BLOGS

Who let the Sardar out?

Only in India would a proposal to erect a statue in memory of Sardar Patel, who oversaw the integration of princely states into India as we know it today, create so much controversy. After all, the poor Sardar only added to the land mass of India,

RIP gold. Will Unnao get back to being back of beyond?

In a distant land at a time long, long time ago, an old monk had a dream. There’s gold buried in Unnao, he declared one fine day. Unnao, half of India thought with a sense of detachment, was the new UN building in Harare and stood fo

Democracy`s flabby middle

No, this is not about Modi`s expanding girth. It`s about how archaic are our systems for "group think" on public affairs. It is not only about having to elect an MP, an MLA or a councilor to represent us. “Group think” systems are inst

JAC a welcome change but there is room for improvement

Change is inevitable, governments change, trends change, one system makes way for another, and it could be for the better or worse. Nevertheless, change is constant and if it is in a positive direction it should be welcomed. Very soon the collegiu

India needs to be fair to everyone knocking at its door for help

The Indian government`s denial of political asylum to Edward Snowden brought into focus the lack of an objective procedure for treatment of asylum seekers. And what is even worse is that no detailed reasoning was offered for this decision.

Yesterday once again: are you ageing, my friend?

You know your age has passed the halfway house and it is all downhill from now on when: * People tell you to take it easy, slow down, you are not getting any younger, lean back a bit – and you hate them for saying it. Everyone

We want a nation united against early marriage

Across the world, every year 60mn young girls become brides before they are old enough to understand marriage and related responsibilities. Of this disturbingly large number, 1/3rd are from India. While we&

Everything depends on everything else in 2014: survey

Survey is flavour of the season, and everyone’s doing it, I am told by news channels and newspapers. Being the copycat I decided to copy-paste the idea and do a survey of my own. The survey sample included everyone from my neighbourhood, bar

Be careful on your journey across that highway

A road trip on the highways is generally considered a pleasurable experience and a perfect getaway with picturesque surroundings, wide roads, minimal traffic and hence less nuisance but all that fun can be short-lived if one does not remain vigila

Malala for Nobel was a noble idea

This is funny; like a group of boys playing together. First make chemical weapons, then find out a body which works to stop their use, and then give it the Nobel Peace Prize. In 2009, this prize went to Barack Obama, apparently for his efforts to

Those were the days my friend

You know your age has passed the half¬way house and it is all downhill from now on when: People tell you to take it easy, slow down, you are not getting any younger, lean back a bit - and you hate them for saying it. Everyone has advic

Breast cancer and reproductive rights

Research across the globe on the risk factors that cause breast cancer has noted lifestyle as the key explanation. WHO also recognises that increasing urbanisation and adoption of western lifestyle contribute to the increasing incidence of breast

How RTI amendment bill was stopped

It is indeed “Sweet September” for an enthusiast of Right to Information. The struggle and sustained advocacy paid off when the government decided to refer the RTI amendment bill to the parliamentary standing committee on personal, pub

India`s rupee woes and the governance deficit

The free fall that the rupee experienced in the last couple of months spooked the markets, the investors and the government. The government constantly kept assuring the markets that it was only an aberration but the reality is different. It defini

In NY, another Indo-Pak talk therapy

September 29 marks another day in the ‘frosty’ Indo-Pak relations. Frosty, in fact, has been the state of the weather on both the line of control (LoC) and the line of communication, despite the change of venues over the years (primari

An officer and a writer: beyond mundane bureaucratic notes

Shubha Sarma, an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer, is inspired by Tolstoy, Chekov, O Henry and Indian literary greats like Premchand and Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. Like these literary greats, Sarma has woven compelling narrative of sh

A week soaked in blood and gore

This week the sun went down and the night came riding in. The world went crazy. Madmen attacked a US naval base in the capital. Terrorists from Somalia mowed down nearly 70 people in a Nairobi mall even as crack troops prepared to launch an attack

World Gratitude Day? Er, come again?

Today is World Gratitude day. Seriously, I kid you not. Bet you had no idea. And why should we seeing as how we are generally so ungrateful and while we keep rabbiting on about counting our blessings we never really do that…until things go

Birthday of a leader

I am on a visit to Singapore. September 16 was the 90th birthday of Mr Lee Kuan Yew, considered the Founding Father of Singapore. He was the first prime minister when Singapore became independent in 1965 and stepped down in 1994, making way for yo

All you wanted to know about Syria - and some more

As portentous war clouds loom over the Arab belt, as global markets tumble on febrile fears over petroleum and as a sweaty world sits at the precipice of yet another potential calamity, in the US of A many sensitive and sensible folks must be rack

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