Politics is the art of the possible in which there can be strange bedfellows in pursuit of po-wer.
With the Israeli elections appr-oaching and Prime Mini-ster Benjamin Netany-ahu’s anti-Obama address to the joint US Congress on Iran, there is an air of unreality to the whole exercise.
Every time Pakistan says it wants to talk about Kashmir, India finds itself on the back foot.
The “Budgetometer” and its elsewhere equivalent played the real hero — caught in between the ecstatic urge to give a 10-plus and the understandably unreasonable rush in search of a negative score, it
Listening to Suresh Prabhu presenting the Railway Budget, I wondered whether he was really promising to bring back the halcyon days of luxury on the rails. But no, he can’t and won’t.
There always comes a time when you have to heed Jesus who said: “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s.” So this time I will render unto the finance m
The devil, they say, is in the details. There is a world of difference between the Budget speech of Arun Jaitley, peppered with smart announcements, and the real numbers in the Budget documents.
“It’s always time to say goodbye Said the spider to the fly As he wove his tangled web With a crocodile tear in his eye. It’s easier jumping over the moon Sang the cow to a feline tune
In the ever-changing political and economic scenario, seismic changes take place in the corporate world.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has often mentioned that India enjoys a 3D advantage of democracy, demography and demand in the global economy.
If you were to ask Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s legion of admirers to draw up a list of Modi baiters, a typical one would probably lead with the BJP’s political foes, left-leaning liberals, a large
Finance minister Arun Jaitley’s maiden Budget was presented on July 10, 2014.
There is speculation that the so-called sabbatical of Rahul Gandhi is because of petulance at not getting his way in the party.
The 14th century Sufi master Sharfuddin Maneri of Maner in Bihar is known as the Sufi of a hundred letters.
A political inferno has erupted in northern Myan-mar’s Shan state to expose the destabilising role of China in Asia’s strategic hinterland.
When finance minister Arun Jaitley gets up in the Lok Sabha on Saturday to present the Union Budget for 2015-16, he will almost certainly seek to emphasise how his government will ease the way busines
The word “change” is generally confused with Lampedusa’s famous phrase: “better to change a little so that everything can stay the same.” And when we feel that the time has come for a change, we uncon
China obviously looms large on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s foreign policy agenda.
Let’s just say my spoken and written language is anything but ladylike depending on the context, of course (luckily for me, I always manage to find a context!) I like cuss words. Always have.
In my previous article Love, sex aur dhoka (February 10), I had discussed the lax attitude of our courts towards men who cheat on their wives and sexually exploit younger women promising marriage.
In The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, physicist and philosopher, Thomas Kuhn revolutionised the history of science by showing that science does not evolve linearly on the basis of objective, the
Fred Hoyle was arguably the most imaginative astrophysicist of the 20th century.
Mehdi Masroor Biswas’ was indeed a curious case.
Indian Railways is perhaps, the cheapest rail transport system in the world with an average revenue per passenger, per kilometre of Rs 1.9 for upper class, 27.47 paise for second class mail/express, 1
This much seems clear: The Bharatiya Janata Party and Narendra Modi (I think I should have written that the other way around) did not lose Delhi because Mr Modi wore that Rs 10 lakh suit pinstriped wi
The classics warn us “beware of Greeks bearing gifts”, a reminder of ancient Greek trickery in infiltrating Troy hidden in a wooden horse presented as gift.
In October 2014, a popular daily newspaper carried an interesting news item “HC unties the knot for man who claims he was forced into third marriage”.
Dara, a play based on the life of Dara Shikoh, is being staged right now at the National Theatre, and it is based on the original play that many of us have seen in India, performed by Ajoka Theatre fr
As cricket hurtles toward another World Cup, another test of cricketing greatness, one question lingers: Who is the greatest batsman in cricket history? Myths surround every sporting legend.
In its most benevolent interpretation, Hindutva is the ideology that proclaims that India is, should be, a Hindu rashtra (nation) where the status of religious minorities should depend entirely on Hin
The Supreme Court, in a landmark judgment on December 18, 2014 — Additional District and Sessions Judge ‘X’ versus Registrar General, High Court of Madhya Pradesh pronounced how sexual harassment case
A bitter little tale that did the rounds of Calcutta’s buses and trams during the Emergency had it that India would have been spared a great deal of anguish if only Raja Rammohun Roy hadn’t helped to
On every Republic Day, when expertly choreographed T-90 main battle tanks, superbly marching infantry, vivid cultural floats and frolicking school children pass in review before the presidential salut
In 2007, when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh began pushing the Indo-US nuclear deal, the entire Opposition objected to it.
