Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism arrived in Pune with a fantastic episode at Sir Parshurambhau College on the 8 February 2012. The main attraction of the day was a talk by Swaminathan S Aiyar, Consulting Editor of The Economic Times and Research Fellow at the Cato Institute. There were over 150 students and faculty in attendance, and each received copies of the Indian edition of The Morality of Capitalism, a collection of essays by Tom G Palmer, and Social Change and Public Policy, published by the Centre for Civil Society.


The program started with a musical performance from the college band, Accidentally on Purpose, with tracks including Imagine by the Beatles, and Tracy Chapman’s Talkin’ ‘bout a revolution. This was followed by a theatre performance from students of the political science department, titled Freedom Caravan. The audience were then brought to their feet by a superb performance of A letter from Jonathan Gullible from the Delhi based theatre group, Mostly Harmless Ink.


The audience were treated to a passionate discourse by Swaminathan Aiyar on ‘The Morality of Capitalism’, and the benefits which freer markets could bring to the country. The talk was followed by a Q&A session where several key issues were raised.


Later in the day, Freedom Caravan visited Maharashtra Institute of Technology (MIT) College for a talk by Swaminathan Aiyar. The event commenced with a short quiz from our partners Liberal Youth Forum, where the students were asked questions regarding current affairs, and correct answers were rewarded. The talk was well received by the audience, totalling over 150 students and faculty. After an extended Q&A session, the program was brought to a close by the student’s participating in the World’s Smallest Political Quiz. The session was made possible thanks to the Youth Mission Studio, which works under the aegis of UNESCO chair at World Peace Centre MIT, Pune.
To view photos of the day click here.

Symbiosis Centre for Management Studies
Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism visited Symbiosis Centre for Management Studies on 9 February 2012. The highlight of the day was a talk by Swaminathan S Aiyar, Consulting Editor of The Economic Times and Research Fellow at the Cato Institute. Over 500 students and faculty were in attendance, and the packed auditorium represented Freedom Caravan’s largest audience so far. Those present received copies of the Indian edition of The Morality of Capitalism, a collection of essays by Tom G Palmer and Social Change and Public Policy, published by the Centre for Civil Society.


The day commenced with a short quiz on political and social issues conducted by our partners Liberal Youth Forum. This was followed by a production of A letter from Jonathan Gullible by the Delhi based theatre group Mostly Harmless Ink. The Director of the institute, Dr Anupama Suresh delivered the welcome address and felicitated our speaker.
Mr Aiyar’s began his talk by questioning the morality of democracy itself and the prevalence of ‘Money, Muscle and Influence’ in Indian businesses and politics today. To this effect he quoted Winston Churchill, “Democracy is the worst of all systems except for all the others”. He emphasised on the availability of choice in a democratic society, which is lacking in other forms of government, and stated that it was the same defence which capitalists used. He elaborated with two excellent examples; the inefficiency of Soviet policies which created widespread unrest and poverty, compared to markets, which he compared to computers, which match supply and demand. He also used the case of Berlin; although East Berlin was egalitarian, there was mass migration to the west due to the opportunities present.
The talk concluded with his views on corruption. He stated that although the scale of corruption has increased post liberalisation in India, its prevalence has in fact decreased in comparison to what it was in the pre liberalisation era, considering the relative size of the economy, then and now. He pointed out that the areas that are most corrupted are those with the greatest government involvement (natural resources, real estate and contracting) and backed these using statistics based on in a report by the World Bank on the relative ease of doing business in different countries.
To view photos of the day click here.

Gokhale Institute of Politics & Economics
The final program of Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism took place on 10 February, 2012 at Gokhale Institute of Politics & Economics. Over 70 faculty and students were present, including Dr Rajas Parchure, Director of the Institute. All the attendees were presented with the Indian edition of The Morality of Capitalism, a collection of essays edited by Tom G Palmer, as well as Social Change and Public Policy, published by the Centre for Civil Society.
The first part of the programme was a talk by Parth J Shah, founder-president of the Centre for Civil Society, on ‘Capitalism: Morality, Efficiency and Inclusion’. Using relevant examples like the difficulties faced by rickshaw pullers and the poor quality of state education, he outlined the importance of reviewing key government policies and turning towards the market in providing more effective solutions. The talk was followed by a theatre performance of A letter from Jonathan Gullible from Mostly Harmless Ink.


The second address of the day was delivered by Andrew Humphries, Charles G Koch Fellow with the Institute of Humane Studies and faculty at the Reason Individualism and Freedom Institute Summer Programs who developed on the ideas presented by Tom Palmer during his earlier talks in Delhi. Using practical examples like the advent of mobile technology, and interesting statistics based on research carried out by the Fraser Institute in Canada, he conveyed to students the benefits brought on by freer markets. The day was rounded up by the audience participating in the World’s Smallest Political Quiz.


With the end of Freedom Caravan, Centre for Civil Society has successfully reached out to over 3,000 students in Delhi and Pune.


To view Parth's presentation on Capitalism: Morality, Efficiency and Inclusion click here. To view photos of the day click here.

