About the Author:
Milan Vaishnav is a Senior Fellow in the South Asia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. His primary research focus is the political economy of India, and he examines issues such as corruption and governance, state capacity, distributive politics, and electoral behavior.
He is the author of When Crime Pays: Money and Muscle in Indian Politics (Yale University Press and HarperCollins India, 2017) and co-editor (with Pratap Bhanu Mehta and Devesh Kapur) of the forthcoming book Rethinking Public Institutions in India (Oxford University Press, 2017). His work has also been published in scholarly journals such as India Review, India Policy Forum, and Latin American Research Review. He is a regular contributor to several Indian publications.
Previously, he worked at the Center for Global Development, where he served as a postdoctoral research fellow, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the Council on Foreign Relations. He has taught at Columbia, Georgetown, and George Washington Universities. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University.
About the Book:
When Crime Pays: Money and Muscle in Indian Politics
The first comprehensive study of the nexus between crime and democracy in India.
In India, the world’s largest democracy, the symbiotic relationship between crime and politics raises complex questions. For instance, how can free and fair democratic elections exist alongside rampant criminality? Why do political parties actively recruit candidates with reputations for wrongdoing? Why do voters elect (and even reelect) them, to the point that a third of state and national legislators assume office with pending criminal charges?
In this eye-opening book, political scientist Milan Vaishnav takes readers deep into the marketplace for criminal politicians by drawing on fieldwork on the campaign trail, large surveys, and an original database on politicians’ backgrounds. The result is the first systematic study of an issue that has profound implications for democracy both with and beyond India’s borders.