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June 30, 2008
The prime minister cannot take things personally
The people want Manmohan Singh to lead, not to hand in his resignation. For the last four years he has presided over the economy, which is now facing difficult challenges. An economist prime minister is expected to get a grip over the situation, not walk into the sunset because he is feeling let down.

Dr Singh, lead or leave
Manmohan Singh is a nice man but India needs an effective prime minister. May be it is time for him to stand down.

June 28, 2008
If you have to die, do so around Delhi or Mumbai
The fact that the defence minister was represented by his deputy Pallam Raju, the fact that the navy and air staff sent two-star generals, shows that however high or mighty, if you should die as you must, you should do so somewhere in the vicinity of New Delhi -- or Bombay. Or else, too bad.

June 27, 2008
Pilgrims deserve better
To my mind, whether or not the land in question should be transferred to the SASB is only a technical question, not the heart of the issue. The more important thing is whether the state government feels that it has an obligation to improve the facilities that would make the pilgrimage of thousands of Hindu devotees more secure and more comfortable.

Is China doing a Mayanmar in Sri Lanka?
India is worried over Rajapakse's policy of bringing in external state actors into Sri Lanka. In the past, India had to worry about China, Pakistan and the US. Now, Rajapakse has started courting Iran, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia.

Licensed to live
The 'love that dare not speak its name' has found a voice, and legitimacy. Sandip Roy on the sexual revolution, circa 2008.

June 26, 2008
Mayawati's Sahara demolition is only a trailer
The demolition of Sahara Shahar's illegal encroachments is symbolic. The real assault will be executed at the right psychological and emotional moment, in true Mayawati style. Make no mistake.

June 24, 2008
Nuke deal and the prime minister's dilemma
Two things have thrown a spanner in the works for the prime minister and the Congress. One is the UPA allies. The second development is the hike in the inflation rate, which jumped to 11.05 percent.

June 19, 2008
Why I am fasting for Dr Binayak Sen
The 10-day fast by an array of illustrious and respectable persons around the globe is only an act of penance for the sinful act committed by the Chattisgarh police. I am contributing my bit by participating, in my own little way. I feel privileged and honoured to have been associated with this great cause in any way.

Salwa Judum: Strategy that backfired
What kind of strategy is it where you create 50,000 "enemies" to kill 500? Was it an experiment for India Inc to get tribal land vacated or a counter insurgency strategy gone horribly wrong?

June 16, 2008
An inside account of Sino-Indian border talks
The boundary question may not affect the present comfort level in bilateral ties, as both sides agree to look beyond the border dispute in promoting relations with each other. One cannot be optimistic, however, about the likely scenario in the long run.

June 12, 2008
How India can win the war on terror
The ultimate battle against Islamist terror has to be fought by the Muslims themselves, for they are its biggest potential victim.

June 11, 2008
Pak army and the jihadi's second coming
In the past Pakistan had to contend only with India. But the situation today is vastly different. Any adventurism by Pakistan could easily invite the wrath of the world, especially the West. The question is whether the Pakistan army gives in to its jihadi fervour or whether the instinct for self-preservation acquires primacy.

In glow of victory, equations change in the BJP
Even as these intra party skirmishes go on, at a wider level, Rajnath Singh and L K Advani are moving in a parallel fashion, towards the attainment of the same goal, like Vajpayee and Advani, for all their rivalries, did in the past. Both played to different galleries, one to the moderate opinion, and the other to the Hindutva spectrum.

All you want to know about terrorism in India
'When a Kashmiri extremist attacks a soldier, it is wrong to call it a terrorist attack.'

June 06, 2008
Stand up for the Indian soldier
One can't think of any major power in the world that treats its soldiers the way India does. It is indeed a sorry sight when India's bravest have to literally cry out for help from a callous politico-bureaucratic elite.

Inter linking rivers worse than 'India shining'
To begin with, inter linking of rivers is neither well thought out plan nor a development plan. It is essentially an extension of the big dam agenda that the Indian water resources establishment has been pursuing since the last 60 years. That agenda is not the best available option and has not been giving any additional benefits for over a decade.

