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The 1991 reforms helped the economy stave off a crisis and then bloom. It is time to outline a credible new reform agenda that will not just bring GDP back to pre-crisis levels, but also ensure growth rates higher than it had when it entered the pandemic. (AFP)

From 1991, the lessons for the India of 2021

By Montek Singh Ahluwalia
UPDATED ON JUN 19, 2021 09:41 PM IST
Thirty years ago, reforms energised the Indian economy and lifted millions out of poverty. As India grapples with a post-pandemic economic crisis, there are lessons on what to reform and how
To watch KK as a ruler was a lesson in not falling for stereotypes. He was the reverse of the stereotypical “big man” image of the flamboyant, firebrand African leader. (Getty Images)
To watch KK as a ruler was a lesson in not falling for stereotypes. He was the reverse of the stereotypical “big man” image of the flamboyant, firebrand African leader. (Getty Images)

Kenneth Kaunda: A Gandhian in Africa

By Shiv Shankar Mukherjee
PUBLISHED ON JUN 19, 2021 08:53 PM IST
To watch KK as a ruler was a lesson in not falling for stereotypes. He was the reverse of the stereotypical “big man” image of the flamboyant, firebrand African leader.
China India national flag cloth fabric waving on the sky with beautiful sun light - Image (Shutterstock)
China India national flag cloth fabric waving on the sky with beautiful sun light - Image (Shutterstock)

The roots of the India-China discord

UPDATED ON JUN 19, 2021 08:33 PM IST
India and China are not friends for four key reasons: They are “deep seated differences over their perceptions of each other”, “their territorial perimeters”, “their strategic partnerships” and, most importantly, “the asymmetry of power”.
The pandemic, predictably, figured in the discussions. G7 countries agreed that something had to be done to help the poorer countries, which weren’t able to procure vaccines. The outcome was a pledge to supply one billion vaccines for poorer countries till the end of 2022, something experts widely described as inadequate. (AP)
The pandemic, predictably, figured in the discussions. G7 countries agreed that something had to be done to help the poorer countries, which weren’t able to procure vaccines. The outcome was a pledge to supply one billion vaccines for poorer countries till the end of 2022, something experts widely described as inadequate. (AP)

G7: A strong message on democratic values

By Mark Tully
UPDATED ON JUN 19, 2021 08:28 PM IST
Could the PM’s public support for the values of democracy mean that he now plans to stop his government from veering further towards limiting the freedom of expression?
Locals lineup their boats at Assi Ghat at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. (HT archive) Exclusive
Locals lineup their boats at Assi Ghat at Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. (HT archive)

Indian cities need river-sensitive master plans

By Rajiv Ranjan Mishra and Victor R Shinde
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 06:29 PM IST
Last week, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) released the draft Master Plan for Delhi (MPD) 2041 for public review. The plan generated a lot of excitement in the media and among the citizens
Assam chief minister Himanta BiswaSarma has emphasised the need to explore areas of cooperation with Bangladesh. (File photo) Exclusive
Assam chief minister Himanta BiswaSarma has emphasised the need to explore areas of cooperation with Bangladesh. (File photo)

Paradiplomacy: The possibilities, and challenges, of Assam-Bangladesh relations

By Subhrangshu Pratim Sarmah
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 06:06 PM IST
Foreign policy is conventionally seem as the exclusive domain of the sovereign State, while paradiplomacy is the common term used when referring to regional or sub-national governments conducting international engagements
Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, US President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, France's President Emmanuel Macron and Britain's Queen Elizabeth attend a drinks reception on the sidelines of the G7 summit, at the Eden Project in Cornwall, Britain, on June 11. (File photo) Exclusive
Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, US President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, France's President Emmanuel Macron and Britain's Queen Elizabeth attend a drinks reception on the sidelines of the G7 summit, at the Eden Project in Cornwall, Britain, on June 11. (File photo)

The G7 deal on minimum corporate tax is flawed

By Ashish Goel and Shilpa Goel
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 05:50 PM IST
According to the US and G7 countries, subjecting companies to a minimum tax rate on a country-by-country basis will end the “race to the bottom” on corporate tax rates, and disincentivise base erosion and profit-shifting (BEPS) practices. But, the proposal is not as straightforward as it seems
Regional cancer centre of Pandit Bhagwat Dayal Sharma PGIMS, at Rohtak, Haryana. (HT archive) Exclusive
Regional cancer centre of Pandit Bhagwat Dayal Sharma PGIMS, at Rohtak, Haryana. (HT archive)

Can India leverage data to conquer cancer?

By Binay Panda
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 05:45 PM IST
Comparing science funding between the US and India is a non-starter. India’s gross expenditure on research and development (R&D) is roughly 1.25 lakh crore or less than $20 billion, and accounts for 0.65% of its GDP
A medical worker inoculates a woman with a dose of the Covaxin vaccine against Covid-19 coronavirus at a vaccination camp held in Amritsar on June 18, 2021. (AFP)
A medical worker inoculates a woman with a dose of the Covaxin vaccine against Covid-19 coronavirus at a vaccination camp held in Amritsar on June 18, 2021. (AFP)

The Taste with Vir Sanghvi: Avoiding the Third Wave

By Vir Sanghvi, Delhi
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 06:16 PM IST
  • In this week's The Taste, "This month’s Covid round-up: protect our doctors, open our parks, wear the masks and decrease the vaccine gap."
US Vice President Kamala Harris an Indian-American, had made a personal pitch speaking of her relatives still in India. This would have been unimaginable a year ago with vice president Mike Pence, or five years ago with even vice president Biden. (File photo) Exclusive
US Vice President Kamala Harris an Indian-American, had made a personal pitch speaking of her relatives still in India. This would have been unimaginable a year ago with vice president Mike Pence, or five years ago with even vice president Biden. (File photo)

When Indian-Americans shape Washington policy and politics

By Yashwant Raj
UPDATED ON JUN 18, 2021 04:28 PM IST
President Joe Biden’s administration has more Indian-Americans in the White House and in Senate-confirmed positions across federal agencies than any administration in the past — 70 appointed or nominated officials, according to Indiaspora, a leading advocacy group for the community
Research shows that indoor air pollution, which is generated from kitchen fumes and household dust, can be two to three times deadlier than outdoor pollution. (Representational Image) Exclusive
Research shows that indoor air pollution, which is generated from kitchen fumes and household dust, can be two to three times deadlier than outdoor pollution. (Representational Image)

Measuring indoor air pollution: Why low-cost technology is critical

By SN Tripathi and Vipul Arora
UPDATED ON JUN 17, 2021 12:16 PM IST
Heavy load of particulate matter pollution (PM) in cities is not good news in the Covid-19 era. Several peer-reviewed scientific studies have established that coronavirus may stay suspended in the atmosphere as PM provides a convenient surface for the pathogen to latch on
Sand mining at the bank of the Yamuna. (Representational image/HT Archive) Exclusive
Sand mining at the bank of the Yamuna. (Representational image/HT Archive)

With rampant and illegal sand mining, the Yamuna can’t be rejuvenated

UPDATED ON JUN 17, 2021 12:17 PM IST
While MPD’s plans are bold, the health of the Yamuna, the second largest tributary of the river Ganga, will not improve unless all states take measures to stop industrial pollution, regulate mechanised sand and gravel mining, and agree to revise the interstate water-sharing agreement in 2024
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. (REUTERS) Exclusive
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. (REUTERS)

UNSG Antonio Guterres is set for a second term. This time, it will be different

By Syed Akbaruddin
UPDATED ON JUN 17, 2021 11:53 AM IST
There is a perception that Guterres’s first term lacked the fizz his election generated in 2016. Perhaps it was on account of the SG being in firefighting mode to keep US financial cuts at bay and ensuring damage limitation
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. (PTI)
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. (PTI)

Rahul Gandhi must choose his political path

UPDATED ON JUN 17, 2021 02:50 PM IST
He can either form his own party, based on his own ideals, and wage a long struggle against the RSS-BJP — or he can engage in the ruthless pursuit of power
Representational image. (PTI) Exclusive
Representational image. (PTI)

