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

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Lines on the Map

It is tempting to think that a surgical strike was the only option left to tackle an intractable country. The sense of foreboding can only deepen with the directionless approach of the Indian government in resolving the Kashmir dispute and the terror question. India’s decision to inflict such an action against Pakistan indicates that the spirit of SAARC to work out things in a mutually agreeable manner had already taken a backseat.

Reliance Jio: Predatory Pricing or Predatory Behaviour?

Reliance Jio is disrupting the working of India’s telecommunications industry by taking on incumbents like Bharti Airtel, Idea Cellular and Vodafone which together control almost three-fourths of the market for mobile voice and data services. Although some of its services are “free,” RJio's pricing may not be considered predatory even if its behaviour certainly is.

RBI Pays a Stiff Price: Hot Money Worth $34 Billion Will Be Flowing Out of India

A huge amount of dollars will be flowing out of the country in the coming weeks as non-resident Indians redeem the deposits they made three years ago under an ill-conceived special scheme to shore up the external value of the rupee. The new governor of the Reserve Bank of India should resist pressures to devalue the Indian currency.

Three Generations of Kashmir’s Azaadi: A Short History of Discontent

When did the question of Kashmir’s right to self-determination get euphemised into Kashmiris’ “grievances” against the Indian state, centred merely on ending human rights violations and better economic support? When did the people of Kashmir, who have been mobilising themselves long before India or Pakistan were created, get scripted as economically deprived, ignorant, alienated and unable to make rational decisions about their future? The article charts the politics of plebiscite by the Indian state, National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party alike, and shows how political solution has been obfuscated.

The Process of Undermining Pakistan's Military Hegemony May Have Begun

There is a political transition taking place in Pakistan. Although the dominance of the army has not diminished, in the last two decades there has been a noticeable deepening of democratisation processes. The writer argues that in the future, if there is another attempt to impose military rule, there could be greater opposition and processes to undermine the military’s hegemony are already evident.

The Missing Periyar and the Curious Tamil Nationalism of Kabali

Rajinikanth’s Kabali was expected to be a pro-Dalit movie, but the universalist focus on Tamil unity makes it a product of alternate Tamil nationalism instead. Kabali’s radicalism could have been strengthened by the inclusion of Periyar.

How Zakir Naik Appropriated Liberalism’s Flaws—and Won

If Islamic televangelist Zakir Naik is symptomatic of religious fundamentalism, we have to pin which part of his rhetoric accounts for it, and how is it different from other secular affirmations of truths. Any attempt to rerun the old narrative of the irrationality of religion, and of Naik’s supporters being blinded by unexamined religious passion, falls flat on its face. Naik’s religion in fact, is an embarrassingly evolved version of how a rational religion was conceived post-Enlightenment, and his justification of punishment and justice in Islam strikingly mimics the operation of the modern secular world. This is also how he has been able to gain legitimacy amidst an audience that sees itself as modern.

Kashmir: When Ignorance Begets Tragedy and Farce

When the Government of India has neither the intent nor the political will to offer greater autonomy, and Kashmiris refuse to settle for anything less than azaadi , armed confrontation is only to be expected.

Debate or Debasement? A Rejoinder to Vamsee Juluri

Vamsee Juluri’s response to my article contains the puerile argument that the debate on the history curriculum in American schools can somehow preclude discussions on Indian history.

California Textbooks Issue: A Response

The recent piece "What is at Stake in Rewriting California Textbooks" (EPW, 16 July) ignores several facts to sustain a baseless attack on Scholars for People, writes Vamsee Juluri.

GST and the States: Sharing Tax Administration

The proposed Goods and Services Tax Bill will mean that states like Tamil Nadu, which have manufacturing industries, will lose out on own tax revenue collections. Instead of focussing only on indirect taxation reform, the centre must also consider sharing direct tax administration with states, which has been the practice in other federal arrangements internationally.

Burhan Wani and Beyond: India’s Denial, Kashmir’s Defiance

The anger of people in Kashmir and their political aspirations are legitimate rights. Since 2008, attempts by civilians to organise themselves peacefully against their oppression or even for their day-to-day needs including water, electricity and jobs have been met with brute force, even murders. Post 2010, Kashmir has moved in circles from periods of unrest - to calm - and then back to unrest. Burhan Wani’s death was just a small spark that was needed to break the pretence of normalcy thrust on its people. The government should realise that the stone pelters on the streets are neither Pakistani nor paid agents. Kashmir, today, needs a political intervention that is unconditional.

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