Could you imagine a situation where a second hand car commands higher price than a brand new car? Or waiting for 8 years to get a scooter? Well, this was how life was under the License-Permit-Quota Raj, a term coined by Rajaji to describe the Indian version of central economic planning.

License-Permit-Quota Raj meant that for everything you had to make an application, things were not easily available” says Mr. Yashwant Sinha, a former Finance Minister.

52% of Indians have been born after 1991.

They have heard discreet stories about life under license raj from their parents and relatives, but they don’t have an overall idea about what life was before 1991 and thereby don’t realize the importance of 1991 reforms.

India Before 1991 is an initiative of Centre for Civil Society, which is crowd sourcing human interest stories of life under license raj.

The aim of this project is to provide the people of our country with a holistic view about life under license raj by documenting stories and experiences of people who have lived during that time.

The stories collected through this project will teach the lessons from our history and highlight the impact of reforms on the people and their quality of life.

For more details please visit

About the fellowship:

This fellowship entails collection of 20 stories in a maximum period of 4 weeks (subject to extension if you wish to work longer with us). A certificate of appreciation will be awarded on successful completion of the fellowship.

The selected fellows will work on story collection and refining of those stories, which would be uploaded on the website

Target: Collecting 20 stories relevant to the project. [For more details about the project, click here; to view sample stories click here; to view questionnaire for interviewing people, click here].

Target audience for story collection can be anyone above 35-40 years of age who can provide stories relevant to the project.

All selected fellows will be given a brief orientation about the project and the framework for conducting interviews.

Who can apply: Open to all students and young professionals

How to apply: Fill the google form by clicking here or you can send your CV to [email protected] (link sends e-mail) (Subject of mail- India Before 1991 Fellowship)

Important dates:

Interviews: Within 4 days of submitting the application

Fellowship dates: 4 weeks

Note: This is a rolling application and selection process, which will go on till 15th May 2016.

For any queries, contact Neeraj Agarwal: [email protected] | +91-99902 54286

About CCS:

Centre for Civil Society (CCS) in New Delhi, is a public policy think tank that promotes social change through public policy. Our work in education, livelihood, and policy training promotes choice and accountability across private and public sectors.

We are the only Indian think tank to have been ranked in the top 100 think tanks worldwide by the annual study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania. Gurcharan Das, Luis Miranda, & Ajay Shah are some of our board members.


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  1. Hello,

    That was something that was considered to be as the ill effect of the society.
    Suppose every thing, that we wish to buy, was to be filled in with the license raj story.

    What made them think like that.
    For getting a scooter, one have to wait for 8 years.
    Wonder, that man would need a scooter after that period or not.
    I used to get these stories from my parents.

    God thanks, I got birth after 1991, wonder
    if I wanted to have a bike, should be waiting for at least 10 years.

    Thanks for the share.
    Shantanu sinha

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