes. “Why choose to stay in a … Continue reading “‘Sell city, buy country’? The pandemic won’t empty London, NYC”

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An Open Letter to the West: About toilet paper and other matters

by Rashmee

Posted on April 2, 2020


  Dear Brothers and Sisters Born in the West In these extraordinary and difficult times, do you know what’s reassuringly familiar? Your panic about toilet paper. The last one that made headlines (and for much scratching of heads) was the American TP panic of 1973. Now that was the year of the oil shock and … Continue reading “An Open Letter to the West: About toilet paper and other matters”

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Plato used the image of the political leader as a doctor. That is particularly true in a pandemic

by Rashmee

Posted on March 31, 2020


Taiwan’s remarkably effective response to the coronavirus pandemic is thought to be in some measure because it’s lucky enough to have an epidemiologist as vice president. (Click here for my blog from last week.) Technically speaking, the European Union should have the same advantage. After all, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen, is a … Continue reading “Plato used the image of the political leader as a doctor. That is particularly true in a pandemic”

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To be great, India and the US have to be good – part II

by Rashmee

Posted on March 7, 2020


  I’m returning to a subject that has long preoccupied me. Both India, country of my birth, and the US, my adoptive country, must be good to be great. It is not enough to remind the world that India produced Mahatma Gandhi and that the US has exemplified rule of law and the separation of … Continue reading “To be great, India and the US have to be good – part II”

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With Donald Trump’s visit, US-India chemistry can no longer be dismissed as fiction

by Rashmee

Posted on February 25, 2020 / The National


There were bespoke broccoli samosas in Ahmedabad in western India; a watermelon carved with the faces of Donald Trump and Narendra Modi in Theni in southern India; sand art featuring Mr Trump and his wife Melania on Puri beach in eastern India and the “Trump collection” of specially designed gold and silver-plated tableware in Delhi … Continue reading “With Donald Trump’s visit, US-India chemistry can no longer be dismissed as fiction”

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India vs Bangladesh. Bigger is not always better

by Rashmee

Posted on February 17, 2020


    Indian TV anchor Karan Thapar made a fascinating case the other day for big countries to show a bit of humility. Ok, he didn’t really say that all big countries should be more humble. Just India. About Bangladesh. Rather than believing Henry Kissinger’s 1970s’ guff that Bangladesh is “an international basket case”, India … Continue reading “India vs Bangladesh. Bigger is not always better”

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British Columbia’s ‘first Indian-Chinese restaurant’ proudly serves up desi fare

by Rashmee

Posted on January 31, 2020


  The sign outside the Green Lettuce, on Kingsway in eastern Vancouver, says it all: “Desi Chinese”. (Look to the far right on the red strip under the yellow shop sign.) Extraordinary, I thought. In India, where all the Chinese food on offer is “Indian Chinese”, they don’t describe it that way. But they’re doing … Continue reading “British Columbia’s ‘first Indian-Chinese restaurant’ proudly serves up desi fare”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK