Bhutan EC releases schedule for 3rd NA elections

The Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB) released the election schedule for the third National Assembly elections at a press conference Saturday. The registered political parties intending to contest the Primary Round can now start submitting its Letter... More

Doklam a year on: Bhutan more worried about Indian than China

Last week, an Indian parliamentary panel fluttered the dovecotes in Thimphu – Bhutan’s capital – by recommending New Delhi encourage Bhutan to deploy more soldiers in the disputed Doklam area, where a year ago several hundred Indian... More

How Bhutan’s monarchy is unique

Responding to one of the graduates' question on the form of monarchy in Bhutan before it was reinstated as the constitutional democratic monarchy at the ongoing National Graduates Orientation Programme (NGOP) in Thimphu, former chairperson of the... More

Bhutan’s LDC graduation likely to be deferred to 2023

Bhutan has sought a deferral of its LDC (Least Developed Country) graduation year to 2023 from 2021. The United Nation’s Committee for Development Policy and the Economic and Social Council have approved the proposal. The proposal will now... More

Bhutan -1 deployed into low earth orbit

Bhutan’s first satellite CubeSat Bhutan-1 was deployed from International Space Station (ISS) into the low earth orbit Friday. This comes after the release of Bhutan-1 along with CubeSats of the Philippines and Malaysia into ISS on June 29. Officials... More

Interim government appointed in Bhutan

The King of Bhutan granted a Kasho appointing the interim government Thursday. According to the Article 19 (1) of the Constitution of Bhutan, it states, “Whenever the National Assembly is dissolved, the Druk Gyalpo shall appoint an Interim... More

Modern technology is slowly killing the mood in the ‘happiest country in...

For years, the small Asian nation of Bhutan has defined success not through its economy, but through happiness. The Buddhist nation pioneered the idea of “Gross National Happiness” to measure the country’s well-being, and supposedly, its prime minister... More

Bhutan Airlines receives the second airbus319

With the arrival of the second Airbus 319 on August 4 in Paro, the Bhutan Airlines now has a fleet of two aircraft. Two Airbus 319 are on lease for four years. Bhutan Airlines signed the lease agreement for... More

2017 records highest int’l leisure tourist arrivals

Bhutan recorded the highest international leisure arrivals last year with 62,272 visitors, according to Bhutan Tourism Monitor 2017. This represents a growth in international leisure arrivals of 14.1 percent over the previous year. Of the 71,417 international arrivals,... More

Bhutan and Bangladesh: A story of two nations connected by a shared...

On July 23, 2018, Bhutan received a package of medicines in Dhaka from the Government of Bangladesh, symbolising the handing-over of 258 essential medicines to Bhutan, which will be delivered to the Ministry of Health this year... More

Bhutan has more than 709 million MT in carbon stock

Bhutan’s carbon stock, carbon that has been stored in the biomass, is 709 million MT. That is including 188 million MT of carbon stored in forests soils as organic matter. The stock could be more as the study... More

Curtains fall on Bhutan National Assembly

Marking the successful completion of a decade of democracy, the second National Assembly dissolved Wednesday afternoon with an offering of Tashi Moenlam and Zhabten in the National Assembly hall. The members folded their blue kabneys, removed their patags... More

Bhutan for Life Secretariat Office opened

Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay and agriculture minister Yeshey Dorji launched the secretariat office for the Bhutan for Life project at the WWF Bhutan office yesterday. The secretariat office will manage the BFL fund, USD 43 million, that will... More

In a high-stakes dance, China charms Bhutan

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou’s recent three-day visit to Bhutan failed to galvanize much media attention outside of the immediate region. But seasoned observers saw the senior envoy’s tour as a renewed Chinese charm offensive to... More

Women politicians in Bhutan share their challenges

Of the 188 people who will represent the 47 constituencies from four political parties in the primary election for the National Assembly, only 19 are women, taking the women candidate percentage to 10.1 percent. This was revealed recently... More

India to build 4-lane highway along Bhutan border

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Saturday said the Centre has agreed in-principle to construct a four-lane highway along the Indo-Bhutan border. "The new connectivity would bring in revolutionary changes not only in connectivity, but also in trade... More