June 04, 2008
America is willing to change
'Youngsters, it's clear, are voting for Obama. Not only that, they canvass for him, add him to their Facebook and MySpace profiles, and talk about him over coffee and classwork. Should he win, he will be inexorably linked with my generation.'

June 03, 2008
In-hurry Mayawati plans fast lane to Delhi
A strong-willed administrator, she takes quick decisions. Recently, she sanctioned the Taj Expressway, which will drastically cut the travel time from Delhi to Agra to two hours. The chief minister has also envisaged the Ganga Expressway, an 8 lane expressway, running over 1,100 km, across the entire state, from Greater NOIDA up to Ballia.

Can Sonia revitalise the Congress?
The Congress cannot do without the Gandhi-Nehru family, and they ensure the unity of the party. The Congress experimented with a Narasimha Rao and went back to the family. Sonia Gandhi neither faces a threat to her leadership nor a prospect of a split, which her mother-in-law had to contend with. But she will have to show a resoluteness she displayed in early 2004 if the party is to revitalise.

May 29, 2008
Religious institutions should expose injustice
Sanathana Dharma has laid out some of the best principles for humanity to achieve equality, social justice, a violence-free society, and a prejudice-free mind. Let every Indian strive for educating oneself and the society in these golden principles.

May 28, 2008
10 years on, nuclear shadow promises peace
'So many civil liberties activists have been killed by the State and their deaths left unaccounted for that I am beginning to despair.'

The saga of State impunity
Much depends upon how the civil society finally asserts itself in Pakistan. Along with democracy and aspirations of economic development, nuclear weapons would cease to be a threat and become a factor of regional stability.

May 27, 2008
Karnataka results may lead to new alliances
It goes without saying that it will put new heart into the BJP cadre to gear them up for the important electoral battles that lie ahead. Conversely, it will affect Congress morale. Barring Haryana, the party has not won any state election in recent months.

May 25, 2008
For BJP, Karnataka win more credible than Gujarat
It is worth noting that the BJP did not use the short cut of Hindutva to win the game in Bangalore.

How the Congress is losing more than just elections
Where the voter seeks a clean window to the future; the Congress seems happy to provide a muddied rear-view mirror of the past.

What Karnataka's results imply for national politics
The Karnataka election results may hold an important message for the Congress: Should it cut and run for the national election as quickly as possible?

May 23, 2008
Politics: Crisis of leadership, not capacity
Instead of blaming politicians and parties, Indians must empower their elected representatives and bureaucracies to meet national challenges by making critical investments in leadership. One of the chief aims of Indian foreign policy is to establish the country as a great global power. It is no secret, though, that much of this battle must be won at home.

May 21, 2008
Four years on, UPA losing direction
Unlike 2004 when Sonia Gandhi took things into her hands and hit the road and stitched up alliances, there is a lack of grip this time, as if things are on auto pilot. Cabinet meetings get over in minutes. People are glibly talking of a third front government in 2009 supported by the Congress.

May 20, 2008
The Buddha is still smiling
Ten years after India's nuclear tests, C Uday Bhaskar reckons the country was well served by revealing its capabilities.

The UPA'S Ten Commandments
These legislative measures, excepting Right to Education Bill, which is yet to be introduced are like Ten Commandments which have impacted the polity and society in a significant way and will go a long way in ushering an inclusive society.

May 19, 2008
Terrorism in the hinterland
'Terror targets cannot be protected by machines or manual security programmes alone. However, they can be countered to a great extent by enhancing cooperation among security agencies and timely intelligence sharing; strengthening political will; and most importantly public support.'

May 16, 2008
Why Dr Binayak Sen must be released
'What is disturbing is that if this liberal middle space is gone, there would not be a counter voice to violence.'

With good intentions Bush ambushes Israel
As many analysts have pointed out, by excessively identifying with Israeli policies, Bush has actually worked against Israel's long-term interests. Indeed, the Jewish State has become more unsure now than in it was in January 2001 when Bush became president.