I travelled to Hampi recently and was blown away by the palace and temple ruins, and the fascinating landscape it was set in. To make it even more interesting, I stayed in a wildlife resort nearby.
President Barack Obama’s visit to India as the chief guest for our 66th Republic Day was a first since, surprisingly, no other US President had come in this capacity before.
US President Barack Obama missed a visit to the Taj Mahal, the symbol of eternal love, to affirm a more valuable love affair, one that the United States has had for 70 years with a most unlikely partn
US President Barack Obama’s visit to India may be over, but controversies swirl ranging from the cost of the pinstripe button-up suit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to what exactly has been the solut
Never mind if it was divine intervention or crafty cunning.
On the first day of American President Barack Obama’s visit to India, the two most commonly used words were chemistry and optics.
Two recent events — seemingly unrelated and separated in time and space need our careful consideration.
January 27, 2015, was an eventful day. A few events took place almost simultaneously on this day that are likely to impact the future of India’s security and economy.
I am happy that we have more tigers today than yesterday. But I am not happy that, as a nation, we are bent on counting tigers and alternately moaning or gloating over it.
The fuss that the TV channels have been making about a debate between the Delhi’s potential chief ministerial candidates like the US presidential candidates do has been baffling because the focus has
US President Barack Obama’s second visit to India has set tongues wagging about his rare personal chemistry with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
US President Barack Obama, during his visit to India this week, intends to highlight the strategically essential US-India relationship and shore up support for a wide variety of shared policy interest
There are several ways of looking at the debates around freedom of speech.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s invitation to US President Barack Obama to be the chief guest at India’s Republic Day parade is a confident, bold stroke.
Narendra Modi’s electoral juggernaut finally hit marshy ground in the nation’s capital.
The controversy that has erupted in the wake of Tamil writer Perumal Murugan declaring himself dead, disowning all entire writing, and requesting readers to set fire to all his novels, not just Matho
The three-day siege in Paris between January 7 and 9 can at best be understood as a consequence of something much larger at play in Europe.
The smallest of diplomatic gestures are sought to be analysed from the prism of China-India rivalry on the island nation of Sri Lanka.
The DNA of Kiran Bedi and the Bharatiya Janata Party seem twinned at birth.
In 1963, just after the trauma of the border war with China, the Congress lost three high-profile parliamentary byelections in quick succession.
Appearances are deceptive. A white American President will be received next Sunday by a white Asian President.
What happened at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo was condemnable without reserve and the world’s media, including in India, have risen in solidarity.
The Opposition is targeting the government for issuing ordinances immediately after the Winter Session.
Good intentions may sometimes lead to bad outcomes.
Many doctors often prescribe a particular brand of medicine for personal gains.
As the New Year begins, I feel compelled to reflect on how fictions and abstract constructions are ruling us; the nature of being and existence is being redefined in such fundamental ways that life it
It’s like that old story. You can’t keep snakes in your backyard and expect them to only bite your neighbours.
Most Indians with the slightest knowledge of India’s nationalist struggle have at least a passing familiarity with Muhammad Ali Jinnah’s “two-nation theory” Pared to the bone, Jinnah’s contention was
Beginning of a New Year is an apt time to appraise the nation’s performance in the management of its foreign policy and diplomacy as also to reflect on what may be in store in the coming months.
Tolerance requires no more than the ability to ignore what is not to one’s liking. But people expect others to be “reasonable” — in other words, be like me.
When Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party won the election in May, many commentators were worried that a new brand of authoritarian nationalism would soon rear its ugly head.
2014 was the year in which pictorial satire in India deliberately sought and found new worlds to conquer.
Two unconnected developments marked 2014 as a unique year in the contemporary history of India’s political economy.
Rarely have analysts applied the theory of conflict management in the 25-year long ex-ternally spon-sored internal conflict in Jammu and Kashmir.
I first heard Atalji’s speech in 1967, when I was in school. There was a political rally near my house in Delhi for the 1967 general election. He came to address that rally.
