India is in danger of mutating into a republic of both hate and fear. Each feeds on the other. All those who defend the idea of India as a humane, pluralist, rational and inclusive society are also bullied into fear and silence by mobs, online and on the streets.
Some commentators expected that the Union Budget 2017-’18 would craft a sharp departure from earlier budgets of this government. This it would do to mitigate the immense suffering of millions of casual workers, farmers and small traders caused by the “shock and awe” of the astoundingly