It's only Saturday and... (more) Khatakhat Is Coming!

Anmol Jain

Jun 29, 2024, 06:46 AM | Updated 07:21 AM IST

Here's your curated weekend read

New issue out
New issue out

Dear Reader,

"Khatakhat Is Coming!"

It's just what we're calling this weekend's curated read focusing on a cycle of competitive freebies that we're entering.

From free electricity to free bus rides to direct cash transfers, the 'Khatakat' brand of politics is fast becoming the new normal. Should this worry us? It should alarm any right-thinking Indian (ignore the Left and the wrong please).

This weekender's cover stories should be enough to impress upon us the seriousness of this fiscal imprudence.

The Mahayuti-led Maharashtra government is coming out with its own version of MP's 'Laadli Behna' scheme. With a drubbing that it saw in the Lok Sabha polls, the ruling coalition does not want to take any chances with state assembly elections scheduled later this year.

But at what cost?

We're already witnessing how Karnataka's Congress government is struggling to keep up its promise of 'Five Guarantees'. So much so that it has resorted to fuel price hikes, monetising of government land worth Rs 25000 crores, and hiring BCG as a consultant to find ways to fulfil the unviable guarantees.

Won't be wrong to call it the 'Khatakhat Tax'.

This is even more worrisome because "people always want more" — this is what Venu Gopal Narayanan stresses in his piece arguing that BJP came up against the limits of "Labharthi" votes in the 2024 elections.

  • And even a party like the BJP, known for its fiscal prudence, is driving straight into this quagmire forgetting that "political parties aren't FMCG brands".

This is a vicious cycle with no end in sight.

However, what is sorted at present is your weekend. As promised we've taken up the task of freeing you from the endless digital clutter, by bringing you this week's best news, analysis, and reportage.

Apart from the above stories, this issue covers:

  • the internal crisis brewing in Shiromani Akali Dal,

  • why BJP has chances at winning the Palakkad by-poll in Kerala,

  • how an otherwise welcome Current Account surplus may be hiding worrying signs, and a lot more!

You can read this digital issue on the web, Swarajya's app, or download the PDF here to read it anywhere, anytime. Last week's edition is here, just in case.

Also, feel free to share any feedback—constructive or otherwise—by simply replying to this email.

Happy monsoons! Have a great weekend!

Anmol N Jain

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