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Regional and Bilateral Issues
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In the normal course, British PM Theresa May’s upcoming visit to India (Nov 6-8) would have been of little more than academic interest. But, these are not normal times for Britain. Its dubious decision to leave the EU has plunged the country into an unprecedented political and economic crisis leaving it floundering for a new role in the world.  
 
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India and Pakistan desperately need to achieve crisis stability where neither side has the advantage of launching a preventive or pre-emptive strike against the other. In order to ensure that mutual deterrence holds, crisis stability is the most essential component. And that cannot be achieved in an environment where political requirements aren’t met and the bilateral dialogue is frozen. 

 
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“We have a wish list that we have put before the government of India,” declared the then Afghan President, Hamid Karzai, on a visit to New Delhi in May 2013. “It is up to the government now to provide us according to their means.” Over the next year, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government decided its means were to be modest.

 

Diwali ushers in seasonal cheer, lit homes and prayers. It also brings fireworks, terrifying animals, birds and humans, besides worsening pollution levels in Delhi and other big cities.

 
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Delhi’s decision, in the aftermath of the Uri attack, to ‘go on the strategic offensive’ against terrorist attacks launched with the support, if not connivance, of the Pakistan government has been noted all over the world.   
 
Sri Lanka and Nepal may have turned their backs on protracted and bloody conflicts but the fault lines that fuelled these wars have not gone away. One key challenge now facing political elites is that of constitutional reform. But long-standing central–peripheral tensions threaten to resurface in constitutional debates and shape contentious politics in both countries.  
 
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Indian experts on Pakistan lament that nothing seem to work against it. India’s size, population, economic might and military superiority in conventional sense and Pakistan’s loss in four wars doesn’t deter, dishearten, discourage or diminish its urge to square up with India and inflict thousand cuts notwithstanding the devastating effect of this mindless pursuit on Pakistan itself.   
 
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Exactly a month ago, Indian special forces crossed the Line of Control (LoC) to prevent imminent infiltration of Pakistan-sponsored terrorists into Indian territory.  
 
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The eighth BRICS Summit on 15-16 October in the Indian coastal city of Goa took place in the backdrop of weakening international energy prices, global economic slowdown and rising tensions on account of terrorist attacks and violent conflicts in different parts of the world.

 
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The track record of mega corruption in sub-contracting, poor implementation and operation plagues nearly all of PRC’s client countries. As delays mount, so will commitment charges on loans and accumulated rate of return. Similarly, political compulsions in accepting high-tariff tolls for every km of new motorways, willingness to substantially raise power, water and telecom tariffs in a historical subsidy regime, land acquisition hurdles, relief and rehabilitation of the displaced, high maintenance costs (owing to less than average material used and terrain), etc., could add manifold to the Chinese debt of a recipient country.

 


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The sixth ministerial conference of Heart of Asia (HoA) - Istanbul Process is all set to begin in Amritsar from today. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani besides representatives from various countries would participate in the conference.
 
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Does Pakistan’s green lighting of the Russian request to use the strategic Gwadar Port for its exports, signal a new alignment in regional power play? Not really, writes Monish Gulati
 
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Fidel Castro was a symbol of revolution and inspiration to most of his followers. His insubordination to US power made him a beacon of resistance in Latin America and elsewhere, and his bushy beard, long Cuban cigar and green fatigues became universal symbols of rebellion, writes Amity Saha for South Asia Monitor.
 
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Since Donald Trump’s shock victory last month, the Democratic Party and its supporters have plunged into a cantankerous inquest. The search for answers has lingered on voters in the “Rust Belt” states of Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin, areas of the country that haemorrhaged manufacturing jobs in recent decades.
 
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US President Barack Obama’s pivot to Asia, such as it was, is an endangered species in the Trump era. Looking back, was it in essence more rhetoric than a policy to be implemented? Leaders of South-east Asia, East Asia and further afield are asking themselves this question.a
 
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I thank Excellency Ghani for accepting my invitation and for gracing this conference. It is also a great privilege for me to welcome all of you in Amritsar, a city blessed with simplicity, beauty and spirituality, and abode to the Golden Temple, the holiest shrines of Sikhs.   
 
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The traditional ties between India and the United Arab Emirates have,  over the decades grown, riding on the strength of trade and investments. The Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will be the chief guest for the 2017 Republic Day
 
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Pathankot in the Punjab, a strategic IAF base, Uri, a sensitive Army post in the Kashmir Valley, both close to the Pakistan border, and now Nagrota, a major base of the Indian Army deep inside the Jammu region close to Jammu city, all were attacked by Islamic terrorist groups which penetrated, the inner-most security cordons.
 
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An aching sense of love, loss and yearning permeate this work of fiction which, however, reads like a personal narrative set in an intensely disruptive period of Indian history, and adds to the genre of partition literature, writes Ni...

 
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This is a path-breaking work on India's foreign policy since Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister in May 2014 and surprised everyone by taking virtual charge of the external affairs portfolio. A man who had been denied visa by some count...

 
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The pattern of Chinese actions on the global stage demonstrates that it lives by the credo of might is right, a potent tool in its armoury for the pursuit of aggressive designs, writes Sudip Talukdar for South Asia Monitor....

 
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The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad and others of their ilk not only destabilise Pakistan and make it one of the world's most dangerous places but also threaten neighbouring Afghanistan and India -- and even far...

 
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