Scientifically Speaking | Considering a mix and match approach to Covid vaccines

By Anirban Mahapatra
UPDATED ON JUN 17, 2021 11:44 AM IST
All currently available vaccines for Covid-19, with the exception of the single-dose adenovirus vector vaccine from Johnson & Johnson, were approved clinically with two doses — a prime to build and train the immune response, and a boost to jolt it into producing even more antibodies and immune cells
Representational Image. (Shutterstock)
Representational Image. (Shutterstock)

Crafting an Indian exceptionalism in technology policy

By Vivan Sharan and Aayush Soni
UPDATED ON JUN 16, 2021 07:33 PM IST
The centrepiece of the Indian approach should be to foster a competitive environment that enhances consumers’ rights, rather than rely on regulatory solutions to do the same
Elderly women wearing masks as a precaution against the coronavirus wait to vote for local body elections in Kochi, Kerala, December 10, 2020 (AP)
Elderly women wearing masks as a precaution against the coronavirus wait to vote for local body elections in Kochi, Kerala, December 10, 2020 (AP)

Institutional reform is key to post-Covid-19 national recovery

By Avishkar Singhvi
UPDATED ON JUN 16, 2021 06:04 PM IST
It is the constitutional duty of Parliament to usher in a new era of legal reforms which creates a framework of dealing with pandemics, as well as the root causes of it, rather than leaving the country to rely on antiquated legislation
AI (Artificial Intelligence) concept. (Getty Images/iStockphoto) Exclusive
AI (Artificial Intelligence) concept. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

The promise and perils of Artificial Intelligence partnerships

By Dhruva Jaishankar
UPDATED ON JUN 16, 2021 03:21 PM IST
AI can be a force for good. It has emerged as one technology of particular importance because of its role as an accelerator, its versatility, and its wide applicability. But challenges include standards-setting, supply chain resilience, talent retention, and data policy
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (ANI) Exclusive
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. (ANI)

Why the second wave may not hurt Narendra Modi politically

UPDATED ON JUN 16, 2021 03:07 PM IST
Significant sections of voters do not see the removal of Modi or the defeat of Hindutva to “save the Republic” as the primary political fault line in the country
While the issue has been resolved for last year’s batch, the same problems are now being faced by children who are currently in Class 10 or 12. Board exams for Class 12 students affect their college admissions, and so related decisions probably need greater debate. However, the decision regarding the fate of children who are in Class 10 today can be taken relatively quickly. (HTPhoto)
While the issue has been resolved for last year’s batch, the same problems are now being faced by children who are currently in Class 10 or 12. Board exams for Class 12 students affect their college admissions, and so related decisions probably need greater debate. However, the decision regarding the fate of children who are in Class 10 today can be taken relatively quickly. (HTPhoto)

A plea from Class 10 students: Decide on our fate now

By Nayantara Deva
UPDATED ON JUN 15, 2021 06:30 PM IST
The pandemic has been a difficult time for all of us, and on behalf of all my batchmates, I do hope that the government will decide quickly on these issues, so that we are spared a year of uncertainty and board exam-related anxiety, and can focus on learning in a more predictable and reassuring manner.
Representational image. (Getty Images/iStockphoto) Exclusive
Representational image. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

For those with dementia, Covid’s impact has been brutal

UPDATED ON JUN 15, 2021 04:00 PM IST
India has 5.3 million dementia patients. According to the Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Society of India (ARDSI), the number will grow to 7.6 million by 2030
Representational image. Exclusive
Representational image.

For the corporate world, the hybrid approach to work poses challenges

By Raghu Raman
UPDATED ON JUN 15, 2021 03:37 PM IST
In addition to customer behaviour, economic upheavals and extreme uncertainty, the new mode of hybrid working has changed the environment completely
Representational image. (AP) Exclusive
Representational image. (AP)

On climate, our hubris is the problem

By Arunabha Ghosh
UPDATED ON JUN 14, 2021 03:37 PM IST
Unless we move beyond techno-centrism, discuss a fair development deal, and change lifestyles, summits won’t yield outcomes
Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Reuters) Exclusive
Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Reuters)

As Netanyahu loses power, what does it mean for India?

