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Ultimately, Mr. Hadi’s government collapsed through a series of grievous omissions: inaction in the face of powerful militias, unwillingness to impose law and security all over the country, and a failure to improve the lives of ordinary Yemenis. Mr. Hadi and the United Nations were not able to create the change that Yemenis took to the streets for in 2011. The Yemen model has been replaced by the Houthi model, with its simple adage: Violence pays…..


The Retrial of Godse: Assassin’s Political Audience

The anniversary of the murder of Mahatma Gandhi has a different flavour this year. Of late, the man who killed him, Nathuram Godse, has been glorified publicly, and not only by BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj, who hailed him as a “patriot”. (Maharaj has since apologised for this.) But also by Hindu Mahasabha general secretary Acharya Madan, who argued on TV that while Gandhi was responsible for the death of 10 Lakh Hindus — the victims of Partition, a catastrophe he attributed to the Mahatma — Godse had killed “for a cause”….

The Retrial of Godse: Forgetting the Facts

I imagine you believe that he was for the most part adored; in fact he was hated and he is still hated today. Hatred is still alive in India and he died of it… But the simple fact that he lived according to his own law — which was ascetic and demanding of himself was something people could not tolerate.” French writer Hélène Cixous turns to Gandhi to compare his life with the ways of writing that “may hurt, may dissatisfy and give the feeling that something is taken away.”….

The Bengaluru police, who arrested Mehdi Masroor Biswas for tweeting extensively on behalf of the dreaded militant group, Islamic State (IS), claimed that they have sufficient evidence to file a charge-sheet against him in the next 30 days.....

Bengaluru Police Bust Group Supplying Terrorists with Mobile SIM Cards

Police Say They Have Enough Evidence to Charge Mehdi Masroor Over IS Tweets   

Police Hunt for Satellite Phone Users in Karnataka

Police Identify Shops Selling Explosives


Erdoğan’s Attack on Civil Society
Mustafa Akyol

The problem is that Erdoğan now sees the Gülen movement, which once was his best ally, as his worst enemy, and he tries to undermine it by all means necessary. That includes even attacking the very Gülen-inspired schools that Erdoğan himself used to praise only a few years ago. The sad thing for Turkey is that these Gülen-led schools - which number almost 1,000 in some 130 countries, ranging from Mongolia to South Africa - amount to the most notable Turkish civil society project ever. They are also a great part of Turkey's “soft power” in the world, raising generations that receive a good, modern education, speak English well, but also receive a taste of Turkish-Muslim culture…..


“Instead of confronting with them and raising hue and cry about the intentions of Christian missionaries we decided to raise the quality of our education. If we cannot provide the quality education to our people we cannot stop them to go somewhere else. And that is no a justice. We have to equip our people with all the modern requirements along with Islamic education then only we can save our people getting trapped,” says Sayed, adding that the people running Madrasas across India will have to understand that the generations “we are producing from our institutions should not face the job problem. For this, we have to equip them with scientific and technical education as well”…..


Feroz Shah Kotla, on the other hand, is a huge, spacious and fascinating fortress built by Emperor Feroz Shah Tughlaq. The sandstone Ashoka Pillar there dates back to the 3rd century BC. It is one of the pillars which Emperor Ashoka had left after his reign in the 3rd century BC. Tughlaq transported the pillar from its original location at Ambala. Another pillar is at the ridge in the Delhi University’s north campus. That one was brought from Meerut. Today, this fortress is seldom visited by anyone. Worse, the stillness and absence of human interest have created an eerie aura. For the lack of a better word, it’s scary to be alone on the premises for even a few minutes. Ancient architecture in Delhi is a crucial link to the past, and merits an honest appraisal of whether or not these historical ruins need to be conserved. The strains of living a modern, progressive life have annihilated all reflections of history. It is high time both the Government and public conscience woke to the hapless shrieks of Indian history....


Wake Up to Reality: ISIS Volunteers in India Cross a Thousand
Madhav Nalapat

After months of soft-pedalling, intelligence agencies have finally accepted that ISIS is spreading across most of India, especially in Uttar Pradesh, Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Seemandhra, Telangana and Maharashtra. In such a delay between fact and acceptance, they are following the same trajectory as their counterparts in the US, UK and France, who till late last year refused to take seriously reports that several hundred of their citizens were battling on behalf of the group in Iraq and Syria.....


India’s Friends Israel and U.S. Differ Sharply on Arab World
Saeed Naqvi

The death of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia will push the rapidly changing West Asian landscape onto the middle of the agenda President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will discuss on Sunday. Terrorism was already a theme, but now cause and effect of that rampaging evil may also get an airing, something neither Riyadh nor Jerusalem quite likes…..


Of Abject Mis-Governance: Pakistan’s Problem is…Pakistan
Mehr Tarar

And it goes on and on. It was one thing if Pakistan did not have the capacity to generate the required electricity or its gas resources — albeit limited in the long run — were inadequate to provide domestic and industrial fuel, or its rivers and canals had all dried up! Pakistan’s problem is…Pakistan…..