May 14, 2008
Fight the war on New Terrorism to finish
'In this war, there is no mercy for ditherers.'

May 12, 2008
Four years of UPA: Foreign policy adrift
The absolute control of the Communists on all realms of policy-making, the single point agenda of the Congress party to stay in power as long as possible and the insistence of the Bharatiya Janata Party upon destroying its credibility as a national party -- all have ensured that Indian foreign policy continues to drift without any real sense of direction.

Tokenism won't revive Sainik Schools
A nation neglects its security at its peril. And Sainik Schools are a pivotal cog in the security apparatus.

May 09, 2008
Why did the 1857 celebration fizzle out?
'There seems to be something amiss and mysterious in the way 1857 was suppressed in 2007 and 2008.'

Politics has defeated the purpose of Pokhran tests
Without the lifting of the technology denial and India acquiring the ability to interact freely with all major nations economically and technologically India will not be able to have a real independent foreign policy which will make it an effective balancer of power. That was the real purpose of Pokhran II.

May 08, 2008
The Chinese threat in the Indian Ocean
At a cursory look, the development of a new strategic submarine by China appear to be of marginal impact on India as Sanya base is far away from Indian shores and as such ground-based missiles in China could be deployed in the event of skirmishes between the two rising countries in Asia. Besides, the avowed aim in developing the new Jin SSBN is not to target India but the United States, in the Chinese quest to become a great power in the world.

May 06, 2008
Only the Dalai Lama can unite China
'Mr Premier, please meet with the Dalai Lama, it will bring more good to China's image than 1,000 Olympic Games.'

May 05, 2008
Why the Karnataka poll is critical
Every election has its own fallout but the implications of the Karnataka poll go beyond its borders. For the BJP, winning the state means gaining the much coveted entry into the south. A victory in Karnataka would give a fillip to the Congress, after the recent string of defeats, and it could boost party morale for the battles ahead in the Hindi heartland.

May 02, 2008
Iran, India and the 'great game'
Central Asia with Iran as a major gas supplier is the arena where the new 'great-game' is being played out and China, India and Japan are all seeking to protect their respective energy interests for the medium term -- and pipeline politics is the new instrumentality.

April 30, 2008
Implications of Olympic flame on Everest
The Chinese have sought to counter the soft power of the Western media through the soft power of the patriotic response of the Chinese people and the overseas Chinese Diaspora.

April 29, 2008
India should fear China's defence spending
Due to China's vigorous military modernisation drive, the military gap between India and China is growing every year. China is now capable of inducting large numbers of troops into Tibet in a time frame that is likely to unhinge Indian war plans.

April 25, 2008
China's strike hard policy in Tibet
If the effort of bidding and conducting Olympics is to showcase China's rise to the world, popular indictments at the global and Tibetan levels have unnerved Beijing. For so long Tibet is considered to be the minimalist foreign policy position for China, while the Olympics indicated its bidding for global legitimacy for its policies.

April 22, 2008
Message from bypolls: Alliances are the key
Clearly alliances will be key for the Congress and the BJP and for that matter the UNPA in 2009 and in the state polls in the Hindi heartland later this year. The just held by-polls have only underscored this.

April 21, 2008
The time is right for the desi vote
South Asians could empower the entire community by flocking to polling stations in all upcoming elections, and show the importance of their ballot.

April 18, 2008
Why must India kow-tow to China?
'Is there any peace and Olympic spirit in a flame which has become the symbol of Chinese repression, arrogance and thirst for domination in Asia?'

April 14, 2008
Proving the historicity of Ram
Valmiki knew Ram to be a human, a noble man, the best of his era and in his time wrote the Ramayana as both were contemporary. He has also shown Ram to possess human traits and emotions, just like any ordinary person. We, in our blind faith, have accentuated the question marks on the historicity of Ram and Ramayana by treating Ramayana like a fable and depicting its noble characters as birds and animals.

April 11, 2008
Towards a more perfect Indian Union
What we know -- what we have seen -- is that India can change. That is the true genius of this nation.

