A History of Economic Policy in India : Crisis, Coalitions, and Contingency

Cambridge University Press,


Economic Policy in Independent India provides an immersive, accessible yet rigorous understanding of the Indian economy through a political economy analysis of economic policies. It provides a birds-eye view of the politics, context, and ideas that shaped major economic policies in independent India and argues that they are the product of crisis, coalitions, and contingency — not necessarily choice. Each chapter focuses on specific political regimes: Colonial Rule, Jawahar Lal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, liberalisation under coalition governments, the UPA Government, and the NDA Government. The book evaluates how well a government executed its policies based on the economic and political constraints it faced, rather than economic outcomes. Using theories to make sense of the economy, political ideology, historical conditions, and international context, the book’s framework provides multiple perspectives and analyses economic policies as an outcome of interactions between dynamics in the economy.