Fresh start in J & K

The Congress loudmouths have found fault with the appointment of an interlocutor for Kashmir, taunting the Modi Government if that meant the failure of its tough, no-talks stance. Notably, before the appointment of the interlocutor the party had been pressing for the resumption of talks with all the relevant stakeholders in Kashmir. Regardless, the belated initiative of the Modi Government to appoint Dineshwar Sharma, a former head of the Intelligence

Hope for revival

A comprehensive package to boost economic growth was on the cards, especially after the rather poor numbers last quarter. Thanks to the disruption caused by the introduction of the revolutionary Goods and Services Tax, this had become all the more necessary. In the event, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has not disappointed. The stimulus package will go some distance to boost the sentiment. In the main, the public sector banks,

Anthemic issues

Is the expression of patriotism as consequential as its inherent feeling? Do citizens, in every step of their life, have to prove their Indianness to be understood as a true citizen? In a ruling last year, the Supreme Court had made it mandatory to play the national anthem at movie theatres prior to the screening of every film. This order was met with protest from civilians joined by even those

Mersal madness

The TN BJP, by making loud noises about the latest Vijay-starrer for some, albeit untrue, references to the GST, demonetisation, has ensured much wider publicity for Mersal both within and outside the usual catchment area of Tamil cinema. This was foolish, to say the least. In any case, it is not the business of some low-level party apparatchiks in Chennai to protest the contents of a movie which had been

Bitter pills

Indiscriminate sale of illegal medications in India has become a global concern. India is believed to be the ‘pharmacy of the world’ due to its large pharmaceutical industry. While it has among the highest per capita sales of antibiotics globally, it also has the high levels of antimicrobial resistance. To give the slips to the monitoring agencies, the pharmaceutical companies have derived a hoodwinking way: They have started manufacturing single


Men beware; women don’t want to take it lying down any more. The harrowing reality of sexual harassment has been brushed under the carpet for far too long. When sexual allegations first surfaced against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein, few imagined it would snowball into a movement of sorts. The Weinstein saga started just like yet another case of impropriety, wrongdoing and misuse of position of power. However, the plight of

Treat 'em traditionally

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s pitch for affordable and accessible healthcare through the system of ayurveda to usher in an ‘ayurveda revolution’ makes eminent sense especially because of the magnitude of healthcare challenges in the country and the inadequacy of allopathy to meet those adequately. There can be little doubt that the corporate sector needs to invest substantially in boosting ayurveda. The need for more extensive research into ayurvedic practices and

Controversial & contentious

The manner in which the Taj Mahal controversy has been raked up first by its shocking exclusion from the UP tourism department’s list of famous monuments and then by a firebrand BJP legislator Sangeet Som calling it ‘a blot’ on Indian culture and history smacks of the BJP’s tendency to hit self-goals. Needlessly, a new controversy has been fuelled with the Opposition and the sensationalist media vying with one another

Poll predicaments

Simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and the State Legislative Assemblies are beginning to appear a distinct possibility. Recently, the Chief Election Commissioner stated that the Commission would be logistically equipped to hold simultaneous polls by the middle of next year, in September 2018 to be precise. This was in a response to a specific question from the Centre on the Commission’s preparedness for polls in tandem. The EC response

US and them

The US has been flexing its muscles with Pakistan of late, essentially to pressurise Islamabad to deal strongly with the Haqqani network which it sees as a terror threat to the Americans. The impression in India that the Trump administration would force the Pakistanis to close down terror training camps and to put a lid on infiltration of terrorists into India through Kashmir seems utterly overdrawn. The recent visit of

Slow-paced justice

In May 2008, 14-year-old Aarushi, the only child of Rajesh and Nupur Talwar, is found murdered at their home in Noida. Since their domestic help Hemraj is found to be missing, the finger of suspicion is pointed at him. The case comes under media glare as his slain body is found on the terrace the next day. It shows shoddy investigation: the absence of a thorough check of the spot