April 10, 2008
The Supreme Court's stunning decision!
'It is time to acknowledge that the benefits of globalisation have remained in the privileged hands of a few, for whom the world begins and ends with fashion, Bollywood and cricket.'

April 09, 2008
DRDO is not a lost cause
One hopes the big daddies of South Block and DRDO realise why radical reforms are so crucial. For guest.

April 07, 2008
10 positives from the events in Tibet
The wretched of the earth have stood up and invited themselves to the Great Game.

March 27, 2008
India needs to change its Tibet policy
It is time for India to get out of its defensive mindset and timid approach in dealing with China. There are vital national security interests at stake. Relations with China must be handled from a strategic, not a legalistic, perspective.

March 26, 2008
Change will come from within China
In 1986, during an interview, the Dalai Lama told me: "We Tibetans can't do anything, except to keep their culture alive. A change will come from within China; it is our only hope". Twenty two years later, I believe this statement is the closest to a possible future scenario or 'solution'.

March 25, 2008
Yousuf Raza Gillani: Tough man for a tough job
The new prime minister has the distinction of saying a big 'no' to both President Pervez Musharraf and the late Benazir Bhutto many times. Gillani has always been loyal to his party but he is not a 'yes man', a quality which impressed Zardari.

Kamlesh Sharma: Our Man at the Commonwealth
Sharma has to be a catalyst working like an honest broker pleading for the interest of the developing countries of the Afro-Asian region with the developed West. He has to tread cautiously carrying with him the goodwill of both the developed countries and that of the developing countries.

March 24, 2008
Changing fortunes across Taiwan strait
The one country which has played its cards with impressive dexterity ever since the beginning of the crisis is India. It has avoided any judgmental observations, while generally appealing for return to the path of peace and reconciliation, and reiterating its time-honoured policy of accepting Tibet as part of China.

Making sense of the Tibetan imbroglio
The one country which has played its cards with impressive dexterity ever since the beginning of the crisis is India. It has avoided any judgmental observations, while generally appealing for return to the path of peace and reconciliation, and reiterating its time-honoured policy of accepting Tibet as part of China.

Tibet: Resuming dialogue is the only way
With 150,000 Tibetan citizens living in exile on its soil, many of whom shuttle between India and Tibet frequently, India nevertheless has a role in the resolution of this issue. Also, with Tibet under its control China has become India's Himalayan neighbour

March 21, 2008
Advani's book shows how hawk turned soft
Neerja Chowdhury on Advani's latest book My Country My Life.

March 19, 2008
Talbott is right, so is Sinha
It was the NDA government that had first mooted the idea of additional nuclear installations being subjected to International Atomic Energy Agency inspection in return for civilian nuclear co-operation. On the basis of this, it was logical for Talbott to assume that the NDA government would have accepted the present deal or even something less. He had read the minds of his interlocutors correctly.

Provincialism: Problems of Mumbai
Sooner or later, India will have to address the issue of regional disparity. Unfortunately the solution lies in social and political reforms in the BIMARU states. Presently there seems no sign of it.

March 18, 2008
Sonia Gandhi@10: A mixed bag
Sonia Gandhi's major failure has been on the party front. The Congress is hardly a major player in the country's four large states -- UP, Bihar, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal -- which account for 200 seats. If anything, the situation has deteriorated in these states.

Congress has Left in debt trap
The Left Front had a choice in September 2007, either to push for an immediate general election or to permit the United Progressive Alliance to complete its full term without making a fuss. In trying to be too clever by half the Left Front must now both swallow the chillies of humiliation at being outwitted and accept the lash of public anger in an election.

March 17, 2008
Provincialism: A new internal security threat?
What happened in the northeast and Punjab in the early 1980s ought to be remembered. It is true that public memory is short, but surely analysts and the government should know better.

In Tibet, China dishonours Olympic spirit
For decades, the Chinese 'minorities', particularly the Tibetans, have been wanting to express their deep-rooted resentment against a regime which slowly but surely is annihilating them.

