Carbon Tracker Report
This new report from Carbon Tracker "coal power economics portal" can be very useful to draw the attention of the policy makers, bureaucrats and politicians in India on the enormous risks being thrust on communities because of the continued policy of fossil fuel based energy policy.

Though the direct/indirect costs, overall economics and societal-level risks of the operating/new coal power plants have different magnitudes in different countries, they all are relevant to every country, and are particularly heavy for India, with its low calorific value domestic coal, lax environmental laws, poor inefficiency, corruption ridden governance mechanisms, densely populated communities, and fast depleting natural resources. Such a global perspective of costs/economics of coal power plants, as can be seen in the compilation of the associated costs of nearly 6,700 coal power units across the world, as in this report, can be of huge global relevance in arresting the run-away Climate Change.

Let us hope the summary of this and other similar reports in recent weeks, which are getting published with increasing frequency, will persuade the concerned authorities to call an end to the dirty coal at an early date. The bureaucrats and politicians in India should understand the enormity of the poor coal economics to communities, and take urgent necessary action.
Shankar Sharma,
Vijaynagar, Karnataka

Farm Loan Waiver
The Congress promised in its 'Vachan Patra' on the eve of Madhya Pradesh Assembly Election, 2018 that it would waive farm (crop) loan if it comes into the power after the election. It was a provocation as well as reinforcement to the voters of Madhya Pradesh to cast their vote in favour of the Congress Party. That has meant one vote for Rs 2 lakh. It was a very simple equation to win the voter's mandate. There was no political wisdom within this. The result was obvious. The Congress won and it immediately declared to waive the loan of estimated 34 lakh farmers amounting to Rs 35,000 crore to Rs 38,000 crore.

The above incident might be explained in terms of emotional opportunity structures (EOS). Opportunity Structures 'broadly refer to movements of external social and political circumstances in explaining why movements (can) emerge in the first place'.

Insecurity and anxiety in a society plagued by an economic downturn and unemployment are obvious examples, as would be envy and shame in a society that promotes constant social comparison. Thus emotion triggers the "demand" side of populism. EOS highlights the Connection between structural conditions and changes in a society and their likely emotional consequences, which the notion of "demand" alone does not explicate. Second, EOS are constituted and maintained by social and cultural processes that render (certain) emotions more visible, desirable, and acceptable than others. Populist movements and parties can be particularly adept at tapping into new emotional opportunities like farm loan waiver that emerge in new structural conditions and from their mismatch with existing emotional cultures.

For next election what would be the issues to the Congress and its opponent. Does the EOS turn into new focus? What would be the future of India and its residents?
Harasankar Adhikarim, Kolkata

Vol. 51, No.27, Jan 6 - 12, 2019