The term “shifting the goalpost” has come to be overused in polemical exchanges.
Earlier this month, energy minister Piyush Goyal announced that the proposed amendments to the Electricity Act, 2003, will allow consumers to exercise their choice to select the electricity supplier.
This may be Narendra Modi’s government, but India may be on its way to becoming Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s republic. The signs point that way.
The past is another country, said L.P. Hartley and how true that sounds when one looks over the newspapers of just a year ago.
The massacre of the innocents at the Army school in Peshawar highlights dangers that our schools are exposed to.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi raised a lot of eyebrows when he arrived at the banquet hosted by President Pranab Mukherjee for his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at the Rashtrapati Bhavan last week
For most of last week the Rajya Sabha has not been able to function. Disruption of Parliament is not an edifying scene, especially when the whole nation can watch it unfold on live television.
What do the Taliban really want and why is it not easy for Pakistan to fight them?
Ever since the Bharatiya Janata Party’s poster woman, Smriti Irani, has been made the Union human resources development minister, she has been embroiled in controversies.
India’s retail sector is a potpourri of formats.
There was a news report not so long ago that ICRISAT (International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics), an international organisation and part of the CGIAR (Consultative Group on Inte
Good governance seems to be all about seeking coherence through confusion.
Science is serious business! To the outsider, scientists are a body of people who are dedicated to their research and know how to go about it.
The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA) has become a very controversial issue.
As the big freeze descends, London begins to look as it used to, before we knew what global warming was.
Elections are cathartic moments in the life of a democracy, a time for a new beginning, a new order and a new way of doing things.
The late Dilip Singh Judeo, poster boy of the Bharatiya Janata Party for re-conversion of Christian tribals to Hinduism became the subject of a TV sting in 2003.
Why is New Delhi opposed to Islamabad’s idea of upgrading Beijing as a full member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc).
After watching Bharatiya Janata Party MP Sakshi Maharaj holding forth in Parliament about Nathuram Godse, something happened in the pit of my stomach.
The Internet is the boldest attempt at anarchism and it has succeeded. It epitomises the vastest ungoverned sphere on the globe.
“Suspicion was a fairy With a cyber-sifting wand Suspicion had a licence to kill Suspicion was James Bond Suspicion knew no logic Sister of Jealousy Suspicion wove its tangled web
A booming stock market should normally indicate a booming economy, but the link doesn’t always hold.
December 26, 2004, Sunday morning, saw the calm in Naval Headquarters (NHQ) being shattered by ominous reports of powerful seismic shocks and giant tidal surges in our Bay of Bengal islands and coasta
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin comes to New Delhi on an official visit at a tantalising time for two reasons.
On November 26, 2008, ten Pakistani jihadists of the Lashkar-e-Tayyaba travelled by sea to Mumbai in a fishing trawler, infiltrated ashore from rubber assault boats near Cuffe Parade, split up into te
This week we had a minister separating Indians as being either “Ramzadas” (meaning Hindus) or “haramzadas”, meaning bastards.
Kuppegala isn’t one of those places that instantly ring a bell.
The recently-held conference of the police chiefs of the country in Guwahati was a bit of disappointment considering the expectations generated by the Modi government.
Being a comedian is far from being funny. After a while you cease to be a person.
Verdicts of the courts can roughly be categorised into three classes.
Viswanathan Anand has for the second year running been outclassed in the World Chess Championship by a player nearly 20 years his younger.
Narendra Modi was sworn in as Prime Minister on May 26, 2014, and has clearly won the sprint when his government completes six months in office on November 26.
Last Sunday Pope Francis canonised six saints in Vatican Square.
The spiritual world has known so many wonderful mystics and most of them have been men.
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi embarks on a trip infused with the neighbourhood spirit this week to attend the 18th Saarc summit in Kathmandu, he may reflect on a certain irony — that while the India
At first sight, German seems a formidable language to study. And it is, like any foreign language.
Now that the newly elected Bharatiya Janata Party government has won the much-talked-about confidence vote and chief minister Devendra Fadnavis is in the saddle, at least for some time, a question ari
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s electrifying speech to a sellout crowd of over 16,000 Indian Australians in Sydney’s grand Allphones Arena is another landmark in what is becoming a trend of shining lig
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is certainly an icon for a large number of people but he is also fast emerging as an iconoclast when it comes to the Nehru-Gandhi legacy.
