A leading Syrian cleric, Grand Mufti Ahmed Bader Eddin Mohammad Adib Hassoun, Syria’s highest religious authority, has confirmed India’s suspicion that an international terrorist network had a major role in triggering the latest bout of violence in... More
It was in summer of 1987 that I first visited Afghan capital Kabul. Journalists from 26 countriesassembled in Moscow and then were flown to Kabul to attend a conference on a reconciliation program and see on ground its outreach. In the name of reconciliation... More
Begum Khaleda Zia, chairperson of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), has declared the party’s Vision 2030. To many, it came too early with election scheduled for 2019. However, the party has made a smart move and tactically... More
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
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
In a recent twist of events, the Afghan war seems to have turned away from a ‘war on terror’ on the Taliban to a ‘war of cooperation’ with the Taliban. Face-to-face meetings between the US officials and Taliban in Qatar and the Taliban’s calculated and successful attacks against the Islamic State rather than either... More
Without significant progressin the political scenefor years Imran Khan was mercilessly mocked by many, but none so viciously as Declan Walsh, the Guardian's former correspondent for Pakistan. He chosethe ultimate in ridiculing Imran in an August 31, 2005 articlewhen he called him "a miserable politician whoseideas and affiliations since entering politics in 1996 have... More
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
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
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
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.
A first... More
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
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