Prof Gopal Guru, Editor of the famous journal Economic & Political Weekly (EPW) and former Professor at JNU, chaired the session- Distinguished Lecture #WebPolicyTalk on Socio-Economic Impact of Coronavirus Pandemic in India by Prof Arun Kumar, one of India’s most eminent economist, organized by Impact and Policy Research Institute (IMPRI), New Delhi held on October 7, 2020.
During his concluding remarks for the discussion, Prof. Gopal Guru, recommended the direction towards which IMPRI should focus on. The kind of language we use while evaluating the impact of a pandemic is the foremost question we should currently focus on, especially pertaining to the demand and supply scenario.
He said that there is an inherent contradiction between demand and supply as supply always focused on giving something. The supply side has two languages- patronage and entitlements/rights. In contrast, demand has involved the usage of normative language because demand guarantees us a sense of dignity. However, the demands have to reasonable and achievable.
He also raised an important point that with the help of policy incentives and intervention we now have to focus on the “reshuffling of language” vis-à-vis to the reshuffling of funds, owing to the rich deep-rooted economic theories which Indian scholars are well versed with.
To conclude, he opined that this pandemic has given us an excellent opportunity to make a distinction between the kind of “language” we will produce while contradicting demand and supply. Prof. Guru even said that COVID-19 has offered us an opportunity to distinguish between the demand and supply as well as produce and create some of the brilliant ideas in terms of innovation.