March 14, 2008
Nuclear dilemma: The road ahead
While the bilateral agreement with the US will broadly spell out the parameters with in which the deal operates, stipulating the rights and obligations on both sides, the safeguards arrangement with the IAEA will showcase the actual implementation of the agreement.

Sonia's 10 years: Lacking in vision
Sonia Gandhi has had little to show, apart from stitching together a ramshackle coalition and somehow sticking to power. But, if she had given the green signal to the nuclear deal and called the Left's bluff, she would have become the darling of the middle classes. And even those who did not understand the intricacies of the deal would have appreciated her gumption in standing by her prime minister and taking a decisive step. The world belongs to the bold, not to the timid.

McCain is a man of great conviction
As a citizen of this country, as a small businessman who is proud to contribute to its economy, and as someone who has been fortunate enough to interact with him over a period of time, I have no doubt whatsoever in my mind when I say that Senator John McCain is, among all the available options, the one best fitted to be the next President of the United States.

China's Olympics and the '3 evils'
A successful conclusion of Beijing Olympics would give China the much needed fillip to not only rise further in the global order but also the "political legitimacy" in the major capitals across the world. However, the journey towards great power status is arduous, if not impossible to realise.

March 12, 2008
McCain would be best for the US and India
Senator McCain has been a consistent advocate of free trade. If he merely persists with the Bush administration's stance towards India, arguably the most pro-Indian of any administration since 1947, he would inarguably be the best for both countries.

March 07, 2008
Why Musharraf fears the Sharif-Zardari coalition
The general election was held about three weeks ago in Pakistan, but the president of the country is reluctant to call the meeting of the new National Assembly.

Pakistan's democracy faces its biggest test
After the euphoria of 'revenge of democracy', the Pakistani political establishment is coming to grips with the fact that the verdict of the February 18 general elections in Pakistan is more than anything else, a test of democracy.

February 29, 2008
Tribute: Sujatha will live with us through his work
Sujatha's demise is an irreparable loss to the Tamil literary world.

February 28, 2008
Will Zardari dump Sharif?
'If Zardari is to go by US advice and mange a majority by taking on help of the pro-Musharraf League, he will in effect be defying the popular mandate.'

February 27, 2008
US must adopt a tough Al Qaeda policy
The United States must henceforth adopt policies that treat Al Qaeda and the Taliban as a hostile state, says scholar Harold Gould

February 26, 2008
A powder-keg on the border with China
India will, therefore, be committing a grave blunder by banking on the anaesthetising phraseology of the various formal agreements with the Chinese and time being the healer. It should clinch the issue by holding brisk and business-like parleys.

February 22, 2008
India should stand up to China as an equal
The satisfaction we seem to derive from semantic play by the Chinese on these two issues reflects our mental acceptance of an inferior status vis-a-vis China and our readiness to be patronised by that country. We should not demand equality from China, we should behave as equals. We should protect our interests more forcefully.

February 21, 2008
US will pressure PPP to keep Musharraf
The Bush administration may fail to save its most trusted friend because the PPP and PML-N are determined to form a coalition and clip all those powers through which a president can dissolve parliament.

Has the BJP become pseudo-secular?
Although there is no indication of a genuine change of heart, what is probably happening is that the BJP is slowly undergoing a process of becoming acclimatised, as it were, to India's diversity.

February 18, 2008
Musharraf heading for a painful end
By the evening of February 18 it was clear that Pakistan People's Party, PML of Nawaz Sharif and Awami National Party have swept three provinces and the PML-Q performed well in Baluchistan.

Mayawati may settle for deputy prime minister
She may not be thrilled to compromise and subdue her vaulting prime ministerial ambitions. Her BSP is just a little short of becoming an all-India party. Therefore, she has no choice -- at least, not this time.

February 17, 2008
Musharraf's advisors expect another poll after 6 months
One of the advisors did not rule out the possibility of a new election after six months.

February 15, 2008
Why the Pakistan elections will be rigged
The Pakistan army actually faces a no win situation: if the elections are stolen very brazenly, then there is every possibility that the army will have to douse the fires that engulf the country; on the other hand, if the results are scientifically managed then there will be prolonged political instability, something that Pakistan can ill-afford at this point in time. Clearly, very interesting times lie ahead for Pakistan.