The Nehru era, which started in the 1930s, came to an end with the last election in India. Those who came to power following the elections are not particularly interested in Pandit Nehru’s legacy.
The debate on Pandit Nehru on TV channels as well as in the press is so philistine and pathetic that one wonders whether our country has lost the sense of history and intellectual rigor altogether.
There are quite a few strange categories of employment.
On December 18, 1992, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) “celebrated” the demolition of the Berlin Wall by installing a piece of that structure as a monument in their Langley office compound.
With television, the Internet and our smartphones we have daily sightings of our leaders.
If Mahatma Gandhi’s legacy to India is liberal Hinduism, B.R. Ambedkar’s legacy is Navayana Buddhism, what is Nehru’s legacy in terms of socio-religious ideas and thought? Atheism and rationalism.
It was meant to be no more than a gentlemanly gesture. There was a nip in the air during the recent Asia Pacific Summit.
A party in doldrums is always an invitation for analysis. The eerie aspect of the Congress’ decline is the reaction to it.
November 9 marked 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall, a potent symbol of the Cold War.
Today I was reminded of this joke from my childhood, about a Fuller Brush salesman trying to sell a new vacuum cleaner.
Saif Ali Khan, in the context of the recent “love jihad” controversy, wrote in a newspaper: “When Kareena and I married, there were similar death threats, with people on the Net saying ridiculous thin
“He who has the ultimate laugh Will without a doubt Laugh alone with moistened eyes And nothing to laugh about!” From Kem Dikra Kem Chhe by Bachchoo
One of the promises made by the Bharatiya Janata Party before the 16th Lok Sabha elections was that it will get back all the black money that has left India over the years.
Samuel Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot flagged off “the theatre of the absurd” movement, which was so popular in the 1960s.
If you are concerned about how a brazenly communal party like the All-India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (MIM), whose sphere of influence remained limited for decades to a single city, Hyderabad in A
Exactly a year ago, to the date, state elections were notified in Delhi pitting contrasting electoral machineries of the Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Aam Aadmi Party against each other
Relationships are really the bane of our life whether they be with our loved ones and also within our so called professional lives. We’re, throughout our lives, seeking that one very right relationship with a very right person who we think is absolutely right for us.
Now, why am I not surprised? The very actors, directors and power-brokers, who had once dismissed her either as just another pretty face or as an actress who looks good but acts bad, are now eating their words for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
A charitable interpretation of the acceptance by our leaders of Partition and the bloodbath that it entailed would be that they expected it to have, once and for all, settled communal conflict in Inde
I’m a 20-year-old college student. I was in love with my classmate. Last month I broke up with her. She cheated on me. And now it is very hard for me to face her all day in class.
It is easy to be nostalgic about US-India relations. Think of the days when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would gush to President George W.
Certain “dastardly deeds” (how our netas love these two words!) are just more “dastardly” than others. The cold-blooded, pre-meditated daylight murder of a legend called Narendra Dabholkar was one of them.
Gazing into India, on my occasional visits, standing on the Pakistani side of Wagah border, the only land crossing permitted along the border between India and Pakistan, I have inevitably, with moist eyes, remembered my late father.
Kajol, who lived on the upscale Altamount Road, had never seen life in the raw.
John Garver, a leading American expert on Sino-Indian relations, has likened Beijing’s strategy towards India to the Chinese way of cooking a frog. Plonk the frog in a vessel and turn up the heat slowly. If the water was hot to begin with or the temperature were to rise much too quickly, the frog would simply jump out and escape.
Nations on the march, or those in the dumps, have sometimes found great leaders to lift their spirits, offer a guiding vision, fuel ambition and help them leap forward. A down and out China found Deng Xiaoping, a fast-declining Britain got Margaret Thatcher, and a de-spirited America had Ronald Reagan.
One of the most tumultuous occurrences in the history of British media took place this year when some journalists working at the highly successful tabloid, News of the World , were accused of using underhanded means for news gathering.
In the next 10 days, Gujarat will go to polls, ostensibly to elect a legislative Assembly, but in reality to put a stamp of approval on its chief minister for over a decade, Narendra Modi. The only suspense is whether it does so with absolute conviction, that is, with a clear majority of votes cast, or through a plurality.