State of SEZs is warning for land acquisition

By Prachi Salve ,

New Delhi: There is strong evidence that past acquisitions of land for development have gone awry. That should serve as a warning, as the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government enters the second year in office and proposes to continue its battle for a new, controversial land acquisition law.

A 2012-13 report of the Comptroller and Audit General of India, the official auditor of the central government, revealed these key findings:

Why PM Modi is wrong in saying that Indians felt ashamed before 2014?

By M Reyaz,,

In 2008 during my final year of BA (Honours), I went to Lahore, Pakistan to participate in an inter-college drama festival. The hospitality of our host at GC University as also general Pakistanis had left us Indians humbled. They went an extra mile in making us feel comfortable. I remember at Anarkali market, how shopkeepers would insist on not taking money once they realized that we are Indians, or generously gave discounts. “Aap Mehman Ho Hamare,” they would often say.

Languages, libraries and legacy of hatred

By Kashif-ul-Huda,,

Last Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi handed a beautiful and thoughtful gift to the President of Mongolia Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj. It was a copy of the earliest illustrated Persian work on the history of Mongol tribes. The book called ‘Jame at-Tawarikh’ (Collection of Histories) was authored by Rashiduddin Fazlullah Hamdani [1247-1318CE], who was the Vazir of Mongol king Mahmud Ghazan Khan [Reign 1295-1304].

Assessing one-year's performance of the Modi Government

(One Year of Modi Government)

By Amit Kapoor,

The Narendra Modi government, which completes a year in office on May 26, had won last year's general elections on the plank of development and its promise to bring in ‘Acche Din’. Here is a performance snapshot of the major initiatives undertaken by the government in various broad areas. These include the economy, foreign engagement, agriculture, infrastructural development, social security schemes, urban development, industrial development, health and environment, education and entrepreneurship and employment.

Safe, Habitable or Smart? India's 100 Smart Cities must be all three

By Sanjiv Kataria,

Each time there is a mention of Smart Cities in India, I get concerned about the safety of women because there is a surfeit of news stemming from the vulnerability of women in our cities. A few incidents that shook India recently, include:

Chinese Puzzles: Qiu Xialong's Inspector Chen and his cases

By Vikas Datta,

"When I am satisfied questions of state security are not involved, then you begin," a secret police operative tells homicide investigator Arkady Renko in Martin Cruz Smith's "Gorky Park", stressing order, not justice - the basic objective of policing not only in authoritarian polities, but frequently in free, democratic societies too. It is especially prevalent in a country where economic liberalisation has led to prosperity, and even affluence, but also crime and corruption as governance remains opaque and autocratic. It is in such a setting that Shanghai's Inspector Chen Cao has to work.


Can women take smart decisions?

By Amit Dasgupta,

If you were asked to respond "Yes/No" to the above question, there is every likelihood that, apart from some good humoured jokes about women and decision making, your response would emphatically be in the affirmative. The uncomfortable fact is that you probably believe that women are incapable of making smart decisions.


Clarity needed on resuming India-Pakistan cricket ties

By Veturi Srivatsa,

There has never been or never will be a right time in the foreseeable future for India and Pakistan to play cricket bilaterally. It has always been a political gambit and it is once again, the cacophonic discussions on television channels notwithstanding.


Why the Communists remain a peripheral force in India

By Amulya Ganguli,

Seven years after the deed was done, the new Communist Party of India-Marxist general secretary, Sitaram Yechury, has confessed that his party made a mistake by withdrawing support from the Manmohan Singh government on the India-US nuclear deal in 2008.

One Year of Modi Sarkar: Hate Speech Galore

By Ram Puniyani,

The coming to power of Narendra Modi in a way gave an open license to all the affiliates of RSS combine to indulge in open hate speech against the religious minorities. The current agenda behind the hate speech is to consolidate the communal polarisation of the society along lines of religion. The well-known case of MIM’s Akarbar-uddudin Owaisis’ hate speech has been despicable and very rightly Akbarudin Owaisi had to be in jail for some time. The case against him should be pursued and the legal course of action must be followed. At the same time, what about the hate speeches indulged in by the likes of Pravin Togadia, Subramaniam Swami, Giriraj Singh, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Sadhvi Prachi, Sakshi Mahraraj, Yogi Adityanth, Sanjay Raut and company?