Quoted in Forbes series on Demonetization again

Thanks to Wade Shepard, i was quoted in the Forbes series on Demonetization again.

As Monishankar Prasad, a New Delhi-based author who is currently traveling India researching the on-the-ground impact of the demonetization phenomenon pointed out:

The unbanked and informal economy is hard hit. The poor do not have the access to structural and cultural resources to adapt to shock doctrine economics. The poor were taken totally off guard and the banking infrastructure in the hinterland is rather limited. The tech class has poor exposure to critical social theory in order to understand the impact on the ground. There is an empathy deficit.

“In the long run, this is nothing short of a revolutionary measure in moving a traditional cash centric economy to a fourth industrial revolution era. It’s audacious, brash, and a future-centered decision, which has changed India, its people, politics, and money game forever,” Prasad declared. “India will be ‘before demonetization’ and ‘after demonetization,’ BD and AD.”

However, there are obviously still many cogs in the works before India can truly depend on its digital financial infrastructure, as Prasad discovered during his travels:

India is lived in the hinterland. Even when the card terminals are available, the telephone lines are not robust enough, as they are prone to weather centric disruption. The pharmacy today, in North Kolkata- Laketown, the card machine was out of order, the e-wallet application was working after four false attempts. The area has four pharmacies as it is around a prominent medical center, and only one had a non-cash option. In short, the transition is far from complete.

The link :


I am also working on a longer read on the lived experience of Demonetization and the frictions at the intersection of social justice, technology and governance.

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