Mathew Idiculla

Research Associate

Mathew Idiculla is a Research Consultant at CLPR where he focuses on urban law and policy work. He graduated with a B.A., LL.B. from School of Law, Christ University and worked at the School of Policy and Governance at Azim Premji University from 2012 to 2016. He has also been a researcher in the project “Global Suburbanism” housed at York University, Toronto.

Mathew’s research interests are in the intersection of law, politics and policy, particularly in the following areas: Constitutional and Political History of India; Comparative Constitutional Design; Theories of State and Governance; Federalism and Decentralisation in India; Urban Governance and Policy; Local Government Law and Critical Urban Studies.

Mathew has widely researched and engaged with Bangalore’s urban governance issues for many years and helped in framing the proposed legal and governance architecture of the city government under the 2015 Report of the Expert Committee on BBMP Restructuring. Along with academic and policy research, he organises a discussion forum on urban issues and writes regularly on various public concerns in newspapers, magazines and online publications.



A New Deal for City Governments (with Mathew Idiculla)

September 18, 2020

Mathew Idiculla talks to host Pavan Srinath about how Indian cities need a new deal in the 2020s, with fresh imagination. Mathew explores the place of city governments in constitutional and legal regimes across the world, and how they are treated within India.

Go to link

A Right to the Indian City? Legal and Political claims over housing and urban space in India

August 5, 2020

This paper examines the idea of the “Right to the City” as a theoretical concept, and it’s emergence in international law and social movements and explores how it may be realized as a legal and political claim in India.

Go to link Open PDF

‘The primacy of the elected’

July 10, 2019

CLPR associate Mathew Idiculla writes for the Hindu about argues that the rights of a legislative assembly of a Union Territory should be seen as an integral element of federalism and that the Supreme Court should affirm the primacy of the elected government.

Go to link

Will nationalist card be enough for NDA to retain power?

April 13, 2019

CLPR Research Consultant Mathew Idiculla asks, will the nationalist card be enough for the NDA to retain power? Writing for the Deccan Chronicle, he looks at whether Bengaluru voters will be prioritize national or local issues when deciding whom to vote for.

Go to link

Rahul Gandhi wants to directly elect mayors. But is it a workable idea for India?

April 4, 2019

CLPR Research Consultant Mathew Idiculla analyses Rahul Gandhi’s plan to directly elect mayors. He asks, ‘is it a workable idea for India?’ On Tuesday, 2nd April 2019, the Rahul Gandhi released the Congress Manifesto. He wants to introduce a system that directly elects mayors to provide leadership that builds ‘real smart cities’.

Go to link

The shape of an urban employment guarantee

April 1, 2019

Mathew Idiculla, Rajendran Narayanan and Amit Basole analyse what an urban employment guarantee might look like. They argue that it would not only improve worker incomes, but also have a multiplier effect on the economy.

Go to link

CBI does not need to be saved from Narendra Modi. It needs to be dismantled

February 14, 2019

CLPR Research Consultant Mathew Idiculla asks, is the CBI an institution worth saving? Writing in the Scroll, he traces the historical origins of the Central Bureau of Investigation, the concerns over its legal validity, and growing public distrust, to argue that CBI is one institution that does not deserve to be “saved”.

Go to link

Local Government Elections in Rajasthan: “Let the grassroots breathe”

January 11, 2019

Centre for Law and Policy Research Consultant Mathew Idiculla writes on local government elections in Rajasthan for The Hindu. He discusses the minimum educational qualification criteria in Rajasthan’s local body polls.

Go to link

Maharashtra has boldly expanded NOTA, with Haryana following suit. Will it pass legal scrutiny?

November 26, 2018

The State Election Commissions of Maharashtra and Haryana recently ruled that if the NOTA option receives the…

Go to link

Castles in the air

October 16, 2018

Last week, Paul Romer (along with William Nordhaus) was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics for his work on “endogenous growth theory”. Interestingly, Romer has also been championing the creation of Charter Cities – new cities with distinct laws that seek to attract investment and economic growth. In this op-ed, Mathew Idiculla critically examine the motivations and the realities of such an idea in the Indian context.

Go to link

Don’t look to SC to do it

September 17, 2018

A 5-Judge Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court reserved its judgment in a PIL demanding the disqualification of legislators with pending criminal charges.  In today’s Deccan Herald, Mathew Idiculla examines whether the Court is the right institution to introduce such electoral reforms.

Go to link

Inside the glittering façade

August 17, 2018

In this article published in the Hindu Business Line, Mathew Idiculla, Research Consultant at CLPR reviews James Crabtree’s book: The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India’s New Gilded Age.

Perceptive and detailed, James Crabtree’s book advances a familiar argument about the story of India’s uneven growth.

Go to link

Federalism and Fairness

April 2, 2018

Mathew Idiculla’s op-ed titled ‘Federalism and fariness’ appeared in The Hindu on 3rd April 2018. In this article, in the context of South Indian States’ demand to rethink federalism, Mathew analyses these demands by making constitutional and historical arguments.

Go to link

Can the Karnataka model of development do for Siddaramaiah what such slogans did for Modi?

March 13, 2018

Karnataka State elections are scheduled for the 2nd week of May 2018. Matthew Idiculla of CLPR writes in The Print, that since 2017 Mr.Siddaramaiah has started fashioning a campaign based on the “Karnataka Model of Development”. This model leverages the halo effect created by putting forward development policies and employs the communication power of Twitter to promote “#NavaKarnataka2025”.

Go to link

A path to executive power

January 30, 2018

On Jan 21st the President Ram Nath Kovind approved the recommendation of the Election Commission to disqualify 20 MLAs of AAP, as it was deemed that they were holding offices of profit. Matthew Idiculla details out the actions that led to this order. In this op-ed in The Hindu, he also looks at the history of and the reason for this practice and delves into why this practice has continued to flourish in the Indian legislative system.

Go to link

Multiple faces of Akrama Sakrama argument

November 15, 2016

This newspaper article by Matthew Idiculla tracks the key arguments on the ‘Akrama Sakrama’ matter that have been made by the petitioners up till now before the Karnataka High Court.

Go to link

Comments on the Karnataka Budget: Urban Development and Infrastructure

February 13, 2019

On February 8, 2018, Chief Minster H.D. Kumaraswamy presented the Karnataka state budget for the financial year 2019-20. In this short comment in Prajavani, Mathew Idiculla analyses the urban development and infrastructure components of the state budget. He argues that though there are no trailblazing ideas on urban development in this budget, an overall emphasis on sustainability and public transportation is positive. The proposals for a “Bengaluru Mobility Scheme” and a “Parking Rules and Implementation Policy” are particularly noteworthy.

Read more

Constitutional Local Government @ 25 | The Future of Urban Governance in India | Agenda

December 5, 2018

Constitutional Local Government @ 25 The Future of Urban Governance in India Centre for Law…

Read more

Presentation at the IGSSS National Roundtable – “Looking Back at 25 years: A Review of the 74th Amendment”

November 13, 2018

(Mathew Idiculla gave a talk on 12th November 2018 at UTC on the 74th Amendment…

Read more