Bhutan’s lower house to dissolve for general election

The National Assembly of Bhutan, the country's lower house of bicameral Parliament, will dissolve on Aug. 1, 2018 to make way for the general election. The house, consists of 32 members from the ruling People's Democratic Party (PDP)... More

Chinese minister visits Bhutan in first high-level interaction since Doklam standoff

China’s Vice Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou was in Bhutan this week for a two-day visit, marking the highest-level Chinese diplomatic interaction with the Bhutanese government since last year’s standoff between the two countries on a piece of... More

China enticing Bhutan, the last standing Indian ally to join OBOR Project

Will Bhutan strike a friendship with China and participate in its OBOR Project? To ease out tensions between China and Bhutan, both nations discussed their border disputes during a two-day visit by the vice foreign minister of... More

Bhutan inching closer to China, India falls flat

In a very surprising political move, China-the arch rival of India has invited Bhutan to join the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and share its “development dividends”. Beijing hinted Bhutan this Tuesday, a day after a senior Chinese... More

China seeks Bhutan border cooperation after India spat

China and Bhutan should work together to ensure peace along their border and keep pushing talks on the issue, a senior Chinese diplomat said during a rare visit to the country, following an ugly spat with India... More


India’s multi alignment challenge 

This is clearly the big diplomatic season for India and its travel-driven Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Chinese defence minister Wei Fenghe's visit to India (Aug 21-24) is a hugely important event, coming as it does after PM Modi and Chinese president Xi Jinping defused the long military stand-off at Doklam through informal summits and after... More

To forge their peace, Afghan Taliban wage their war

While the latest Taliban attack on the city of Ghazni in Afghanistan has led many in the West, especially the mainstream media, to conclude that no peace talks with the Taliban can bring peace, these analysis seem to have completely missed the whole points of talks as they are going on: the Taliban are... More

Has digital media changed politics in Bangladesh?

Political nostalgia in Bangladesh centres around public and street agitations. It begins with the language movement of 1952 which defined the basic parameters of national aspiration. The next station of political memory is the 1962 student’s movement against Gen. Ayub Khan’s martial law regime imposed in 1958. It ended in 1969 with the most glorified... More

Accountability begins at home

A democratic form of government being accountable to the people, the elected representatives are accountable to the people who elect them. Our enduring constant crisis in governance stems from our inept and corrupt rulers trampling the essential pillars of good governance, rule of law and accountability. This gives rise to unbridled and widespread corruption,... More

Bangladesh: A social media driven state?

It’s not easy to have a calm conversation in Bangladesh. Everyone is rushing to make a comment, observe and abuse. Or make a counter to all that. Anything that requires critical thought is discarded and the instant reaction is the most common form of response. In a society not unduly famous for pondering, Bangladesh... More


Bleak times for freedom of expression, whether emergency or not

Its time to stop the nitpicking. All that hair-splitting about whether what we are witnessing in India today is classical fascism or not – stop it. The argument that this is not like the Emergency of 1975 – completely irrelevant. Those bookish notions belong to seminar rooms and academic discussions, where high-minded... More

India’s social-media ‘lynch mobs’ pose growing threat

Social-media platforms are often criticized for their susceptibility to toxic dialogue and vicious attacks. It is a problem that India knows well. Just ask External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, whose recent vilification by members and supporters of her own ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is a case in point. Swaraj has developed a... More

The new trade order

Since the start of the year, U.S. President Donald Trump has lashed out at allies and adversaries alike on trade. Often, as with India, the U.S. has pushed for enhanced security cooperation at the same time it declared trade relations a national security threat. The belligerence has left many baffled. Some pointers A first... More

One day does not an election make

The much-awaited Gazipur city election is over, the “we-knew-it-from-before” polls results are upon us, the “impartiality” of the police and the “neutrality” of the civil administration have once again been demonstrated, the never-too-late-to-follow “certificate” of the Election Commission has been delivered and, of course, our democracy now stands “strengthened”. As some would have... More



Gorkhaland, Mamata and the Chinese factor

Just a few days ago I warned two young student leaders in Darjeeling of West Bengal, against the violent movement which has started there for a separate Gorkhaland. I told them in no way should they support this demand. This has multifarious geo-political risks. If a Gorkhaland state is formed, this will... More