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        Society for Policy Studies


Afghanistan remained a key diplomatic challenge for Pakistan in 2017, with various strategic, security, economic and internal political implications. The US pressed Pakistan hard for the desired level of cooperation but China not only eased this pressure, it also helped Islamabad reduce the trust deficit with Afghanistan.


Step by faltering step, Pakistan is moving away from what it was meant to be. This is despite varying, and even contradictory, interpretations of what is branded as the Quaid’s vision. And this is an opportune moment to determine the direction of change that is taking place in this country.


Foreign policy is an aspect of national policy. If national governance is dysfunctional foreign policy cannot deliver. This is because no coherent political framework for a successful foreign policy will be available. This is the norm in Pakistan.


The taxation system in the country is extremely unfair, biased, extortionist, inefficient and corrupt. Those who are in the tax net are fleeced while many who should be in the net are not there (bias and unfairness).


It seems as if in 2017, there was never a day when the Supreme Court (SC) was not in the news, and this month, the Court is busier and more active than ever.


As the year comes to a close and the new year is about to dawn live nations both at the personal and national level retrospect for what they have achieved and what they lost during the year. More importantly, they resolve to work for a better if not a glorious future. And wiser leaders like the present Chinese leadership take a longer perspective stretching over decades.


"Where were you when Benazir was killed?" is one of the best ways to start a conversation in Pakistan. Most remember the moment when news of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's death spread and parts of the country fell into turmoil.


Together with the plethora of problems that need fixing in Pakistan, the one that ought to be on top of the list for the current government, and indeed for the one that will take charge in 2018, is tax reform.


It seems to have become a national sport to blame judges for all that goes wrong in Pakistan. From prosecutorial misconduct, negligent inquiries by investigating agencies and loopholes in the law itself, to executive collusion, Pakistani judges are, unfortunately, held responsible for anything and everything that is found to be wrong with the system.


Historically, Fata has always been at the periphery of empires. Even when it was considered a kingmaker, it preferred getting booty in return. The area was referred to as Yaghistan (no-man’s land). The British gave it some semblance of government but their efforts were half-hearted.


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spotlight image Sergio Arispe Barrientos, Ambassador of  Bolivia to India is, at 37, the youngest head of mission in New Delhi. Only the second envoy from his country to India, Barrientos, who presented his credentials to the Indian President last month, feels he has arrived at a propitious time, when India’s focus is on so
India is the world's biggest importer of weapons, accounting for 12 percent of global purchases during the past five years because it is not able to produce enough arms to meet its requirements, according to the authoritative Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, writes Arul Louis  
While most Indians were observing recent domestic political developments; with surprise defeats for the ruling BJP in its pocket boroughs and a likelihood of the opposition uniting against the Party for the 2019 national elections, writes Tridivesh Singh Maini
Before the independence of Mauritius from Britain in 1968, the Chagos archipelago was separated as part of the “British Indian Ocean Territory” in 1965, and retained by the UK, writes Priya Pillai
Famous for its pursuit of Gross National Happiness, Bhutan has a new cause for joy: In recognition of its Gross National Income (GNI) growth and social development, the kingdom is poised to graduate from the UN category of the world's poorest known as the Least Developed Countries (LDC), writes Arul Louis
Prem Sharma sells gutka (a combination of betel nuts, tobacco and mouth freshener) and cigarettes near the Vijay Nagar square in Indore, the commercial capital of the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. However, the most visible part of his tiny business is the dustbin that he does not dare to lose. The case is similar with pretty

While India has regained its position as the world’s fastest growing large economy – with the uptick in GDP expansion at 6.7% in Q3 of 2017-18 – sustaining it critically depend...


What is history? How does a land become a homeland? How are cultural identities formed? The Making of Early Kashmir explores these questions in relation to the birth of Kashmir and the discursive and material practices that shaped it up to the ...


A group of teenagers in a Karachi high school puts on a production of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible— and one goes missing. The incident sets off ripples through their already fraught education in lust and witches, and over the years ...


Title: Do We Not Bleed?: Reflections of a 21-st Century Pakistani; Author: Mehr Tarar; Publisher: Aleph Book Company; Pages: 240; Price: Rs 599


From antiquity, the Muslim faith has been plagued by the portrayal of Muslim men regularly misusing this perceived “right” to divorce their wives instantly by simply uttering “talaq” thrice.


'Another South Asia!' edited by Dev Nath Pathak makes a critical engagement with the questions about South Asia: What is South Asia? How can one pin down the idea of regionalism in South Asia wherein inter-state relations are often char...