Thoughts on the Future, Reflections on the Past

MUMBAI, 22 February 2017- At the Nehru Center, a room full of eager spectators gathered to watch a riveting rapport between former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram and several distinguished commentators on Indian political, economic, and social issues. Joining Mr. Chidambaram were Vikram Mehta Singh, Director of Brookings Institute India, Ajit Ranade, an analyst of economic and policy questions, and Menaka Doshi, Managing Editor of BloombergQuint.

The night began with Mr. Chidambaram giving opening remarks on some of the most contentious issues of contemporary Indian politics, making his case for the necessity of a strong opposition voice and criticizing the recent policy of demonetization. Using the remarks as a springboard, the panel engaged in a dialogue over everything from demonetization to the need to create jobs for rural youth.

The panel used the dialogue as an opportunity to offer alternative perspectives to some of Mr. Chidambaram’s insights or and push back against some of his arguments with meritorious cases of their own, creating a vibrant and intellectually stimulating atmosphere of competing ideas. The audience also had ample time to ask Mr. Chidambaram questions of their own in a Q&A session. 

Reported by: Brian L Osgood, Programme Assistant Intern, Asia Society India Centre