Nitin Sethi

Nitin is a journalist, the Media Lead at the National Foundation for India and a Partner and Editorial Advisor at Land Conflict Watch. He has written, reported and investigated for two decades on the intersections of India's political economy, natural resources, environment, climate change, economy, public finance and development. His reportage has won several awards, including the Asian College of Journalism's award for investigative journalism and the Prem Bhatia award for environmental journalism. He has previously worked in editorial positions at The Business Standard,, The Hindu, The Times of India and Down To Earth.


May 15, 2020

Flawed Covid-19 Database Used To Ease Lockdown

The Centre’s ‘single source of truth’ in easing lockdowns is a database of Covid-19 cases ridden with unverified data, duplicate names and other flaws. States, some protesting at the confusion, use another database and only in five states do the two databases tally

May 14, 2020

Cases Surged In Lockdown As Govt Ignored Experts

In the first week of April 2020, the government’s top scientists laid out conditions for lifting the Covid-19 lockdown. The government ignored that advice and evolved its own criteria, still unclear to states. The result is a surge in cases and ever-changing criteria

April 24, 2020

Frustration In National Covid-19 Task Force Over Govt Inaction

Despite prior warnings from its scientists in late February, India’s government did not put in place a testing and surveillance strategy against the Covid-19 outbreak till end March, by which time its own medical experts expressed frustration at the inaction

April 23, 2020

Govt Knew Lockdown Would Delay, Not Control Pandemic

“Absent any other control measure, lifting lockdown would allow a resurgence of transmission:” India’s top medical-research body told the government in the first week of April. Two weeks into the lockdown, the measures were still not in place

December 1, 2019

Electoral Bonds: The Great Fraud

Modi govt's bizarre justification: Corporates should be allowed to donate secretly because they have a Right to Life under the Constitution which overrides citizens' right to information and is equal to citizen's right to secret ballot!

November 23, 2019

Electoral Bonds: Govt Admits It Lied That Donors Asked For Secrecy

The Modi government claimed repeatedly that donors asked for electoral bonds due to fear of political retribution if they used transparent methods of funding. An RTI reply shows this was a lie

November 22, 2019

Govt Made SBI Accept Expired Electoral Bonds Sold In Illegal Window

The bonds worth Rs 10 crore were redeemed soon after the 2018 Karnataka state elections resulted in a hung assembly. The bonds had been purchased in a special sale window opened at the direction of Prime Minister Modi's office

November 21, 2019

Electoral Bonds Are Traceable: Documents Nail Govt Lies On Anonymity

The State Bank of India (SBI) maintains a secret number-based record of donors who buy electoral bonds, and the political parties they donate to. Law enforcement agencies can request access to this record

November 20, 2019

Modi PMO Ordered Illegal Bond Sale Before Vital State Polls

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's office directed the finance ministry to break its own rules to approve the special and illegal sale of electoral bonds just before critical state assembly elections

November 19, 2019

Electoral Bonds: Confidential EC Meeting Exposes Modi Govt's Lies To Parliament

A confidential note reveals that finance ministry officials intentionally misled the Election Commission in an effort to dilute its opposition to the electoral bond scheme

November 18, 2019

Electoral Bonds: Seeking Secretive Funds, Modi Govt Overruled RBI

Former finance minister Arun Jaitley took just hours to dismiss the RBI's warning that electoral bonds could funnel black money into politics and destabilise the Indian currency, documents show

December 15, 2021

Modi Govt's Opaque Auction Rules Rip Off Govt Coffers, Help Millers Strike Rich

Auction method used to mill pulses under welfare schemes for poor and armed forces allowed millers to make unchecked profits for years, hammering the public exchequer and the quality of pulses supplied

August 17, 2021

Gujarat's Real Covid Tragedy Revealed: Data Suggests At Least 2.8 Lakh Excess Deaths During Pandemic

Data from thousands of pages of death registers maintained by municipalities in Gujarat show an excess death count of 16,892 for just 6% of the state's population during the pandemic. When projected across the state, the figure zooms to a staggering 281,000.



June, 2022

Centre Makes Aadhaar Must For Free Meals Under Nutrition Mission

The move could stop millions of poor children without Aadhaar from having healthy meal, and violates a Supreme Court order that no subsidy or service may be denied to children for want of Aadhaar

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April, 2022

Centre's Modified Auction Rules Allowed Millers To Corner Pulses Meant For Poor, Finds Government Agency

The Union government's auctions worth more than Rs 4,600 crore to provide pulses to the poor and armed forces were rigged to benefit a few big millers, shows the findings of the National Productivity Council, a government research body headed by Minister Piyush Goyal. The Council’s findings confirm The Collective’s previous exposé that the terms of auctions allowed the millers to rip the government off tonnes of pulses and sell them at a profit in the open market, and also supply poor-quality pulses.

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May, 2021

How MEA's Inaction Forced Embassies To Seek Covid Assistance From Opposition

MEA made urgent late evening deployments to its Covid Cell as late as May 01. This was 24 hours after the Philippines Embassy sought help from Indian Youth Congress for delivery of oxygen cylinders. In response, the MEA launched a bitter Twitter dogfight against the opposition for supplying cylinders to the embassy.

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April, 2021

A Bulky Mess: How Indian Vehicular Data Was Sold Cheap

Through a secretive deal, the government sold off vehicular bulk data of the entire country to a private company in a deal that officials red-flagged over lack of price discovery. With this exclusive low-cost bounty, the firm developed an entire business model based on the data. It even cut a separate agreement with a German firm and sent samples of sensitive data it received from the government. All this happened five years before the government announced a dedicated policy to sell the same data to other buyers.

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March, 2021

Inside The Hindu IT Cell: The Men Who Went Online To Protect Gods

A network of self-proclaimed Hindu volunteers file legal complaints and unleash a toxic wave of trolling, harassment, threats and doxing against social media users who they believed make “anti-Hindu” remarks

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