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

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Indian Jails: Turned Upside Down

The practice of discriminatory treatment of political prisoners, which was instituted during the colonial period, continues in independent India. The prison as an institution has become a site of contention between the privileged and the deprived.

Indian Jails: Turned Upside Down

The practice of discriminatory treatment of political prisoners, which was instituted during the colonial period, continues in independent India. The prison as an institution has become a site of contention between the privileged and the deprived.

Minority of One

Minority of One In Freedom

Obituary of an Indian `Body Bag`

The story of Hatim Kathiria, the young Indian who enlisted in the US army only to be killed in Iraq, is the story of the US need for "outside labour" in its army, of twisted notions of jehadi and of middle-class India's obsession with the US.

Pitfalls of Neo-Nationalism

The prime minister's speech in Oxford that appeared almost a nostalgic tribute to India's erstwhile colonial rulers was greeted with opprobrium across the political spectrum. But the reactions need to be examined in the context of the current global politics and economy. They form part of the continuing debate on how the past is reconstructed in Indian history writing.

Civilising the BJP

The BJP may appear confused in its present moment of crisis but it can little disassociate itself from the Hindutva movement that was responsible for its attaining national prominence in the early 1990s. Those hoping for the BJP reinventing itself as a new right-of-centre party may well be disappointed, for it is the BJP that needs the RSS organisational structure and the committed cadres of the Sangh parivar more, especially during election time.

Beyond Bihar

In the absence of an active body of conscientious public opinion, the coming elections in Bihar will see the same tired march of voters to the polling booths that characterises elections all over India ? some coerced by the local political mafia dons, some allured by false promises offered by the candidates. How long can this sad march continue? Where and when will it end ?

Hobson's Choice for Indian Communists

India's leading communist parties, in recent times, have found themselves confronted with a difficult dilemma: to balance their opposition to some of the centre's economic policies with an equal and sometimes greater concern to preserve the UPA government in the interests of secularism. However, as seen in their respective party congresses, both Left parties are not above issuing renewed threats for a ?Third Front? to keep the government on its guard.

Heroines from a Lost Homeland

Narratives of the 1947 Partition and its outcome are bound to be multiangular. There is the dual angle of the two opposing states of India and Pakistan, each constructing its respective, mutually hostile, official version. There is again another dual angle within Pakistan from which the Sindhis, and the Urdu-speaking mohajirs may look at the aftermath, out of their mutually exclusive viewpoints. Within India again, we discover separate angles born of different experiences. The stories told by the Hindus and Sikhs who fled their homeland in west Punjab (when it was becoming a part of Pakistan) during the Partition, and became refugees in Delhi and other parts of east Punjab (which became a part of the Indian Union), are different from those of the Bengali Hindu families.1 They had to leave East Bengal on the eve of the Partition (before it turned into a constituent of Pakistan), driven out by the violent religious persecution in 1946, which reached its nadir in the Noakhali killings.

All Quiet on the Maoist Front?

The unrest in rural Andhra Pradesh will continue unless both sides - the state and Naxalite groups - withdraw from their respective maximalist positions. The battle, currently on, is being waged on issues that rightly should have been solved years ago; yet land reforms and social justice continue to elude the rural poor.

Reflections on the Tsunami

Humanitarian concerns figure little in the disaster management policies of the government; nor do they guide the functioning of various agencies expected to provide relief. The absence of coordinated strategies to provide aid to the affected renders futile any debate on the ability of science and religion to predict disasters or protect potential victims.

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