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From India’s wars, five lessons for the present – analysis

Having spent eight years researching and writing in a focused manner on war and conflict in independent India, it is time to distil five big lessons for a diverse constituency of stakeholders in India’s national security matrix. These range from the policymaker and the practitioner to the academic and the common citizen. As India matures as a democracy and its ...

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Is the economy turning? | HT Editorial – editorials

The Indian economy did better than most economists expected in the second quarter (July-September) of the current fiscal year. A GDP contraction of 7.5%, after a massive 23.9% in the June quarter, is, by all means, a significant sequential improvement. It shows that the June quarter number was a reflection of the 68-day lockdown rather than any massive damage to ...

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How will literature grapple with 2020? – columns

We’re aware of the impact of coronavirus on our language. Not only have new words been coined but the use of older ones has proliferated almost beyond belief. Perhaps this is why the Oxford English Dictionary has not identified the word of the year for 2020. As Katherine Connor Martin, the company’s head of product, says: “What struck the team ...

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In defence of the right of women to choose – columns

Twenty years ago, Asif Iqbal wanted to marry the love of his life, Ranu Kulsheshtra. Neither wanted to convert and, so, the Special Marriage Act (SMA) enacted in 1954 for interfaith couples — and those who wanted a secular marriage — was the obvious, and only, option. But the marriage officer at Noida wasn’t ready to risk what he called ...

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Banks: Governance, not ownership, is key – analysis

One sentence from a recent internal committee report of Reserve Bank of India — “large corporate/industrial houses may be allowed as promoters of banks” — has generated an intense debate. To put it a little simplistically, those in favour of the suggestion argue that this will bring much-needed capital and competition while those against it claim this will lead to ...

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A breakthrough in banking reforms – analysis

The Internal Working Group (IWG) constituted by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to review ownership guidelines and governance structures in respect to private sector banks has submitted its report. The report is grounded, logical, clear, consistent, and does not fudge or pass up on issues that require coordination outside of RBI’s ambit. It has the courage to explore and challenge ...

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Tarun Gogoi: The man who brought peace and growth to Assam – analysis

One of the first things that struck anyone who met Tarun Gogoi, whether in or out of power, was his smile. But behind that beaming exterior was an astute political mind and a strong will. Gogoi, who came up the ranks of the Congress, had a finger on the public pulse. He was all that we know — a three-term ...

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Planning for a post-Covid world – editorials

The Group of Twenty (G20) ended its annual summit without deliverables, but with a sense that global leaders have begun shifting their gaze to a post-Covid-19 world. The G20 has been largely missing in action through much of the pandemic. The inability to have physical interactions inhibited genuine diplomatic outreach. More dama-ging was the every-government-for-itself scramble that followed the outbreak, ...

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Chanakya: India’s new template for the neighbourhood – columns

On Thursday, Indian security forces thwarted a bid by terrorists belonging to the Jaish-e-Mohammed — who, intelligence reports suggested, had been sent in to conduct a terror attack ahead of the district-level elections in Jammu and Kashmir. There is little doubt that this could not have happened without a green signal from Pakistan’s establishment — which wants to ensure violence ...

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When citizens act against their interest | Opinion – analysis

As the world continues to grapple with the most extraordinary health crisis of recent times, more than 200,000 people have been fined for not wearing masks and more than 8,000 fined for not maintaining the required physical distance in public spaces in Delhi between September 7 and November 16. And this represents only those who were caught. It appears that ...

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