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

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Sabarimala Protest

The dynamics of the Sabarimala issue and its politics are analysed by trying to disassemble three intertwined features of the issue, namely the deep-rooted masculine performance in the Sabarimala pilgrimage, evolution of temple politics and the process of constituting the temple as a standard site of worship for the “Hindus,” and caste dynamics and Hindutva’s political desire.

From Agenda of Alliance to Agenda of Split

The upping of the anti-militancy operations following the break-up of the Peoples Democratic Party–Bharatiya Janata Party alliance in Jammu and Kashmir is seen as being carried out with a view to win the general elections at the cost of Kashmiri lives and bodies scarred with pellets. Mudasir Amin...

Tamil Nadu’s Summer of Discontent

Not a day passes in Tamil Nadu without a protest by common people. In fact, some protests have been going on for months. Why is Tamil Nadu in ferment? Why are more and more people hitting the streets in anger? It is all because of a general distrust of the central government and the popular media. The people’s agitations crossed a certain line in the case of the demand to stop the Indian Premier League matches being played in Chennai, thus creating a divide in Tamil Nadu.

Last Lap of the Karnataka Elections

Congress Chief Minister Siddaramaiah faces no severe criticism for his tenure, but there are constituents of Karnataka that are unhappy with the incumbent government. Sections of the Lingayats firmly back the Bharatiya Janata Party in parts of central and northern Karnataka, which challenges the Congress’s prospects of a second term. The Janata Dal (Secular) is also a force to reckon with in south Karnataka. However, overall, the contest will probably be a close one, primarily between the Congress and the BJP.

Party with a Difference?

From adopting winnability as the core principle of nominating candidates to removing political appointees of the previous government, and in dealing with governments of opposition parties, the behaviour of the Bharatiya Janata Party has been so much like the Congress that the latter would rejoice in the assurance that there is no mukti from its ways and manners. The crucial difference between the BJP and other parties is that it is able to instil a sense of destiny not just among its rank and file but also the general public and convince it that the party is doing desh seva while others have been doing only politics.

Evaluation of SAD–BJP Government (2007–17)

Regarding the performance of the Shiromani Akali Dal–Bharatiya Janata Party alliance government since February 2007, available trends suggest that there exists a gap between the claims made by the government and the actual work done. The perceptions of the people, based on empirical evidence and ground-level reality, suggest tough times ahead for the ruling alliance.

Facts and Fiction about How Muslims Vote in India

There is a widely held belief that Muslims in India vote en bloc and strategically to defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party. This misconception has given rise to several wild theories about how Muslims participate in electoral arena—that they vote in large numbers, their decision of whom to vote for is influenced by clerics, they are more concerned about religious issues while voting, and are less supportive of India’s political institutions. This article presents a body of evidence using public opinion and election returns data from Uttar Pradesh to show that the political and electoral behaviour of Muslims is no different from that of any other major community in the state.

Third Democratic Upsurge in Uttar Pradesh

The upcoming assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh point to an electoral battle between the incumbent Samajwadi Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party, which swept the state in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. With a decline of identity politics in the state, the major political parties are trying to outdo each other in engineering alliances, reaching out to hitherto neglected, marginalised groups, under the garb of inclusive politics. Sensing an opportunity, these backward groups are turning away from their identity-based political anchors and being drawn towards parties that promise political and economic empowerment, signalling the beginning of the “third democratic upsurge” in UP.

Voices of Dissent

Words Matter: Writings against Silence edited and introduced by K Satchidanandan, Gurgaon: Penguin Books India, 2016; pp 260, ₹399.

Modi, Mukesh and a Moment in Time

It is unclear if Reliance will cripple Airtel, Idea and Vodafone by its audacious moves.

Credibility and Portability?

Examining the Centralised Online Real-time Electronic Public Distribution System reforms introduced by the Government of Chhattisgarh to understand the processes and conditions under which such reforms strengthen accountability and affect the delivery of public services, it is found that while earlier reforms have been successful, the contribution of CORE PDS has been useful but limited. A significant finding was that technological fixes for social protection programmes are only feasible insofar as they work within the political logic of the context in question. CORE PDS reforms could not address the issues of power imbalances between shop owners and cardholders which continue to shape interactions between them. Introducing transparency, accountability and quasi-market reforms in this context offered limited possibilities in what they could achieve.

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