Understanding Contemporary Indian Federalism: Competing Perspectives, New Challenges and Future Directions, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Understanding Contemporary Indian Federalism

Competing Perspectives, New Challenges and Future Directions, 1st Edition

Edited by Chanchal Kumar Sharma, Wilfried Swenden


184 pages

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Hardback: 9780815366171
pub: 2017-12-12

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This volume analyzes centre-state dynamics in India placed against the backdrop of the election of a Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata (BJP) government to central power in 2014. It reflects on how centre-state relations have been shaped by the legacy of nearly two decades of broad-based coalition government at the centre and the concurrent and ongoing liberalization of the Indian economy. To this purpose, the volume engages with several relevant questions linked to the political economy of Indian federalism and its ability to manage ethno-linguistic difference. Did liberalization strengthen the economic or political autonomy of the Indian states? What impact did party system change have on the capacity of parties in central government to influence the actions of state governments? How did party system change and liberalization influence the fiscal and financial autonomy of the states and the capacity of the centre in planning and social development? Did both processes strengthen the autonomy of Chief Ministers in foreign policy-making? What are the strengths and weaknesses of Indian federalism in ethno-linguistic conflict management and what do the recent split of Andhra Pradesh or the proposed formation of Bodoland tell us about the dynamics underpinning the management of ethno-linguistic difference in contemporary India? The chapters originally published as a special issue of India Review.

Table of Contents

1. Continuity and change in contemporary Indian federalism

Chanchal Kumar Sharma and Wilfried Swenden

2. A situational theory of pork-barrel politics: The shifting logic of discretionary allocations in India

Chanchal Kumar Sharma

3. Rethinking central planning: A federal critique of the Planning Commission

Wilfried Swenden and Rekha Saxena

4. Continuity and change in Indian fiscal federalism

Indira Rajaraman

5. States as laboratories: The politics of social welfare policies in India

Rajeshwari Deshpande, K. K. Kailash, and Louise Tillin

6. Paradiplomacy of India’s chief ministers

Andrew Wyatt

7. Does ethnofederalism explain the success of Indian federalism?

Katharine Adeney

8. Indian federalism at the crossroads: Limits of the territorial management of ethnic conflict

Harihar Bhattacharyya, Kham Khan Suan Hausing, and Jhumpa Mukherjee

About the Editors

Chanchal Kumar Sharma is Senior Faculty at the Department of Political Science, Central University of Haryana, India; Associate Research Fellow at the German Institute of Global and Area Studies (GIGA) in Hamburg and Fellow at the Centre for Multilevel Federalism, Institute of Social Sciences, Delhi, India.

Wilfried Swenden is Senior Lecturer in the School of Social and Political Science and Co-Director of the Centre for South Asian Studies at the University of Edinburgh, UK, and Managing Editor of Regional and Federal Studies.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General