ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Chechnya : Ground Realities After 9/11

It is incredible that Chechnya with an insignificant population has been waging a protracted battle for independence against a one time superpower without visible or legitimate outside support. What is the nature of support for the Chechens especially after 9/11? What is the nature of this war? Given its regional and Islamic ramifications, the Chechen case fits well into the global war scenario against terror headed by the US and supported by Russia. The issues and problems of Chechnya, therefore, ought to be addressed largely in a global context and not from a narrow regional perspective of the Caucasus or Russia.

Central Asian Republics

The post-Soviet era has seen the five central Asian republics incessantly squabbling over the waters of the two important rivers that flow through their region. With geography and population distribution being major issues in the dispute over access, and no accord on river system management in place, this mutual hostility has considerable destructive potential unless the countries come together to sort out their differences.

Indo-Russian Relations

The second visit of the Russian president to India saw an attempt to further improve bilateral ties, including trade, and agreement among the two nations on several potentially destabilising issues.

Tribute to a Russian Trader: Afanasy Nikitin

More than half a millennia after the celebrated Russian, Nikitin travelled across regions of the Deccan and western India, a joint Russo-Indian initiative erected a monument in his honour - a symbol that today serves as an apt reminder of the enduring continuity of ties between the two countries.

Russia : The Demographic Labyrinth

With a declining birth rate and an imbalanced sex-ratio, Russia is on the edge of a demographic crisis. What is required is a prioritisation of the government's population policy - focusing equally on evils like alcoholism and drug abuse as well as encouraging a immigration policy that would offer incentives and welcome living conditions to the migrants.

Perils of Putin's Russia

Russian president Vladimir Putin faces the mind-boggling imperative of having to integrate Russia's economy with that of the world economy. At the same time, it involves a shedding of old mindsets and long-held notions of the Soviet economy. Russia now has to work towards a three-pronged approach - ensure its territorial integrity; create favourable conditions for economic recovery and growth and yet preserve the civil society and the rights and freedoms that all Russians have come to enjoy.

Pipeline Politics

Ongoing pipeline politics in the Caspean and central Asian region has been surcharged with fears of continuing hostility along all routes. Ethnic animosity, political instability and persisting apprehensions about the volatility of the region are practical obstacles to the development of the oil economy of the area.

Chechnya: War Has No End

What genuine popular desire for autonomy there was in Chechnya, by now it has been displaced by plain simple criminality: drug and sex trafficking, arms-running, extortion and abductions for ransom.

Rise and Fall of Yevgeny Primakov

With Primakov out and Stepashin in, Russia's economic woes are unlikely to be over soon. Primakov attacked many of Russia's problems with some measure of success and thus became popular among the people. He also refused to bow to western pressures. This is why he was dismissed.

Wage Arrears in Russia The Problem Has No End

Has No End P L Dash THE Russian independent TV channel runs a satirical weekly puppet show programme. In this programme called 'Kukol,' it figures prominent Russian politicians and shows how they resolve the burning issues of the day. In one such programmes late January this year, the programme director chose four top politicians such as president Boris Yeltsin, former premier Victor Chernomyrdin, former close aides of Yeltsin on finance, tax and wage, Anatoly Chubais and Boris Nemtsev. Moscow's popular mayor Yuri Luzhkov was chosen as a side hero in the 10-minute programme, apparently to show that he was capable while others were incapable in resolving the wage arrears issue.

Education in Post-Soviet Russia-No More an Obligation of the State

they couId contribute to economic efficiency and that what mattered for the Bank was not 'governance' in any comprehensive sense, but only 'state-versus-market' issues in the realm of economic administration. He found that the Bank's policy advice in this context was not only much too general to be of use in formulating viable operational plans for reforms, but in any case the empirical evidence on the efficacy of the advice was not conclusive. Guhan argued that in the ultimate analysis, for its advice to be accepted by its client governments, the Bank had to rely far more on its leverage as a provider of funds than on its propaganda about or the inherent persuasiveness of the virtues of its advice. However, such aid- related conditionalitics were most often ineffective. Also the Bank did not seem to realise the contradiction involved in its advising the state to retreat in favour of the marker, while recognising that only a strong state could resist the vested interests having a stake in the status quo: such a strong state might be less willing to retreat. In Cuban's view, the Bank had been asking the less developed countries to adjust to adverse changes in their external environment while ignoring that some of these changes had in fact been the results of actions of the developed countries themselves or international institutions in which they were extremely powerful Alter discussing the philosophical underpinnings of a theory of state, Guhan identified six desiderata for the state from the perspective of good governance. These described a state that (a) enabled the full and free development of its citizens; (b) sought to promote cohesion amidst political and social pluralities: (c) exercised effective authority which is subject to responsibility; (d) maintained due separation and balance within the triad of basic institutions: the legislative, executive and judiciary; (e) governed an economy that was pluralistic, technically efficient, socially just and morally acceptable in terms of its relations with the market and in its handling of corruption and of interest and demand groups; and (ft sought to promote these various objectives in practical action through tan optimal contribution of the reform of institutional structures and the promotion of values and virtues required to sustain them.

Ruble Reform Will It Salvage Russia

P L Dash The non-functioning of Russian industry and malfunctioning of its economy are not likely to be salvaged by Yeltsin's decision to devalue the ruble.

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