Is being Indian not enough?
'To live a secured and politically correct life in India, its better to have a provincial identity than just be an Indian.'

February 14, 2008
How India can acquire great power status
To avoid heading the way Pakistan is going and to realise its full potential, India will have to learn to use the 'stick' in tandem with the 'carrot'. With unique geo-political opportunities that exist for India on the international chessboard due to it's inherent strengths in several areas, to reach for the sky should not be all that difficult!

Vision, an honest mind & a nationalist spirit
Do we need short-term easy gains, that lead to catastrophe? Or long term progress? India will have to choose very soon when it elects its next government.

February 12, 2008
Arunachal: The land of rising ire
Indeed, as regards Arunachal Pradesh, the situation has got worse. Whereas in the past China's interest was confined to the district of Tawang, in recent times, it has blatantly enlarged its claim to cover the whole state

Why is Taslima Nasreen a prisoner?
It is not often understood that foreigners too have constitutional rights, one of most important of them being the right to life and personal liberty. Clearly Taslima's right to life and liberty have been violated by her detention. Unless the government has good reasons to justify her detention, she must be set free.

February 11, 2008
'Maharishi was an emperor and an ascetic'
Sri Sri Ravishankar, the founder of the Art of Living Foundation, pays tribute to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

February 07, 2008
China uneasy over PM's Arunachal visit
The tracing of internal dimensions of Dr Singh's visit to Arunachal by the Chinese experts (pressure from the Indian military and the need to 'balance' the moves of anti-China hawkish sections in India) seems to reflect China's doubts over the likely impact on the border talks coming from future political equations in India, especially in the context of general elections due in that country next year.

February 06, 2008
Security in the Asian Century
What seems certain is the growing influence of major Asian countries on the structures and processes of international relations in Asia. At the same time, we cannot overlook the influence of external actors on the continent. Asian security in the 21st century will thus be shaped by the interactions between major Asian powers and influential external actors such as European Union, Russia and the United States.

January 25, 2008
Rediscover the Sainik school
The decreasing interest in joining the armed forces should worry not just the ministry of defence but the nation too.

January 24, 2008
France's Hyper President comes calling
When President Chirac arrived in Mumbai in 1998, he declared: 'In India, France is not at the level where it should be.' Ten years later, it is still true. France has a role to play in India, but will Delhi and Paris will be bold enough to seize the occasion?

January 21, 2008
How DRDO has helped the nation
Tactical systems such as main battle tank Arjun, light combat aircraft Tejas, a family of radars, electronic warfare systems, sonars, torpedoes, armaments and missiles have been successfully developed in the country and many of them are being delivered to the armed forces. The recent success of the DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organisation) in the launch of interceptor missile and Agni-III has taken our country into the elite club of a few developed nations.

January 18, 2008
How Modi hopes to overcome opposition
Be it the vexed boundary issue or nuclear co-operation or supporting India's bid for a permanent seat, whatever India and China say is mere candy floss, says B S Raghavan.

Lessons from Pakistan
Since partition, the growth of the minority population in India has been manifold while Pakistan's minority population has dwindled from 15 percent to just 1 percent. The biggest mistake that Pakistan made was in not supporting its minority communities.

L K Advani's roadmap for world peace
Can Asia, or for that matter, the rest of the world, rest in peace if ideologies of religious extremism, exclusivism and global domination -- and these ideologies neither respect democracy nor tolerate secularism and plurality -- are allowed to grow in our midst?

January 17, 2008
Sino-Indian vision: Bloated, sugar-coated candy floss
Be it the vexed boundary issue or nuclear co-operation or supporting India's bid for a permanent seat, whatever India and China say is mere candy floss, says B S Raghavan.

January 15, 2008
Euphoria over PM's China visit unwarranted
The sense of proportion with which the government handled the visit underscores a profound understanding of this ground reality. Platitudes of the vision document notwithstanding, the cold reality is that both China and India are engaged in a period of adjustment in a highly volatile regional and international environment. To compound the variables, the process of adjustment has just about begun and is likely to be drawn out.

