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The Ganatantra podcast is about politics in India, but steering clear of intrigue and personalities, and the everyday news cycle. Join political science thinker Dr Sarayu Natarajan, the founder of Aapti Institute, a think tank which looks at issues of technology and policy; and policy lawyer Alok Prasanna Kumar, Senior Resident Fellow at the Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy in Bengaluru, as we bring data, academic works and nuanced perspectives into understanding how politics in India works, apart from identifying and making sense of the broader trends taking place.

The Ganatantra podcast is about politics in India, but steering clear of intrigue and personalities, and the everyday news cycle. Join political science thinker Dr Sarayu Natarajan, the founder of Aapti Institute, a think tank which looks at issues of technology and policy; and policy lawyer Alok Prasanna Kumar, Senior Resident Fellow at the Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy in Bengaluru, as we bring data, academic works and nuanced perspectives into understanding how politics in India works, apart from identifying and making sense of the broader trends taking place.
More Information

Location:

India

Description:

The Ganatantra podcast is about politics in India, but steering clear of intrigue and personalities, and the everyday news cycle. Join political science thinker Dr Sarayu Natarajan, the founder of Aapti Institute, a think tank which looks at issues of technology and policy; and policy lawyer Alok Prasanna Kumar, Senior Resident Fellow at the Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy in Bengaluru, as we bring data, academic works and nuanced perspectives into understanding how politics in India works, apart from identifying and making sense of the broader trends taking place.

Twitter:

@IVMPodcasts

Language:

English


Episodes

Ep. 15: Exit Polls and Surveys : Accuracy and Transparency (with Sanjay Kumar)

5/16/2019
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In a couple of days, discussions about the 2019 General elections will hinge on the release of exit poll numbers put up by various survey and media agencies. We explore what it takes to go from a good track record in calculating vote shares to problems in predicting how many seats a party will win. Why do opinion and exit polls struggle in India? Is it just a matter of resources, the complexity of the first-past-the-post-system in a diverse country, or the difficulty in integrating social...

Duration:00:43:15

Ep. 14: Haryana - Caste competition and conflict (feat. Ankur Bhardwaj)

5/9/2019
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In this episode, we are joined by Ankur Bhardwaj, Senior Editor at Business Standard to talk about the State of Haryana which goes to the polls in the 6th phase of polling. Assembly elections are also scheduled a few months after Lok Sabha polls suggesting that both could be impacted by the same trends and patterns. While the Jat community has dominated politics in the state of Haryana, the inter-caste violence that broke out in 2016 over reservation and many other issues exposed the...

Duration:00:34:12

Ep. 13: West Bengal: Polarization and Mobilization (feat Shoaib Daniyal)

5/4/2019
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In this episode, we are joined by Shoaib Daniyal of Scroll.in’s team to talk about politics in West Bengal and learn about how the BJP is mobilising in this critical state that goes to polls tomorrow. We learn about the trajectory of left politics in Bengal and its entrenchment, and then its gradual dissipation. We learn about the rise of the Trinamool, and now the right. The BJP seems to be gaining from the Left strongholds, building on disillusionment to implant a macho, pan-Hindu...

Duration:00:52:21

Ep. 12: Anti-incumbency at the State and Centre (feat. Roshan Kishore)

4/28/2019
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Contrary to popular perception, Rajasthan is a diverse state which features everything from well irrigated agricultural regions to deserts, large urban centres, to a significant tribal belt along the border with Gujarat. It was also the state where it was possibly the "Modi wave" began in 2013 leading to the eventual clean sweep of the State by the Bharatiya Janata Party in the 2014 elections. In that context, what should we make of the Congress' victory in the Vidhan Sabha elections in...

Duration:00:28:18

Ep. 11: Gujarat: Jobless growth, marginalization and caste mobilization (with Aarefa Johari)

4/22/2019
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Gujarat goes to the polls in the third phase of elections. In the last five years it has seen economic upheaval as a result of demonetisation and implementation of the GST. It has also seen mass agitation by Patidars and Dalits over reservations and atrocities respectively, and a resurgence of the Congress in the last Assembly elections. What are the issues on voters' minds this time? Will the economic downturn and agricultural distress play a role in determining the outcome? We're joined...

Duration:00:37:04

Ep. 10: Assam and North East: NRC and sub-nationalism (feat. Kham Khan Suan Hausing)

4/16/2019
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As parts of Assam and the North Eastern states of India go to the polls we take this opportunity to discuss some of the issues which have caused much discussion, debate and anxiety in the region. Specifically the implementation of the National Register of Citizens in Assam and the proposed introduction of the Citizenship Amendment Bill which aims to give accelerated citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Muslim majority countries around India. We are joined by Dr Suan to understand the...

