The Indian state has hitched the wagon of the country’s development to the engine of the nation’s big capital, perhaps like no other time in India’s history. Big private capital today not only occupies the commanding heights of the Indian economy, but also the imagination of  the ruling elite and even that of the popular classes. The pinnacle of this development is epitomized by the stupendous growth and reach of the Indian telecom sector. The ruling elite rests their case of claiming ultimate success by citing the ubiquitous presence of cell phones in almost every hand in India, which are promoted with some of the cheapest device and connectivity rates in the world. What lies behind this success? In this talk, our speaker will unpack the success of the telecom industry in India, and through the telecom example, examine the nature of the Indian big capital and the role of the Indian state.

Our speaker is Rahul Varman. He is in the faculty in  the department of Management at The Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur, India. He has organized and works with the contract workers on the campus, which number around 2,500. These are the most exploited and oppressed of the Indian working classes and come from both local and far off areas of the country.