This category contains 20 posts

The Iranian Key – Part 1: The Road from Chabahar

On September 30th, Afghanistan and the U.S. finally signed a much-delayed bilateral security agreement, more than a year after it was originally meant to be signed by the erstwhile President Hamid Karzai. Karzai and the U.S. had suffered a breakdown of trust between them, with increasingly tense & even hostile relations, with the former accusing … Continue reading

Chess Pieces Moving

There is something in the history of India-Pakistan relations that you can almost predict when the latter’s relations with India are going to be on an upswing and also when relations are heading in a downward spiral into an abyss. In previous pieces, I have already written as such about the way Pakistan undulates between … Continue reading

Gathering Storm

There are times in South Asia’s history when unfolding events seem to precipitate a change in the prevailing status-quo. For the past decade or so, a halting but strengthening peace process between the two principal antagonists – India & Pakistan – has kept the lid on simmering forces on the boil. From time to time, … Continue reading

Deciphering Indian Thoughts On Sea Power

You could be forgiven for being confused about recent developments involving the Indian Navy. On December 3rd, the Indian Navy Chief D.K. Joshi made an assertion that the Navy was prepared to deploy to the South China Sea to protect it’s oil interests. The assertion was widely reported in the Indian and international media. It … Continue reading

India’s Lankan Problem – Part 3: Intervention & It’s Aftermath

Continuing from Part 2 of this series, we have reached that point in recent history when Rajiv Gandhi took over as Prime Minister of India. At this point, India was reeling from an unrelenting insurgency in Punjab supported by Pakistan. India’s foreign relations with the United States and most of the western world were defined … Continue reading

India’s Lankan Problem – Part 2: The Lion & The Tiger

The origins of the ethnic conflict between the Sinhalese & the Tamils in Sri Lanka lies in the opposing nationalism of both sides. The Sinhalese, as was presented in the Part 1 of this series, had an ingrained sense of being the inheritors of the distinct Sinhalese/Buddhist identity that had been their legacy from the … Continue reading

India’s Lankan Problem – Part 1: Ancient & Medieval Origins

When you look at geological depictions of how, over millions of years, the Indian subcontinental plate drifted northwards towards Asia, see if you missed seeing a familiar island at the foot of the Indian plate separated by a sliver of ocean. This island is none other than present day Sri Lanka. Indeed, the island of … Continue reading

India’s Glaring Ministerial Deficit

It is a day after the two successive power grid collapses in India that left nearly 700 million Indians, or round about a tenth of humanity, without power for hours at end. It is perhaps futile to try and fathom the kind of hardships suffered by people across 20 states in the daily lives without … Continue reading

Jinnah’s Revenge

Imagine you have been transported back in time. The date is October 31st, 1984. The news of Indira Gandhi’s assassination at the hands of her Sikh bodyguards is spreading like wildfire. There are news reports of Congress party leaders leading mobs through Delhi exhorting them to kill as many Sikhs as they can. Sections of … Continue reading

Pakistan’s Trump Card

Unless you’re living on another planet, you would have read about Pakistan President Zardari’s much publicized ‘personal’ visit to India to visit the shrine of the twelfth-century Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti in the city of Ajmer. The visit comes after several rounds of confidence building measures slowly taking place since the Indian Government started … Continue reading


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