Reforms back in India's oil economy amid crash in crude prices

By Biswajit Choudhury,

Complete decontrol of diesel marketing, new pricing formula for domestic gas after five years and a plunge in global crude prices flagged a new beginning for India's oil economy in 2014 but there was little news on stake sale in state-run oil firms and fresh auctions for hydrocarbon assets.

India can still salvage the series Down Under

By Veturi Srivatsa,

Can India regroup and make a series of it against Australia after their so-close-yet-so-far performance in the Adelaide Test? The answer is yes and no.

Yes, if they can take the positives from the first Test and add certain plus points. India will be bolstered by the return of their captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Australia’s loss of Michael Clarke. The batting was not all that fallible in both the innings, barring their losing the plot, post-dismissal of opener Murali Vijay.


Topsy-turvy year for cricket in India

By Sayan Mukherjee,

Indian cricket went through another tumultuous year on and off the field with a controversy that shook the very foundation of the game's governing body in the country - the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) - that refused to die down and spilled over to the New Year after raising several tough questions for its beleaguered president, N. Srinivasan.


The Siege and a Twitter account: Questions Begin

By Amit Dasgupta,

The Sydney café siege is over. While no tears will be shed over the gunman, two families have lost their loved ones. Christmas will not be the same. The incident has left fun-loving Sydney shaken and will trigger introspection and investigation. In a separate incident, techie Mehdi Masroor Biswas was arrested with the assistance of MI6 and the Bengaluru police have started retracing his digital footprint to identify his proximity with the IS network. Are there parallels between the two incidents?

Strategic and economic consequences of cheap oil

By Amit Kapoor,

Crude oil prices have plummeted globally. The present levels have consequences for both oil exporting countries like Russia, Nigeria, Mexico and Venezuela and those in the Middle East, as well as developing economies like China and India that depend on imports for meeting the demands of their fast prospering populations. In the past, the high price ensured that the oil exporting countries had enough inflows in the form of payments by developing and developed economies that have had a shortage of crude oil pre-July. However the economy is just one of the consequences of cheap oil. The other effects of equal, if not more importance include geopolitics and strategic alignment.


India's 'no' to emission cap deadline is unfortunate

By Ramesh Singh,

Reports from the UN climate meet in Lima say India has refused to accept a time limit for capping greenhouse gas emissions. This is really unfortunate.

Environmental Minister Prakash Javadekar was right in saying that carbon dioxide (CO2) has helped to improve grain yields in most of South Asia. At the same time, Javadekar must know that greenhouse gas emissions in the long term enhance the surface temperature. And when surface temperature increases, we need more ground water to irrigate our agricultural farms to achieve high yield.

To Fight Another Day: PoWs and their ingenious escapes

By Vikas Datta,

War or military fiction has been an integral part of literature across cultures - be the epics of Homer or Virgil, or closer to home, the great fratricidal war in the Mahabharata, or earlier, the tantalising reference to the Battle of the Ten Kings in the Rig Veda.

Ensure ‘SabKa Saath – Sabka Vikas’ for Muslims too!!

By Syed Zahid Ahmad,

In an environment where we face threats (from terrorist organizations) to divide India in the name of religion, and some political parties are trying to polarize votes on the basis of religious communities, will it suffice saying: “If anyone thinks Indian Muslims will dance to their tune, they are delusional. Indian Muslims will live for India. They will die for India?”

Hindutva upsurge will tar Modi's image

By Amulya Ganguli,

The first phase of the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) politics was marked by the targeting of mosques and churches. After the advent of Narendra Modi, the scene has become quieter. In fact, the Ram temple issue has been put on hold and even the fulminations against "love jihad", the supposedly sinister plan of Muslim youths to marry Hindu girls, have faded away, at least for the time being.

Herbal Park, a metaphor for today’s India

By Jaspal Singh,

During a recent journey down the Shivaliks along the Jamuna river, we soon crossed the ranges to be in the plains, on the main highway that connects Delhi to Badrinath. Sugarcane fields and newly-sown wheat dotted both sides of the road.

We decided to make a stop at a park called ‘Herbal Park’. As the name suggests, it is a park with different medicinal and other herbs. Created by the Haryana government, it was well laid out, studded with beautiful log cabin cottages.