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...

Super Bowl Fans Tackle Poetry

February 09, 2021

On January 20, a star was born in Washington, DC, during the inauguration of the 46th president of the United States — a 78-year-old white man taking over from a 74-year-old sore loser. Before the swearing-in, an unknown 22-year-old black female strode up to the podium. She embodied the...

A History of Indian Conservatism

December 23, 2020

At the time of independence from British rule in 1947, India's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, adopted a mode of governance that came to be known as Nehruvian socialism. State control of industrial production and government interference in all spheres of life came to define this era and,...

India’s New Education Policy Is Hodgepodge

October 20, 2020

The union cabinet of the government of India recently announced its 2020 National Education Policy (NEP). This is the first education policy developed by a non-Congress party government since independence. Coming 34 years after the last formulation of a fully-fledged education policy, Indians...

Kashmir’s History and Future Meet in Literature

September 24, 2020

For as long as one can remember, the stunningly beautiful valley of Kashmir has been a tinder box of clashing ideologies and religious beliefs. In the not too distant past, it was known as the land of Rishis, holy seers who combined the profound philosophies of Hinduism, Buddhism and Sufism to...

The State of the Indian Republic

September 22, 2020

On August 15, India celebrated 73 years of independence. By some metrics, the country has been a fantastic success. Multi-ethnic states such as Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union collapsed in the early 1990s. In contrast, India is still united despite its bewildering diversity in terms of religion,...

Why Punjabis in Pakistan Have Abandoned Punjabi

July 14, 2020

When Pakistan was formed in 1947, it included two parts: West and East Pakistan. These two parts of the country were approximately 1,600 kilometers apart. Between them was India. The two parts of Pakistan were divided by more than distance. The biggest linguistic group in East Pakistan were...

Han and Hindu Nationalism Come Face to Face

July 09, 2020

As dusk fell on June 15, a bloody clash broke out between Chinese and Indian soldiers in the Galwan Valley on the northwest China-India border, where a tributary of the Indus flows westward from Aksai Chin to Ladakh. In line with China’s recent expansionist policy elsewhere, its military had...

The Lockdown in India Reveals the Nation Has Lost Its Soul

July 03, 2020

This is not yet another article on the sorry exodus of millions of Indians from cities that played out on primetime TV when the coronavirus pandemic led to a lockdown. It is not a piece about the government, or about politics or economics. It is neither critical nor sacerdotal. It is not about...

Five Urgent Economic Reforms for India

May 05, 2020

US President Donald Trump had already taken a sledgehammer to the export-led growth model. With the COVID-19 pandemic rousing primal passions, hitherto unfashionable ideas are emerging like Dracula from their grave. Protecting infant industries to improve future competitive advantage or strategic...

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