Gopal Krishna

Gopal Krishna is a researcher and writer on the subject of earth, economy, science, justice, and the role of communicating myriad forms of data and narratives. He formally studied literature, philosophy, journalism, public health, and law, and is a trained researcher, lawyer, and science journalist. He has been a regular writer on corporate crimes and the war on the ecosystem since 2000, contributing to publications like MainstreamThe TribuneBusiness TodayTehelkaOutlook,,,, Hindustan Times, The HinduSamayantarYathavat, and Prabhat Khabar. He co-authored Disputes Over GangaKosi Deluge: The Worst is Still to ComeThe Return of the Giants, and The Omnis hambles of UID. He is a member of the National Steering Committee of Nation for Farmers, a forum of non-farmers to support over 210 farmers’ organizations. He is also the editor of the online journal Toxic Watch Journal. He has appeared before Indian, European, and German parliamentary committees, Supreme Court committees, and UN conferences. Gopal has also worked as visiting faculty at universities and training institutes and as a commentator on public policies.

Research Project

My study explores the relationship between processes and practices of reactionary ideologization and authoritarian economic and social forces, but intersects with other areas at a time when the dominant ideology is taking the world towards the “commodification of everything”, including nature and data. Institutions of big data technologies automatically enshrine existing inequalities and externalize the cumulative cost of irreparable damage to the ecosystem. Bearers of reactionary ideologies use these technologies to frame certain internal and external communities as national security threats. Data grids like India’s Central Identities Data Repository (CIDR) of biometric Unique Identification (UID) numbers disguised as an initiative for targeted welfarism. This study examines data capitalism using CIDR as the entry point, and will look at protests and agitations against such injustices. Corporate owners of social media technology and conventional media are complicit in the rise of reactionary populist ideologies. This study makes a case for building organic alliances between South-North countries to combat universal risks and costs.


“India’s identity crisis: Nine reasons to fear National Population Register (NPR) and Aadhaar“, Business Today, 4 February 2020, 

„Aadhaar, NRC and NPR : Part of 360 degree Mass Surveillance“, Gauri Lankesh News, 25 January 2020,  

“NRC, NPR, Aadhaar are part of huge surveillance plan“, Rediff, 31 December 2019, 

„Solidarity of “Social Left” alone can guide the ‚Party Left'“, Mainstream, vol.LVII, no.37, 31 August 2019, 

„Why Farmers and Farm Workers are demanding Special Session of Parliament“, Mainstream, vol.LVII, no.6 26 January 2019, 

“Preliminary Inquiry into Mega Projects of South America and South Asia: Simile of water flow for data“, Mainstream, vol. LVI, no. 29,

All Publications from Gopal Krishna:

  • Revisiting the Panopticon and the Synopticon: An inquiry into the naturalisation of totalitarian surveillance in the name of the COVID-19 pandemic

    Ideas and ideologies can kill.[i]Derived from two Greek words that together mean "all-seeing", the panopticon was initially conceived as a prison designed to ensure the perfectly complete surveillance of all prisoners. Panopticon refers to “the few seeing the many”. In this architecture, all those who have been turned into sub-humans by being categorized as prisoners are placed under the surveillance of few wardens. Its reincarnation in digital form has made it capable of enveloping the entire human population and to subject it to eternal surveillance. This scale of the idea has vastly increased. Its merger with the idea of the synopticon is paving the way for a 360˚ surveillance of every imaginable human activity.