Some knaves and fools did become CECs.
“THERE is no use making the tenure of the election commissioner a fixed and secure tenure if there is no provision in the constitution to prevent either a fool or a knave or a person who is likely to be under the thumb of the executive. My provision — I must admit — does not […]
A new form of censorship has emerged, targeting the foreign author
BOOK banning is akin to book burning, emblematic of Hitler’s Germany. It assumes various forms — ban under the Customs Act, 1962, to prevent its import into the country; under the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973; the extra-legal fiat by state officials to publishers and booksellers to suppress its circulation; mob violence that vandalises authors’ homes […]
India acts as though there are no limits to federal powers.
ALL federations make foreign affairs a central subject. But none render the states as dependent on the centre as India does. Chief ministers take its permission for travel abroad. As citizens, they do not need to, unless they plan to negotiate, whether for loans or investments. India refused to accept offers of help from the […]
In 2001, as now, internal pressures torpedoed the dialogue process.
“LET us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate,” president John F. Kennedy famously said in his inaugural address in January 1961. In those wise words, Kennedy summed up the essence of the diplomatic process. It is at work today in German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s moves to hold a summit […]
Modi & Kashmir
It is cruel to serve slogans to the people as a substitute for conciliation.
“MANY of us think that it is rather disgraceful and does no credit to India that this matter should have dragged on so long”, India’s deputy prime minister Vallabhbhai Patel told Owen Dixon, the UN mediator on Kashmir, on July 30, 1950. Now nearly 70 years later, the disgrace has increased; the misery of the […]
Politics & lynching
The truth that lies beneath the figures is far more disturbing.
AT long last, Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed, in measured words, his disapproval of lynchings, which have spread since he took office. He never deigned to condemn them or their perpetrators, who are his supporters. Consider, in contrast, Ivanka Trump’s condemnation of “white supremacy, racism and neo-Nazism”, unlike her father, who drew scorn after the […]
The attempt to repeal it poses an existential threat to J&K.
ARTICLE 35-A of India’s constitution says that no law for Jammu & Kashmir, existing or future, shall be void as being violative of the fundamental rights if it touches “permanent residents” or confers on them “special rights” on government jobs, acquisition of immovable property, settlement in the state or rights to scholarship or other forms […]
The 70-page act is essentially a guidebook for the ‘Global Bully’.
IT would be a shame if the international community were to submit to the gross violation of international law that has been systematically committed by the United States, through its Congress, for over two decades. The Countering of America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA), 2017, has aroused widespread resentment because of its broad reach — […]
The court is not a substitute for a democratic political process.
JUDICIAL activism is a virtue only when it is accompanied by restraint. In India, as in the US, the supreme court has been notable not for restraint, but for excess. The US supreme court is in a pitiable state. There was a time when its rulings were regarded as persuasive authorities of high scholarship, for […]
Fallout in Kashmir
The PDP-BJP coalition was always an untenable alliance.
WHEN Mufti Mohammed Sayeed justified the unscrupulous coalition of his Valley-centred PDP with the Jammu-based BJP in 2014, as the meeting of the North Pole and the South Pole, he did not realise that this puerile metaphor would provide the best explanation for its break up. The two poles can never meet. The BJP quit […]