How DRDO failed India's military
If DRDO can appreciate that a technologically advanced and vibrant defence industry is equally critical for India's security and its global aspirations, we will not replicate this mistake. In other words, it should be made to realise that it solely exists to support the armed forces and not vice versa. Therefore, New Delhi should force ruthless accountability within DRDO and ensure fruitful collaboration with the private sector.

January 14, 2008
PM in China: Engaging the Dragon
Despite "positive" signals from Beijing during the PM's visit on the civilian nuclear technology issue, no progress is made on either a nuclear "de-targeting" or "non-targeting" agreements between the two countries. Nevertheless, it needs to be pointed out that Beijing is now prepared to support India in "important" international institutions and expressed its view to work with New Delhi in regional and international affairs.

Why you should retire quickly
Pradeep Srivastava has valid arguments to make.

January 11, 2008
Dr Singh is not Richard Gere
In diplomacy, it is inadvisable to be a straggler, as you may end up crawling back on a pitiless greasy pole.

Nuclear negotiators have not learnt from Tarapur experience
Throughout the evolution of the deal, since India has not insisted on the parity issue and resigned itself to playing second fiddle as a 'client' State, there are problems galore in having to contend with a deal with conditions heavily loaded against India on technical and economic issues with political overtones.

Lanka turmoil: Threat to India's soft underbelly
The dialogue must be open and the world at large told of the issues involved. But the first step for the process to begin is for both sides to accept that they are in a no win situation. If the world and India fails to convince the Sri Lankans, then we are looking at a fire next door with China gleefully fishing in troubled waters!

January 10, 2008
Violence in Kenya: A plague in paradise
Indians are constant targets of violence not because of any particular anti-Indian feeling, but because they are the richer of the species. They have bigger homes and more wealth for the looters and the thieves. Kenyans, who serve in these homes, are witnesses to conspicuous consumption by the Indians. Many homes resemble Hindi movie sets the Kenyans watch with envy every day.

January 09, 2008
Good timing for PM's visit to China
For reluctant optimists like me, there are still some inconvenient truths. I believe that the time has come for India to follow the example of China who, in Sonia Gandhi's words, has 'shown the world how much could be achieved with pragmatism, clarity of vision.

PM in China: Stability in times of turmoil
While this visit is expected not to forge any major breakthrough on outstanding issues that afflict bilateral relations in the last five decades, as with the other high-level political visits between the two countries so far, the bottom line is to create conditions that possibly tie both countries in politico-legal frameworks of stability.

January 08, 2008
Local factors led to Kandhmal violence
However, if there is any one aspect that is pan-Indian in all the incidents related to Hindu-Christian clashes it is religious conversions. Even in Kandhamal district, one of the major factors fuelling tensions is the conversion campaign of the evangelical groups. It is noteworthy that in a state like Orissa which enacted anti-conversion laws as back as in 1967, the Christian population in Kandhamal district alone has grown from 6 per cent in 1970 to 27 per cent in 2001

January 03, 2008
Armed might won't defeat the Naxals
Having traveled several times through the 'affected' areas in Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra I have little hesitation in testifying that the insurgency has much popular support. The police, forest and excise departments are truly hated and this is just about all the government the common people encounter.

Musharraf is wrong to delay the election
In a fair contest, with an independent judiciary, an unbiased election commission and neutral officials in the field, polls suggest Musharraf loyalists would be obliterated. If a delay is simply a pretext to thwart the PPP and to gerrymander a return of a pliable, pro-Musharraf parliament, countries that genuinely want a democratic Pakistan should condemn it.

The other Benazir we should remember
While paying tribute to the slain leader, keep in mind her anti-India stance and role in transferring nuclear technology to North Korea.

January 01, 2008
Benazir's disrupted dream: Bridging Islam with the West
Bridging an increasingly diverse West with the Islamic world was Benazir's dream and agenda.

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