Young India Fellowship
Tom G Palmer, General Director of the Atlas Global Initiative for Free Trade, Peace, and Prosperity and Editor of the Morality of Capitalism, delivered a talk on the subject to the students at the Young India Fellowship on 29 January 2012. The lecture was attended by 60 students and faculty members, and they were treated to an hour long discourse on the benefits of liberal ideas and free-market capitalism. The audience was then divided into focus groups, where they had a chance to interact with each other and come up with questions for the speaker. The Q&A session which followed lasted for over an hour and featured several interesting arguments from both the students and Tom and was a great overall learning educational experience. The talk was preceded by the World’s Smallest Political Quiz, which gave the students an inkling of their own political leanings and an idea of their peers’ position on various personal and economic issues.
To view Tom's presentation on the Morality of Capitalism click here. To view photos of the day click here.


JMC & JNU
The opening day of Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism at Jesus & Mary College on 30 January 2012 was a roaring success. With over 300 students and several faculty members in attendance over the course of the day, this was an excellent opportunity for CCS academy to engage with young minds and present liberal ideas in an interactive and fun-filled way. The Indian edition of The Morality of Capitalism, a collection of essays edited by Tom G Palmer, was also launched. The book carries a foreword from Gurcharan Das and contributions from noted Indian free thinkers like Swaminathan A Aiyar, Jagdish Bhagwati, and Parth J Shah.


The day started with two lectures; 'The Morality of Capitalism’ by Tom G Palmer, and ‘Challenges of Inclusive Growth’ by Bibek Debroy. Each lecture was followed by a Q&A session with the students. There was a significant degree of audience participation in both sessions, with each speaker answering several student queries. The lectures were followed by a performance of ‘A letter from Jonathan Gullible’ by Mostly Harmless Ink, a play based on The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible, authored by Ken Schoolland. The program concluded with a scintillating musical performance from Delhi based fusion band Ekam Satyam, which included covers of ‘Imagine’ from The Beatles and the evergreen Sufi number ‘Lal Meri Pat’.


The Freedom Caravan rolls on to other campuses this week in Delhi including Jawaharlal Nehru University on 30 January, 9:30pm at Kaveri Hostel mess, Gargi College on 1 February, 10am at seminar hall, and St. Stephen’s College on 2 February, 1pm at the auditorium, before moving to Pune for the second leg of the fest.
Freedom Caravan also visited Jawaharlal Nehru University in the evening for a post dinner talk by Tom G Palmer on ‘The Morality of Capitalism’. The lecture was organised at the Kaveri Hostel mess and was attended by over 40 students. A stimulating Q&A session post the lecture lasted well into the night. The Indian edition of ‘The Morality of Capitalism’ were also distributed to the students in attendance.


To view Tom's presentation on the Morality of Capitalism click here. To view photos of the day click here.


Gargi College
Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism visited Gargi College on 1 February 2012. The fest was centred on a lecture by Tom G Palmer, General Director of the Atlas Global Initiative for Free Trade, Peace, and Prosperity and Editor of the Morality of Capitalism, copies of which were distributed to the 150 students and faculty members in attendance from the History, Political Science and Economics departments.


The lecture was initiated with a childhood story from the speaker, speaking of his fascination while watching the handheld devices used in Star Trek, using which Captain Kirk and his team communicated with the mother ship, and comparing it to the omnipresence of mobile technology in today’s world. Tom’s talk was engaging, informative, and relatable to the audience. He stressed that capitalism was not merely an economic and legal system, but also a cultural and moral system, which respects people’s rights to their personal possessions, and embraces the notion of innovations that disrupts established ways of doing things; a process called creative destruction. He used the example of typewriters, which have been replaced by the personal computer as an example of personal initiative creating better outcomes for the advancement of society. There were some staggering statistics presented based on research carried out by the Fraser Institute in Canada, which showed extremely strong correlations between free economies and prosperity.


The day concluded with an interactive session, with several interesting questions, including one on the current European crisis, which the speaker underlined as an example of crony capitalism, with the Greek government knowingly creating a situation where the taxpayers of Europe would have to finance their profligate deficit financings.
To view Tom's presentation on the Morality of Capitalism click here. To view photos of the day click here.


St. Stephen's College
The finale of the Delhi leg of Freedom Caravan: The Morality of Capitalism was organised 2 February, 2012 at St. Stephen’s College. The event consisted of two talks, a display of the World’s Smallest Political Quiz, and distribution of liberal literature produced by CCS and its partners. The Indian edition of The Morality of Capitalism, a collection of essays edited by Tom G Palmer was also presented to the 100 attendees.


The first talk on the Challenges of Inclusive Growth was delivered by the Founder President of CCS, Parth J Shah. He cited examples of government programs like the state of schools and the plight of unlicensed hawkers to illustrate how government policies could be refined to propel growth by implementing efficient alternatives such as school vouchers and deregulation of the informal industry.


The second talk on the Morality of Capitalism was delivered by Andrew Humphries. Building on the presentations of Tom Palmer during the previous events, the audience were exposed to a discourse on the benefits of free-market capitalism, which in his opinion have brought greater prosperity to the human race. Both the sessions were concluded by interactive discussions with the speakers, with several key issues being raised by the students.


Thematic displays in the campus premises sparked a great deal of conversation between passing students and the team members and volunteers. The World's Smallest Political Quiz was another major attraction, and several students left the event with new ideas and a better understanding of the concept of liberty.
Freedom Caravan now moves to Pune to continue in its aim of reaching out to the youth, stimulating ideas and introducing them to liberal philosophy.

Freedom Caravan: 2012
The Morality of Capitalism | Pune & Delhi
  • 08 Feb 2012
  • Certificate of completion
Application Deadline
01 Feb 2012
Closed