Duration:00:51:08

Ep. 09: Telangana & Andhra Pradesh - Welfare, Caste and Regional aspirations (feat. KK Kailash)

4/9/2019
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India's newest state goes to the polls tomorrow in the first phase of polls alongside its "parent" state. Though Telangana and Andhra Pradesh were once the same state, their political trajectories have been very different and likewise the socio - economic concerns. In this episode we are joined by KK Kailash to discuss the evolution of politics in the two states, attempting to understand the policies of the Telangana Rashtra Samiti, the appeal of Pawan Kalyan's Jana Sena and the difference...

Duration:00:47:55

Ep. 08: General Elections 2019: What's on the minds of voters and candidates (feat. Astha Kapoor)

4/7/2019
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Starting this week we hope to discuss important themes and issues that might inform how voters choose and how parties reach out to voters in the upcoming elections. Before each phase of election, we will pick one state going to the polls and break down the political issues and trends in that state. Each episode will feature an expert who has studied the state for decades to offer in depth insight on the state we're discussing. In this introductory episode, we break down the major issues...

Duration:01:04:18

Ep. 07: The Politics of Land ownership in India (featuring Raksha Kumar)

4/2/2019
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Concerns about land and land rights have been key political issues from the beginning of the republic. Even as India urbanizes, these issues have not receded but taken new forms and new dimensions. Issues of land acquisition and redistribution, and forest rights have prompted mobilization in the recent past. How do we understand these movements and what are peoples relationships with land? To answer these questions and more, we have independent journalist Raksha Kumar join us for a...

Duration:00:40:17

Ep. 06: Indira Gandhi, Welfare and Politics (feat. Dr. Diego Maiorano)

3/26/2019
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In this episode we speak to Dr. Diego Maiorano, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the National University of Singapore about two fascinating topics. First - we ask him about his book Autumn of the Matriarch: Indira Gandhi's Final Term in Office which examines Indira Gandhi's last term in office, and the political and social implications of her last term. We also ask about the residues of her politics in contemporary India. Second, we touch upon Diego's current work on the NREGA program, and...

Duration:00:52:00

Ep. 05: Women's representation in politics (feat. Shruthi Viswanathan)

3/19/2019
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There has been a long standing demand for reservations in legislatures in India for women. Currently, fifty percent of positions in panchayati raj institutions are reserved for women. If women's issues are to come to the fore in politics, is increased representation the only way forward? What has been the experience of countries where women have greater representation in political institutions? Have they had an impact on the patriarchal nature of the society? Shruthi Viswanathan, Governance...

Duration:00:36:28

Ep. 04: Social Media and Political Parties (with Venkat Ananth)

3/12/2019
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What is the landscape of social media in India? How are political parties using social media to cement narratives and organise voters? What are different types of media? And what is different from broadcast media? In this episode, we talk to Venkat Ananth, Senior Assistant Editor at the Economic Times to unpack these questions. Venkat is based out of Bengaluru and writes in-depth stories on technology and policy. He puts into context the increasing use of social media by political parties,...

Duration:00:45:27

Ep. 03: Political Violence & Riots

2/26/2019
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Does promoting violence give political parties in India electoral gains? Steven Wilkinson's book "Votes and Violence: Electoral Competition and Ethnic Riots in India" seems to suggest so, looking at electoral data. While Wilkinson looks primarily at ethnic riots, political violence is expressed in other methods as well, for the same ends of polarization but at a lesser "cost". In this episode, Sarayu and Alok unpack how political violence works in India and why the absence of large scale...

Duration:00:18:52

Ep. 02: Farmers Mobilization & Agricultural Distress in India

2/12/2019
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Why are farmers in India mobilizing and agitating? What are the politics behind the waiver of 'Farm Loans' by State Governments across the country? In this episode, Sarayu and Alok go in depth into the economic and political causes for rural distress in India, talking about why we have seen farmer mobilizations in Mumbai and Delhi and the political calculus that goes into some of the measures that are seen as "pro-farmer", perhaps how even mobilization by farmers may be hiding more issues...

Duration:00:27:19

Ep. 01: Understanding Indian politics

1/29/2019
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How can we understand how to understand Indian politics? In this debut episode, we (Alok and Sarayu) talk about what this podcast will be about - we explore how and why politics is not just about elections (but also what happens in between), how politics is not just about intrigue and personalities, and why it is important to look at the big picture. We also explore how policies that drive change can be political and what the Government is trying to do with such policies. We will tell you a...

Duration:00:15:53

Ep. 00: Introduction to Ganatantra

1/23/2019
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The Ganatantra podcast is about politics in India, but steering clear of intrigue and personalities, and the everyday news cycle. Join political science thinker Dr Sarayu Natarajan, the founder of Aapti Institute, a think tank which looks at issues of technology and policy; and policy lawyer Alok Prasanna Kumar, Senior Resident Fellow at the Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy in Bengaluru, as we bring data, academic works and nuanced perspectives into understanding how politics in India works,...

Duration:00:01:22