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        Society for Policy Studies


When religion is supreme, justice can go wrong. Because a religious state doesn’t accept the divorce between what is public and what is private, it ends up confusing ethics with piety.


Monday was just another day for Prakash Kumar, 35, a mobile cell vendor in Hub town in Balochistan, when he uploaded pictures of the festival at Hinglaj Mata, in his home district of Lasbela, he had attended and posted it to his acquaintances on WhatsApp.


The rift was unnecessary, making sensibly handled closure all the more welcome. Eleven days after DG ISPR Maj-Gen Asif Ghafoor tweeted a rejection of a prime ministerial directive — a move that even at the time appeared hasty and ill-thought-out — the civil and military leadership have choreographed the end of a wrenching saga that at the very outset, some seven months ago, seemed vastly overblown.


So now we have it. The gloves are back on. The cat is once more in the bag. Having been duly plucked from amongst the pigeons. The latter after all, are not known for tweeting in Pakistan — even if they thought they saw a pussycat.


A week after the interview of former TTP spokesperson Ehsanullah Ehsan on GEO was banned by the electronic media regulator, another private television channel aired the interview of Noreen Leghari, a young woman radicalised by the Islamic State extremist group. Let us examine the issues that this raises.


It is not clear whether it was the resulting uproar, the government’s earnestness to not fracture the progress made in civil-military ties or something else that prompted the Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) to “withdraw” its tweet about rejecting the government’s notification following the Dawn leaks report.


“You can’t clap with one hand,” one of the rapists in the notorious Delhi gang rape case had famously said after being convicted of rape and murder.


In two separate statements yesterday, officials from Pakistan’s neighbouring states respectively called out Islamabad’s ‘lies’ over cross-border death toll, and threatened to strike inside the territory to take out jihadists’ safe havens. Neither of these statements came from India.


It was said in a matter-of-fact way and caused few ripples. Indeed, both the speaker and the audience seem to have accepted it as an inalterable reality of the state here.


All is well in the circles of power – or at least it will be. A meeting between the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Qamar Javed Bajwa on Friday night has been described as “fruitful” by a military spokesperson.


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spotlight image India’s Vice President Mohammed Hamid Ansari visited Armenia recently to celebrate 25 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
The US has slammed Pakistan for failing to crackdown on terror groups operating from "safe havens" inside its territory, and said the Nawaz Sharif government did not take any action against the LeT and JeM, which continue to operate openly.
In dispatching its  PLA (Peoples Liberation Army)  marines to Djibuti in the Horn of Africa on Wednesday (July 12 ) by amphibious ships, from the southern port of Zhanjiang, China has taken a significant step in enhancing its  trans-border military footprint.
It is becoming increasingly obvious that China is experiencing a sort of superiority obsession, imagining it can dominate and conquer the world. Several Chinese acts in the recent past indicate such an attitude. Asian nations, which are now apprehensive about China’s aggressive postures, are unclear how matters will shape up.
It is appalling to see how the struggle for self-determination in Kashmir has been reduced to bitter recriminations between Pakistan and India.
As Aadhaar becomes the norm in India, and gets skewered for the involuntary nature of its imposition, our northern neighbours, as is their wont, want to do a number that will make this appear benign.
South Asia is situated in a strategically important location and has always been bone of a contention for control by major powers.
It was just at the end of spring that the unquiet American President was talking big about being the man who can seal the deal on Israeli-Palestinian peace.
S.T. Lee Distinguished Lecture of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, Singapore on "India, ASEAN and Changing Geopolitics”

Interview with Hudson Institute’s Aparna Pande, whose book From Chanakya to Modi: Evolution of India’s Foreign Policy, was released on June 17.


This is the continuing amazing spiritual journey of a Muslim man from Kerala who plunged into Vedic religion after a chance encounter with a Hindu mystic under a jackfruit tree in the backyard of his house when he was just nine. It is a story w...


History is told by the victors but in our modern age, even contemporary events get - or are given - a slant, where some contributors soon get eclipsed from the narrative or their images tarnished.


Humans have long had a fear of malignant supernatural beings but there may be times when even the latter cannot compare with the sheer evil and destructiveness mortals may be capable of. But then seeking to enable the end of the world due to it...


Title: Reporting Pakistan; Author: Meena Menon; Publisher: Viking/Penguin Random House; Pages: 340; Price: Rs 599

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