The Government Of-By-And For The Slogan, Hindustan Times [Saturday, March 26th, 2016]

At its recent meeting, the National Executive of the Bharatiya Janata Party passed a political resolution, a passage of which read: ‘Our Constitution describes India as Bharat also, [hence] refusal to chant victory to Bharat is tantamount to disrespect to our Constitution itself. Bharat Mata ki Jai is not merely a slogan. It was a [...]

 
 
line

 
  The Mysterious Makeover of Mr Modi, The Telegraph [Sunday, March 20th, 2016]

As Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi was known to run a tight ship. He was in total command of his Cabinet, and interacted regularly with senior civil servants. He had some special areas of focus; such as attracting new investment, building better roads, and assuring regular water and power supply to farmers. In these [...]

 
 
line

 
  A Wish List Revisited, The Telegraph [Saturday, November 17th, 2012]

In an essay published just before the General Elections of 2009, I had argued that for Indian democracy to become more focused and effective, four things needed to happen: First, the Congress party had to rid itself of its dependence on a single family. Rahul Gandhi had a right to be in politics, but not [...]

 
 
line

 
  NO GLOATING, SCAPEGOATING, Hindustan Times [Wednesday, April 1st, 2009]

Every year, in November, the American magazine Newsweek departs from its focus on current events to publish a special number which examines national and regional trends that cannot be slotted within the weekly cycle of news. Writing in the last such issue, the editor of a Delhi newspaper (not this one) wrote that ‘Indian foreign [...]

 
 
line

 
  THE TRIPLE TRAGEDY OF THE INDIAN MUSLIMS, The Telegraph [Saturday, October 25th, 2008]

An influential editor from Delhi, visiting Bangalore, hosted a dinner for some local politicians, and invited me along. Among the netas present was the Karnataka Youth Congress president, the spokesman for H. D. Deve Gowda’s Janata Dal (Secular), and an office-bearer of the Bharatiya Janata Party. The conversation turned to the history of communal violence [...]

 
 
line

 
  TOWARDS A GENDER-SENSITIVE CIVIL CODE, Hindustan Times [Thursday, December 13th, 2007]

Article 44 of the Constitution of India reads: ‘The State shall endeavour to secure for the citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India’. The first Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, and the first Law Minister, Dr B. R. Ambedkar, were both modernists who wished to reform archaic personal laws and bring [...]

 
 
line

 
  A PLAGUE ON BOTH YOUR HOUSES, The Telegraph [Saturday, May 15th, 2004]

Bangalore voted on Sunday the 20th of April, the first round of polling. Anticipating crowds in the morning, my wife and I went to the neighbourhood booth in the afternoon. Outside, the names of the candidates were pasted on the walls. There were a dozen candidates in all but here, as in many other parts [...]

 
 
line