A handful of Kolkata’s Jews whose 19th century synagogues are taken care...

It took a few minutes to locate the Neveh Shalome synagogue in Kolkata’s congested and busy Brabourne Road business district. The synagogue, which is taken care of by Muslims, seems to be desperately trying to make its presence... More

Revisiting Jaffna’s mystique past and its famed Hindu sage Yogaswami’s ashram

It is during the busy Christmas week that I boarded the night bus to Jaffna and taken to a world away from the glitter and glamour of seasonal festivities in the Colombo, which, depending on your temperament, could be just More

Bookswap Sri Lanka; the miracle of multiplying books

Ever walked into a book store, saw a whole heap of books you wanted but realized that there was a mismatch between your want and your purse? Well, among people who fall into the category of bookaholics this may be More

In a Delhi upscale neighbourhood, Bangladeshi immigrants indulge in hashish, Hindi and...

The diminutive man with wispy beard slipped into a cream sleeveless vest. He tugged and straightened his long white kurta that he wore over a lungi with horizontal blue stripes before producing a comb that he More

Have breakfast at midnight at Gulshan’s Butler’s Chocolate Cafe

Chocolate lovers alert! There are all chances that you’ll go on an overdrive and OD on the decadent delights at this smart cafe tucked away in the northern extremities of Gulshan, Dhaka. Butler’s Chocolate Cafe offers More

Enjoy Colombo’s Blue Swan with coffee, snacks, old-world charm and loads of...

Colombo’s café scene is much like mushrooms that keep sprouting constantly. Coffee shops is the in thing now. Tea, that colonial heritage drink the British introduced almost two centuries ago, has kept itself to the fields, with... More


By reaching out to Taliban, Iran makes presence felt in Afghanistan...

The very nature of the conflict in Afghanistan has made it almost impossible for the neighbouring countries to remain aloof from it or maintain some distance, even a calculated one. For one thing, the conflict is no longer just between the US and Taliban or the US and al-Qaeda. The ISIS, known as IS-K in Afghanistan, has established its presence, which has forced many countries—Russia, China and Iran—to change... More

The sorry state of Pakistan’s police

The imperial form of police infrastructure that Pakistan inherited was deliberately created to serve the British rulers rather than promote harmony, security and adherence to the law. The 1861 Police Act has never changed except for minor amendments. Even the new laws introduced by the provinces retain more or less the essence of the original imperial law. The persisting culture is to ensure that the weak remain subservient to... More

Bangladesh’s position on global terrorism index has improved: Australian agency CPES

An Australian outfit, Centre for Peace and Economic Studies (CPES), has stated that Bangladesh has gone up four positions in the global terrorism index, according to it’s ranking. Several other countries in South Asia have gone down in terms of vulnerability, including Pakistan and India. Nepal, Bhutan and Sri Lanka have also improved their standings in this index. CPES has reported that introduction of modern education in madrassas, investment in... More

How the Taliban have become leading actor in Afghan peace talks

While the Taliban have established their domination both politically and militarily in almost half of Afghanistan, the consequent talks with the US and the way they have progressed show that they are already in a commanding position. They certainly have become the leading actor in these talks not just because they are the ones fighting the war against the US and Afghan forces, but also because they are directing... More

Exploiting Pakistan’s ‘Gold Coast’

The emerging markets of Central Asia require that a sea-land (south-south) dimension to support the north-south axis be added for expansion, otherwise all facilities and opportunities are likely to be clogged because of unplanned urban population expansion. The long coastline with stretches of virgin beaches and adjacent vast empty hinterland require well-planned commercial exploitation. It is personally satisfying that recommendations made in my articles of nearly three decades ago,... More



The fourth summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), held in Kathmandu on August 30 and 31, was “not fruitful” because of the inherent “weakness” of the regional inter-state institution,... More