Until recently, politics in West Bengal was dictated by ideology, development issues and muscle power. But the latest trends show a paradigm shift, with religion and identity increasingly taking centre stage. The recent communal... More
With its scenic mountains and stunning Buddhist monasteries on hilltops, Bhutan is a traveller's dream and described by some as the last Shangri-La - a mystical beautiful place where everything is perfection.
The country's capital,... More
The ‘India vs. Bangladesh’ syndrome
Economist Amartya Sen has often drawn comparisons among the South Asian countries, where Bangladesh is well ahead of both India and Pakistan in almost all human development indicators. That is... More
There are seemingly as many interpretations as there are analysts in Nepal pouring over Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oliâ€™s three-day state visit to India starting April 6.
One reason for such diverse views on Oliâ€™s... More
Â Kanak Mani Dixit is a pre-eminent voice for democracy and freedom of the press in South Asia. An outspoken critic of the establishment, he was arrested in 2016. Notable rights bodies describe this as... More
The governmentâ€™s bid to ease tensions with China has been met with some criticism, particularly over a leaked memo to officials telling them to stay away from events that commemorate the 60th anniversary of... More
An agreement between India and the Indian Ocean island of Seychelles to build a military base has run into rough weather. Signed during Prime Minister Narendra Modiâ€™s visit to the island in March 2015,... More
Over the past fortnight, Sri Lanka has witnessed a surge in violence targeting Muslims, their properties, and places of worship. It prompted President Maithripala Sirisena to declare an island-wide state of emergency on March... More
In 2016, India approved just $157.7 million of combined investments in Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. Over the same period, China approved $5.7 billion worth. Malaysia and Indonesia were the biggest recipients, with... More
Almost four years after Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his term with a â€œNeighbourhood Firstâ€ moment, by inviting leaders of all South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) countries to his swearing-in ceremony, Indiaâ€™s... More
The strategic environment in the Indian Ocean is changing fast. In the last few years we have seen growing strategic rivalry between major powers such as China and India as they expand their roles... More
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat has claimed that his organisation can raise a combat forceÂ in three daysÂ whereas itâ€™ll take the Indian army about six to seven months to prepare for a war.... More
The mystery of the Supreme Court judges in Male promoting democracy in their beloved country is deepening. One of the three judges who gave the ruling to destabilize the political situation had unaccounted money... More
Pakistan has decided to hug Russia tightly as the United States continues its hostile policy towards the only nuclear armed Muslim-majority country, diplomatic sources said.
Senior officials at the foreign ministry told The Nation that... More
The Trump administration has made a significant overture to Beijing this week over the war in Afghanistan. On Tuesday, during the testimony before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Assistant Secretary of Defense for... More
Hunger is a constant for the 800 Rohingya living in Salehdi, a refugee camp in northern India, but the situation is especially dire for pregnant women and for mothers and their newborn children.
The women... More
Temple and church bells started ringing. Ships berthed in Colombo harbour blew their sirens. It happened 70 years ago at sharp 12 midnight on 4 February 1948 to mark the dawn of Independence to... More
Every budget has a context, every budget must have a goal. The context of Budget 2018-19 was graphically described in the Economic Survey: The macro-economic situation was vulnerable, the exchange rate of the rupee... More
Itâ€™s really the Americans who worry obsessively about other peoplesâ€™ fragile states, not us. They feel threatened by them as places where terrorism breeds and some target practice is legitimate. Unlike us, the Americans... More
Â A fortnight ago, the government did the smart thing by distancing itself ostentatiously from the â€œmischievousâ€ media reports that appeared totally out of the blue to the effect that China has beefed up its... More
While the US has been cultivating India as its major ally in the region in what the US officials have tacitly called ‘containment’ of China, prospects of this cultivation have become brighter ever since the recent out-break of trade-war between the US and China.
While Indian and US interests strongly... More
James Brien Comey Jr served as Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for four years till fired by President Donald Trump on May 9, 2017. Trump initially claimed this was because of Comey's mishandling of the investigation into the private email of Hillary Clinton. The overriding perception... More
The UN Human Rights Committee (UNHRC), which went into the trial of former Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed had listed the flaws in it and asked the Maldivian government to release him to enable him to contest the September 2018 Presidential election.
But the government on Sunday rejected the UNHRC’s observations and recommendations... More
It’s pretty odd to think that Bangladesh elections should be of any interest to China and India given the complete lack of its strategic value. However, Bangladesh maybe becoming a reluctant pawn of sorts in a regional ‘great game’.
China’s rising influence in the region and India’s relative decline in what... More
Biplab Deb is a BJP chief minister with a difference. In a 40-minute interview with this writer last week, he did not mention even once any of the usual saffron agenda -- Ram Mandir, beef, illegal migration from Bangladesh. "My agenda is development, development, development all the way," he... More
As US President Donald Trump decides whether to reauthorize the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which he has long wanted to exit or renegotiate, Iranian authorities have announced they will be getting help with their nuclear program from China.
"Some negotiations have been held on mutual cooperation and building small nuclear... More
The American think tank, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, had featured a riveting ‘curtain-raiser’ to the 2014 poll in India entitled Does Good Economics Mean Good Politics In India? The essay appeared in December 2013 and I’d carefully stored it in my archives, as a fairly prescient analysis of... More
I will not reach any deal that would go against the national interest of Nepal,” K P Sharma Oli, the prime minister of Nepal, reportedly assured parliamentarians in Kathmandu earlier this week, before heading out to India. That such questions should be asked and answered is a definitive sign... More
The long political transition in Nepal has come to an end with the successful completion of local, provincial and federal elections. A new phase of history beckons Nepal as it has adopted federalism under the new constitution promulgated in 2015. The achievement of economic prosperity has now been prioritized... More
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... More