By P R Kumaraswamy
UPDATED ON JUN 14, 2021 05:17 PM IST
Some of the key shifts in India’s position vis-à-vis Israel happened during the Bibi-Modi tenure — India’s abstentions in the Unesco vote on Jerusalem and the UNHRC votes on the Gaza wars of 2014 and 2021
Representational image. (Bloomberg) Exclusive
Representational image. (Bloomberg)

In a pandemic, the idea of a university

By Siddharth Mallavarapu
UPDATED ON JUN 14, 2021 03:25 PM IST
While applied knowledge has a particular status, what we must not forget is the significance of basic research investments
The Constitution is the product of much deliberation. Sardar Patel formulated two articles — 311 and 314 — affecting the services. Both protected officials from arbitrary punishment by their political bosses, displaying the trust and respect he had for civil servants and their opinions (HTPHOTO)
The Constitution is the product of much deliberation. Sardar Patel formulated two articles — 311 and 314 — affecting the services. Both protected officials from arbitrary punishment by their political bosses, displaying the trust and respect he had for civil servants and their opinions (HTPHOTO)

The architecture of India’s governance

PUBLISHED ON JUN 13, 2021 07:54 PM IST
Form, trust, mutual respect constitute the bedrock of the politician-civil servant relationship. Sardar Patel understood it
It was Xi who wanted to project China as a superpower-in-the-making by moving away from Deng Xiaoping’s “hide-and-bide” strategy of keeping a low international profile. This meant China reacting strongly against perceived violations of its core interests, resulting in a dip in ties with many countries, some of which wanted to keep China in good humour. And now it seems that while Xi’s diplomats have delivered, Chinese diplomacy has suffered seriously. (REUTERS)
It was Xi who wanted to project China as a superpower-in-the-making by moving away from Deng Xiaoping’s “hide-and-bide” strategy of keeping a low international profile. This meant China reacting strongly against perceived violations of its core interests, resulting in a dip in ties with many countries, some of which wanted to keep China in good humour. And now it seems that while Xi’s diplomats have delivered, Chinese diplomacy has suffered seriously. (REUTERS)

Is China backtracking on its wolf warrior diplomatic style?

By Harsh V Pant
UPDATED ON JUN 13, 2021 07:50 PM IST
The wolf warrior diplomatic style was perhaps suited more to the age of Donald Trump, but now that the Joe Biden administration has lowered the rhetoric on “America First”, the challenge for China is even more acute. China’s new-gen diplomats have been asked to defend the indefensible in recent years, from Beijing’s atrocities on minorities and its hyper-militaristic foreign policy to the opacity and mishandling of Covid-19.
From 1990 till the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, India had pulled 300 million people out of economic distress. The pandemic has ruined the good work of the last three decades (Praveen Kumar/HT)
From 1990 till the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, India had pulled 300 million people out of economic distress. The pandemic has ruined the good work of the last three decades (Praveen Kumar/HT)

The pandemic must lead to a reset of capitalism

By Shashi Shekhar
UPDATED ON JUN 13, 2021 07:46 PM IST
World War I paved the way for the departure of monarchies. World War II sparked the Cold War of communism versus capitalism. The fall of the Berlin Wall in the late 1980s paved the way for the collapse of the communist system. Is the coronavirus pandemic laying the groundwork to change the current face of capitalism?
Curzon recognised that India’s security depends upon its ability to exercise influence over a geopolitical space beyond its own shores. He also recognised that India’s main landward attention must be directed to its frontiers. And he understood that building influence in neighbouring spaces required India to offer an attractive commercial and strategic alternative to the charms of its rivals (Getty Images)
Curzon recognised that India’s security depends upon its ability to exercise influence over a geopolitical space beyond its own shores. He also recognised that India’s main landward attention must be directed to its frontiers. And he understood that building influence in neighbouring spaces required India to offer an attractive commercial and strategic alternative to the charms of its rivals (Getty Images)

The Curzonian imprint on Indian foreign policy

By A Wess Mitchell
PUBLISHED ON JUN 12, 2021 07:22 PM IST
Lord Curzon’s conceptualisation of India’s neighbourhood and emphasis on frontiers and integration is still relevant and can serve as a template for both India and India-US partnership
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