India to construct world’s highest railway line

Surpassing China’s Qinghai-Tiber railway line, India is now preparing to construct the world’s highest ever railway line. The defence ministry and the railway ministry have jointly undertaken the task of constructing... More

Madhesis ignore call to boycott Nepal local elections

The Madhesis, a people of recent Indian origin who had sworn that they would boycott the second phase of the Nepalese local body elections on June 28, ended up participating in... More

Indian Presidential Election: Dalit vs Dalit

Ever since the BJP named Ram Nath Kovind, a Dalit, as the National Democratic Alliance’s candidate for president, the Congress and other opposition political parties have been trying to come up... More

Indian President polls: BJP’s masterstroke

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah have delivered a political masterstroke in choosing Ram Nath Kovind as the party's candidate for the next Presidential polls in the... More

BJP’s surprise presidential candidate Ram Nath Kovind

Bharatiya Janata Party has come up with a surprise candidate for India’s next presidential election, Bihar’s Governor. While many names had been mulled over for the past month or so, Ram... More

Mamata sees conspiracy in Darjeeling chaos

West Bengal’s chief minister Mamata Banerjee sees a deep conspiracy behind the escalating chaos in Darjeeling. Speaking on Friday to the media in Kolkata, she said, the agitators in the hills... More

Sri Lankan Muslim identity and Buddhist extremism

Sri Lanka which in 2009 ended a long drawn civil war battling the Tamil Tiger rebels fighting for a separate state is now struggling to maintain religious harmony in the face... More

Will Maldives follow the Sri Lanka model?

Maldives is all agog with the presidential elections likely to be held in September 2018. Presidential elections are the main determinant of the country’s power play, though the 77-member parliament does... More

Perpetually abroad, Modi loses sight of the grassroots mauled by demonetization

With an insatiable thirst for foreign travel (over 64 jaunts since he came to power three years ago), India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi appears to have lost sight of India, particularly,... More

One Belt One Road: Bangladesh is willing but wary

Bangladesh finds itself between a rock and a hard place. On one side, there is China’s One Belt One Road initiative, which promises seamless connectivity to the rest of the world.... More

Unrest again in Darjeeling over separate Gorkhaland

Darjeeling faces unrest as the tussle between the West Bengal government and the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) has once again revived the demand for a separate Gorkha state. GJM has called... More

Fear grips Lankan Muslims as BBS appears defiant

A day after Sri Lanka police arrested five people including a member of an ultra nationalist Buddhist group for violence against Muslims, allegations are on the rise that hate crimes of... More

Challenges facing Nepal’s new Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba

On June 7, veteran politician Sher Bahadur Deuba of the Nepali Congress (NC) became Nepal’s 40th. Prime Minister and its tenth in the last ten years. For Deuba himself, it was... More

Sri Lanka Freedom Party at crossroads

A cheerless domestic situation, both political and economic, has put the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) led by President Maithripala Sirisena at crossroads. Its members are wondering whether they should stick... More

India mulls greater deployment of armor and Special Forces on borders

India is mulling greater deployment of armor and Special Forces on its borders with Pakistan and China in view of the sustained threat from those two countries, the Indian defense journal... More

Lanka faces floods and landslides with ethnic unity

Disasters and the subsequent suffering as a result of both man-made and natural calamities are nothing new to Sri Lankans. The island nation has seen two bloody Marxist insurgencies in the... More

The Budget is big: Does size matter?

Bangladesh’s Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith placed the annual national budget of the 2017-18 fiscal in parliament on Thursday, with an outlay of Tk 400,266 crore (Tk 4 trillion approx).... More

Will India go for war?

Indian strategists are divided on the issue of India embarking on immediate war with Pakistan. The hawkish are of the opinion that it’s time to show strength. They feel that the... More

Separation of the judiciary and deft manipulations

Former Chief Justice Mustafa Kamal had drawn up the verdict of the Masdar Hossain versus the State, regarding separation of the judiciary. Justice Kamal passed away two and a half years... More

Times of India survey brings out salient features of Modi’s support...

A survey conducted by the English and vernacular websites of the Times of India group on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s three years in office and his prospects in the next... More

Three years of ‘Big Bang’ politics

Narendra Modi has just completed three years as India's prime minister after he took the BJP-led NDA to power with a clear majority, the first time since 1984. Modi's three years have... More


The Lady takes aim at the UN

Myanmar’s restive western state of Rakhine is back in the news. And it is set to be a busy week for Rakhine matters. The military are consolidating their counter insurgency operations in Rakhine -- centered in the Mayu mountains... More

Accountability across the board -II

In his address to the Constituent Assembly on 11 August 1947, the Quaid said that “Jobbery, graft nepotism and bribe has to be put down with iron hand”. His vision of anti-corruption was reflected through “Prevention of Corruption Act... More

Two years into office, UNP-SLFP coalition government is...

It’s been two years since two of Sri Lanka’s largest political groupings - the United National Party (UNP) and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) - signed a MoU to cohabit in the government for two years to give... More

The US ready to turn Afghanistan into a...

After all the debate in the US on the Trump administration’s Afghanistan strategy, what we have today is a potentially destructive proposal to effect a full withdrawal and replace regular American forces with private contractors, which are nothing but... More

Another hornet’s nest stirred

The Modi government has developed a reputation to stir a hornet’s nest where one can be and should be avoided. With less than a month to go for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Myanmar visit, one of his controversy-prone ministers has... More


Trump’s Afghanistan policy

President Donald Trump's much touted Afghan strategy -- which is a U-turn on his original views -- is essentially a facelift of a tried, tested and failed... More

Spiral into chaos  

Historically speaking, Balochistan in general and the Baloch community in particular are secular. Even in traditional Baloch society, the mullah is not a revered figure. Instead, he... More

Standoff with China prompts revamp of India’s regional policies

The denouement of the dangerous India-China military standoff in Doklam near the Sikkim border is hard to predict. But on the diplomatic and geopolitical plane, one definite... More

Squeezed by an India-China Standoff, Bhutan Holds Its Breath

India’s main garrison in the Kingdom of Bhutan sits only 13 miles from a disputed border with China. There is a training academy, a military hospital, a... 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... More

Sign up for South Asian Monitor:

Enter your email and stay on top of things