The Survey of India issued a new political map (eighth edition) on November 2, 2019, to reflect the change in the status of Jammu and Kashmir as two Union Territories. Nepal registered a protest though the map in no way had changed the boundary between India and Nepal. However, on November 8, the ninth edition was issued. The delineation remained identical but the name Kali river had been deleted. Predictably, this led to stronger protests, with Nepal invoking Foreign Secretary-level talks to resolve issues. With the Indian Ambassador Manjeev Puri in Kathmandu retiring in end-December and Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale retiring a month later, the matter remained pending despite reminders from Kathmandu. … [Read more...] about For a reset in India-Nepal relations
Plane lands on hudson river
Pappan Singh, who has helped rewrite the migrant narrative of tragedy and helplessness, said he called his workers every step of the way, from after they entered Delhi airport to when they stepped into the plane -- asking if all was okay, if they had taken their boarding passes, checked in their bags and safely made their way to the gate. … [Read more...] about Migrants reach home after ‘ride’ of a lifetime
By Bipul Chatterjee and Kishan S Rana Connectivity enables trade. While this is an ancient story, we sometimes tend to forget this simple logic. Our penchant for looking at the whole tree, as against the eye of a parrot, tends to push us towards debating trade issues in technical and esoteric language, at times far removed from ground realties. We have to first grasp the basics of trade and also keep in mind that talking about trade possibilities is rather different from making trade possible. The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on cross-border trade between India and Bangladesh has, once again, underlined this simple fact. For a large number of basic necessities, including commodities such as onions or salt, Bangladesh is dependent on India. Nothing wrong with that as nobody can or should produce everything. However, due to legitimate health-related concerns, during this global pandemic, land borders, through which bulk of Indo-Bangla cross-border trade takes place, are firmly … [Read more...] about View: Fostering Indo-Bangla trade relations, connectivity is the ‘mantra’
By Nirmal Jain Have you seen the glee in the eyes of politicians when they announce loan waiver schemes for farmers? No prizes for guessing whether their eyes are filled with mercy for farmers or avarice for votes. A few weeks ago, the chairperson of the largest state-owned bank sensibly voiced her concern that the loan waiver could upset credit discipline. Some of the legislators had the audacity to demand her apology for this. For them, we are reminded of Jesus’ last words 'Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing'. But there are many people in the government and bureaucracy who know what they are doing. The smaller issue is that they are making bad banks, worse. The larger issue is if the Indian farmer is destined to live in destitution and die in debt? Let us take the smaller issue first. In theory, the burden of loan waiver is borne by the state governments. Its immediate impact may be a slight fall in NPAs but it does spoil credit culture and makes … [Read more...] about View: Is Indian farmer destined to live in destitution and die in debt?
(Interrupts) In the jungles of India there are at least 8,000 Maoists. And they write in pamphlets that ATS (the anti-terror squad), RAW (the Research and Analysis Wing, India's external intelligence agency) and CBI (the Central Bureau of Investigation) are their enemies. … [Read more...] about The man who got the activists arrested