India’s Dance with Democracy - Panel 2

Event time: 
Thursday, April 18, 2024 - 5:30pm to 6:30pm
Henry R. Luce Hall (LUCE ), 202 See map
34 Hillhouse Avenue
New Haven, CT 06511
Event description: 

India Votes: Issues Before Electorate and Why Results Matter

This is the second panel of a two-part series moderated by Sushant Singh featuring Ravi Agrawal, Devesh Kapur, and Neeti Nair.

This panel considers the various issues that are on the agenda before the electorate, ranging from caste survey and Ram temple to China border crisis and Manipur violence. Economic issues, particularly joblessness and high inflation, always figure on the radar of the voter but may not get directly reflected in their electoral choices even in 2024 general elections. Issues of gender, caste, religion and class, along with the role of the media in covering and informing the people about them will be examined by this panel.

Irrespective of the issues under consideration, the results of the 2024 Indian parliamentary polls will have far-reaching consequences. They could fix or derail the country’s democratic journey, affecting the lives and livelihoods of 1.4 billion Indians. It will make and mar the career of various political leaders. The future of many political parties itself hangs in balance and the emerging ideological influences on India’s power structures could end affecting the region and the world. This panel concludes by discussing the numerous implications of these elections and gazes into the crystal ball to examine the mirror it holds into today’s India.

Speaker Bios:

Ravi Agrawal is the Editor in Chief of Foreign Policy and author of India Connected: How the Smartphone Is Transforming the World’s Largest Democracy. Before joining Foreign Policy, Agrawal worked at CNN for 11 years in London, New York, and New Delhi, including a four-year stint as South Asia bureau chief.

Devesh Kapur is the Starr Foundation South Asia Studies Professor and Asia Programs Director at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University, Washington, D.C. His research focuses on human capital, national and international public institutions, and the ways in which local-global linkages, especially international migration and international institutions, affect political and economic change in developing countries, especially India.

Neeti Nair is professor of history at the University of Virginian and a non-residential Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC. Her research and teaching interests span Modern South Asia, the partition of India, India-Pakistan-Bangladesh relations, foreign policy, education policy, memory studies, legal history, and oral history.

Sushant Singh is a lecturer at Yale University and a senior fellow at the Centre for Policy Research in India. He was the deputy editor of the Indian Express, reporting on strategic affairs, national security, and international affairs, and previously served in the Indian army for two decades. A writer-journalist, he is the founder of The India Cable and his byline has recently appeared in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The Hindu and The Caravan, among other publications. He was earlier the Deputy Editor of The Indian Express newspaper in India where he covered international affairs and national security.