Are the Rich Embarrassed by Their Riches?

October 15, 2021

The rich have always flaunted their wealth. It was rarely good enough to enjoy financial success, you had to be conspicuous about it. They build enormous homes for everyone to gawk at. They throw lavish parties. They commission paintings, statues, biographies. They endow institutions so that their...

Unnatural Disasters: India’s Environmental Mismanagement

October 07, 2021

"If we don't learn from the tragedies of the past, we are cursed to repeat them in the future," proclaims the home page of the website of the Himachal Pradesh State Disaster Management Authority. To ensure that the irony is not lost on either the creator or the visitor of the website, just...

India Must Back Afghans Fighting the Taliban

September 14, 2021

Kabul has fallen again to the Taliban. Surprisingly, so has the Panjshir Valley where the legendary Ahmad Shah Massoud defied both the Soviets and the Taliban. Even more surprisingly, India has stayed silent so far. It was in 1996 that the Taliban took over Kabul the last time around. Following...

Liberalizing India’s Economy Is Critical for Global Stability

September 07, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic is increasing inequality globally and even advanced economies have not been spared. Before the pandemic began in 2020, inequality was on the rise. Decades of globalization, loose monetary policy and the rise of oligopolies have contributed to this phenomenon. In many ways,...

Can the Taliban Guarantee Security for Afghanistan’s Neighbors?

September 06, 2021

The Taliban's second takeover since 1996 is taking place in a regional context that poses challenges for the regime but also opens up new opportunities. Twenty-five years ago, the Taliban took over a country largely destroyed by civil war; today, they find a reasonably functioning state. At...

When Truth No Longer Matters

September 04, 2021

An effective communicator with a questionable past builds a successful campaign as an outsider disinterested in everyday, run-of-the-mill politics. He smartly taps into the fears and anxieties of voters and projects himself as the only person who can fix the supposedly broken system. Despite...

The State Versus the People: Who Controls the Internet?

August 31, 2021

India’s government and Twitter have been fighting a legal battle over compliance with domestic laws. In June 2020, the tech giant failed to make key local appointments required under India’s new information technology rules. Twitter has more than 22 million users in India and was recently...

Are Online Spaces Safe for Queer People in India?

August 28, 2021

Indian queer cyberspace has evolved drastically over the years. The internet arrived in India in 1995, and high-speed broadband technologies started only in 2004. Before that, queer mobilizing mostly took place through informal and clandestine channels. It was only in 1991 that the first Indian...

India’s Highway Construction Is in the Fast Lane

August 23, 2021

When experts look back at the early 2000s, they will observe that India embarked on a construction spree to develop its transport infrastructure. The country is emulating what the United States and Europe did in the previous century and what China and East Asia have done more recently....

What Starts in Afghanistan Does Not Stay in Afghanistan

August 16, 2021

The Taliban’s offensive in Afghanistan has shifted the Central Asian playing field on which China, India and the United States compete with rival infrastructure-driven approaches. At first glance, a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan would give China a 2:0 advantage against the US and India, but...

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