Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic : Being Neighbourly

 GS-2 Mains Exam : IR

Revision Notes




Note: Today’s editorials are solely for informational updates; direct questions cannot be formulated

India’s swearing-in ceremony for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s third term highlighted its “Neighbourhood First” policy. This policy prioritizes building strong relations with neighboring countries, aiming for:

  • Improved Connectivity: This includes physical infrastructure (roads, railways), digital connections, and fostering closer cultural ties between people.
  • Booming Trade: The policy seeks to increase trade and economic cooperation within the region.

However, despite this focus, India faces significant challenges in its neighbourhood:

  • Recurring Issues: The region experiences frequent instability and crises, hindering progress.
  • Strained Relations with Pakistan: The absence of Pakistani leadership at the ceremony reflects ongoing difficulties in normalizing ties. While back channels might be open, progress on talks remains elusive.
  • China’s Growing Influence: China’s growing power in the region presents a bigger challenge. An upcoming meeting between PM Modi and China’s President Xi Jinping offers a potential opportunity, but China’s reaction to BJP’s reduced majority suggests caution. They might see a weaker India as easier to dominate.

The West’s View

  • The West, in contrast to China, sees a stronger opposition in India as a positive sign for democracy.
  • Geo-economic and geopolitical factors were pushing India and the West closer, but concerns about democratic backsliding in India created friction.
  • A more competitive Indian political landscape could lead to renewed cooperation between India, the West, and its Asian allies.


India needs strong relationships with all sides to navigate a complex world with intensifying major power conflicts and a restructuring global order.




Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic : The message from rural India

 GS-3 Mains Exam : Economy

Revision Notes

Analysing BJP’s Decline in Popularity

Simplistic View on Factor Responsible for BJP’s Loss

  • Hard to decipher: Influence of factors like constitutional changes, social issues, economic concerns, and welfare program promises.
  • Constituency analysis: Focus on where BJP lost most.
  • Rural decline: BJP’s tally in rural-dominated constituencies dropped from 253 in 2019 to 193 in 2024, a loss of 60 out of 63 seats.
  • Message from rural India: Indicates strong discontent.
  • Lessons for all: Insights for the new government and those who lost.

Rural India’s Economic Challenges

  • Low income: Two-thirds of India’s population in rural areas, with a monthly expenditure of ₹3,773 per capita (NSO 2022-23), translating to an average family income of around ₹20,000 per month.
  • Stagnant wages: Real wage growth in rural areas stagnated or declined during Modi’s second term.
  • Uneven income distribution: Income levels vary within rural areas; agricultural households earn less than average.
  • Government initiatives: Implementation of schemes for rural development (toilets, housing, water supply, roads, electricity).
  • Limited impact: Despite initiatives, rural income levels remain low, reflecting a struggling rural economy.

Challenges in Indian Agriculture

  • Slow growth: Agricultural GDP growth was 1.4% in 2023-24 (FY24).
  • Lagging behind overall economy: Overall GDP growth was 8.2% in FY24, highlighting a significant disparity.
  • Impact on workers: 45.8% of the workforce is employed in agriculture; slow growth affects their well-being.
  • Limited effectiveness of free food programs: Temporary relief from free grains, but does not improve substantial income levels.


Way Forward for Political Parties

1. Massive Program for Rural Infrastructure, Skill Development, and Employment

  • Agriculture dependency: High number of people reliant on agriculture.
  • Higher productivity jobs: Need to transition to non-farm jobs with higher productivity.
  • Rural infrastructure: Employment opportunities within rural areas to build infrastructure.
  • Urban development: Opportunities outside rural economy to develop urban areas.
  • Skill formation: Massive investment needed in skill development for higher productivity jobs.
  • Industry involvement: Industry participation required to train people for meaningful employment.

2. Robust Strategy for High-Value Farm Production

  • Shift in focus: Move from basic staples (especially rice) to high-value agriculture like poultry, fishery, dairy, and fruits and vegetables.
  • Perishable goods: High-value agriculture requires efficient logistics in a value chain approach (e.g., AMUL model for milk).
  • Government strategy: New government needs to develop a robust strategy for high-value agriculture.

3. Investment in Climate-Smart Agriculture

  • Climate change impact: Increasing extreme weather events due to climate change (heat waves, flash floods).
  • Climate-smart agriculture: Significant investment needed, including agrivoltaics (solar energy as a third “crop” for farmers).
  • Regular income: Agrivoltaics can provide regular monthly income even during crop failures due to droughts or floods.


  • Performance analysis: Political parties must analyze their performance in the recent elections.
  • Rural distress: Major factor influencing the success and failure of political parties.
  • Beyond freebies: Government and opposition must recognize that rural populations need more than just freebies.
  • Policy changes: Government must implement far-reaching changes in agriculture, increase farm incomes, and adjust priorities accordingly.

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