The Foreign Desk
Social media is awash today with messages marking the first anniversary of Narendra Modi’s swearing in as prime minister. Modi himself is celebrating with tweets to his on-line followers and others that make exaggerated claims about his government’s successes.
Amid all the trending, it is worth noting that the prime minister’s communications with his electorate, and the [...]
Make in India has been the main slogan drummed out by Narendra Modi and his ministers and bureaucrats for many months, but it is surely time for that to be turned around into a reality by India’s prime minister adopting a personal slogan to Make Things Happen. There are few significant results from the Make [...]
America’s ambassador to India certainly did not mean to deliver a verdict on the first year of Narendra Modi’s time as prime minister when he referred on May 6 to the “potentially chilling effects” of current government threats to restrict or close organisations such as the Ford Foundation and Greenpeace.
But as I sat listening to a [...]
The Narendra Modi government’s image problems began towards the end of last year when arch Hindu nationalists within the BJP’s Sangh Parivar (family of organisations) voiced extreme views about minorities such as Muslims, which Modi took a long time to rebut. One minister implied that everyone apart from Hindus were born illegitimately. There were also [...]
Nepal’s devastating earthquake, with over 4,300 people dead was, as has been widely commented over the weekend, a disaster waiting to happen. This small and impoverished country of 28m people lies in a prime earthquake zone – international experts were in Kathmandu just over a week ago predicting an imminent disaster.
And it happened in and [...]
Back from a mysterious 56-day “sabbatical” abroad, Rahul Gandhi, the Congress Party’s reluctant leader, has seized on a political battle over India’s land legislation, and the financial plight of poor farmers, as subjects for re-establishing himself as a possibly credible politician.
He has made two major public appearances – at a public rally in Delhi on [...]
Narendra Modi has taken India’s defence industry by surprise with a totally unexpected decision to buy 36 Rafale fighter jet aircraft, probably costing around $4.5bn, from Dassault Aviation in a deal that is being negotiated directly between the Indian and French governments.
Modi is on an official visit to France. He said after holding talks with [...]
….and Beijing makes moves on possible Afghan Taliban peace talks
China is winning, of that there can now be no doubt at a time when most world powers are falling in with its plans, either in kow-tow mode like the UK or with a somewhat more upright stance like India, or somewhere in-between.
The weakest-looking country in [...]
The Modi government has at last had a couple of parliamentary successes with two urgent pieces of legislation covering auctions of coal and other mining leases being passed on March 20 at the end of the first part of the Budget session. That was the result of political haggling and deal making with opposition parties that [...]
The Indian government is adept at shooting itself in the foot, especially on social issues. In the past three days, it has done this spectacularly by trying – and failing – to impose an international ban on an hour-long film, India’s Daughter, about an horrific and fatal rape that shocked the world when it took place on [...]
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