Need for Introducing a Separate Symbol for Dairy Products

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In India, the food labeling policy is regulated by the Food Safety And Standards (Packaging And Labelling) Regulations, 2011. The Regulations provide that there should be a distinct declaration on the pre-packaged foods about their vegetarian (through green dot) or non-vegetarian (through brown dots) content in the form of visible marks. The regulations classify any food article that is not ‘non-vegetarian’ as ‘vegetarian’. In doing so, they exclude animal-derived milk or milk products (commonly referred to as dairy products) from the scope of the non-vegetarian food category. Therefore, presently, for any consumer purchasing food products in India, it is nearly impossible to distinguish dairy products from vegetarian products. The problem with the policy of categorizing dairy products as vegetarian lies in the fact that dairy products are not plant-derivatives but derivatives of milk which is a product obtained through milch animals such as cows and buffaloes. (more…)

A much needed rehaul for India’s Agricultural Policies?

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On 27th September 2020, the Government of India brought in the Farmers’ Produce and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020 (hereinafter, referred to as the Act) which introduced a pivotal change in India’s agricultural policies. The Act, essentially, aims to provide freedom of choice to the farmers and traders in selling and purchasing farmers’ produce through alternative trading channels and increasing competition in the market. Thus, it allows for barrier-free trade of farmers’ produce outside the physical premises of the markets notified under the various State Agricultural Produce Marketing Committee laws (APMC laws).  (more…)

Women in the Informal Sector: A Saga of Constraints and Vulnerabilities

The advent of globalization and marketization has resulted in an emergent trend towards the ‘informalisation’ of the labor market. Policymakers have identified the income-generation potential and the significance of the informal sector as a source of jobs in adverse economic crises. However, the phenomena of globalization and the work sphere cannot be disassociated from their gendered power relations. Developing countries like India, with a concomitant rise in informal employment, reveal an increasing number of women joining this sector, but mostly remaining “invisible” as they continue to work in low paid, low-status jobs in the informal sector; jobs which do not have any possibilities of betterment”. Studies suggest that 94% of women are a part of the informal sector, out of which approximately 50% perform functions in addition to their productive roles. These women are further confronted with constraints by their engendered role, wherein they’re additionally burdened with domestic responsibilities. Social connotations like these significantly contribute to the overall conceptualization of economic development.  (more…)

Rehabilitation of Women and Girls during the Pandemic

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On 31st August 2020, an SC order sought to clear the slums around railway tracks in Delhi within three months, without any policy for rehabilitation. As concerns were being raised on the procedure to be followed in this regard, in another order dated 14th September, 2020, the Court instructed the authorities to devise a proper policy for the rehabilitation of the affected population before their eviction from the current place of residence. The SC however, did not recognize the fact that the brunt of unplanned eviction exercises has been found especially disadvantageous for women and girls.  (more…)

Role of media in policy

Role of Media in Policymaking

Media as Quintessence of Democracy

Labeled as the “fourth estate” in democratic societies, the media possesses a distinctive capability to influence and shape government policies. Normatively ascribed the role of a “watchdog” with a capacity to contribute to institutional change, the media holds the political elite accountable, reflects the needs of the audience, and exposes transgressions of the power holders within the democratic system. Its role thus in influencing matters related to legislation and government policies is crucial and should not be overlooked. (more…)