On Religious Conversion, a Question
Khaled Ahmed

Why convert now? I can understand Pakistan doing it because the state is in crisis and, by some estimates, is falling apart and can’t prevent this criminal activity. But India is already populated by a great mass of Hindus; why should it add more, when it knows that the new Hindus will not be genuinely absorbed?  By the middle of this century, India is supposed to become an economic giant, second only to China. The BJP government is led by a man who can achieve this milestone through his economic policies. The world will convert to India because of the big market it is going to become. Isn’t it enough that at least three nation-states of South Asia boast national anthems based on the poems of the greatest Hindu genius, Rabindranath Tagore?....


Take Aim, Fire at Will: Australian Hypocrisy on a High Pedestal
Pierre Marthinus

All lives matter greatly, not just Australian ones. Any debate that does not start from these fundamental premises of equality of human life and dignity is not worth visiting and is a waste of the Indonesian public’s valuable attention and time…..


Saudi Arabia King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Dies, New Ruler Is Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
Late Saudi King Abdullah

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah died early on Friday and his brother Salman became king, the royal court in the world's top oil exporter and birthplace of Islam said in a statement carried by state television. King Salman has named his half-brother Muqrin as his crown prince and heir. "His Highness Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and all members of the family and the nation mourn the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who passed away at exactly 1am this morning," said the statement……

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Pakistan’s Paradigm Shift: Too Good To Be True?
Dr Mohammad Taqi

Pakistan’s national security paradigm has changed, or so they say. Perhaps my Afghan readers, who would be the major beneficiaries of such a tectonic shift, may be able to appreciate the above quoted Persian verse, in which the classic poet Anvari says: “O my Lord, am I seeing this all while I am awake or is it a dream? Such bounties for this poor soul after such prolonged misery!” After the decades of the death and destruction it unleashed, the Jalaluddin Haqqani terrorist network, run currently by his son Sirajuddin Haqqani, has reportedly been banned by Pakistan. Additionally, Hafiz Muhammad Saeed’s Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), which effectively is the political front for the proscribed terrorist group Lashkar-e-Tayyeba (LeT), has ostensibly been banned too. Amen to that!....


One may well question the wisdom of retaining the CII on the statute books at all, that too with a parliament bound by the constitutional stipulation that no law will be passed contrary to the Quran and Sunnah……


Motivated by ‘religious zeal and fervour’, they had turned up to get training for jihad. Naeem ur Rehman, an IT expert, explained this as ‘academic’ training through lectures and sermons, and not military instruction. The gathering of people with similar thinking in hundreds of thousands at one place also infused a new spirit of determination among the activists, he added…..

A Mind of Winter
Rahul Pandita

A Mind of Winter
Rahul Pandita

Twenty-five years is a long time. For a refugee, it indicates a sense of permanent exile. In exile, most of us are doing well for ourselves. But beneath our tiepins, our PowerPoint presentations, our single malts, our Harvard ‘five-foot shelf’ classics, we suffer from an acute sense of homelessness. In exile, our achievements are like pieces of meat over that man’s dead body. In exile, we are like Orwell’s Unhappy Bella, waiting for unknown fishermen to sing the sad song of our betrayal...


Indians Must Become a ‘People of the Book’
A Surya Prakash

Strange as it may seem, we will have to work overtime to disprove Ambedkar if we are to save the Constitution of India that was drafted under his leadership. This can happen only when religion dissolves into a great crucible called the Constitution of India. We may not go so far as the French in permitting people to castigate or laugh at the religious beliefs of others but let there be no doubt that our Constitution and democratic way of life can survive only if we ensure that religion yields to the Constitution and not the other way round....


What a Movie, Cabbie, Saint, Viral Post Tells About Faith in India
Samar Halarnkar

I say eventually because there was considerable alarm when the film came to public notice. It was first called Basavanna, the name of a 12th century south-Indian Hindu reformer. But his followers, Shiva-worshippers called Veershaivas, protested, so the name changed to Brahmin. But then Brahmins protested, so it ended up as Shivam. All this jitteriness quickly faded when the rushes revealed that far from taunting Hinduism, Shivam celebrates its new, militant avatar......


US President Lyndon Johnson set up an 11-member national advisory commission on civil disorders to “explain the riots”. The report’s conclusion was scathing: “Our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white — separate and unequal.” This isn’t just a US problem. From Ferguson to Forbesganj in Bihar (where a policeman repeatedly stomped on the corpse of a Muslim man), police and minorities have shared a rather problematic relationship. In India, the relationship between Muslims, the country’s largest minority, and the police represents a structural parallel of the African-American community’s distrust of the police....


As that sturdy bellwether of the conventional wisdom, Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, wrote in 2005, India, once ‘known as a country of snake charmers, poor  people, and Mother Teresa’, was being ‘recalibrated’ as ‘a country of brainy people and computer wizards’.  This ‘recalibration’ was eagerly lapped up by the Indian press, with mass-circulation magazines running cover stories entitled ‘Global Champs’ and ‘On the Way to Number One’.  It was argued that while Chinese growth depended on sweated labour, the Indian miracle was driven by knowledge and hence of greater worth — as well as more sustainable in the long run....


Our Common Religion: Jews, Muslims, Parsis, Christians Have Thrived In India Because Of A Liberal Hinduism
Pavan K Varma

The majority in the Muslim community is statistically at the bottom of society across a wide range of verifiable social and economic indices. In such circumstances, it cannot but be good policy to provide a backward minority, along with other deprived categories, special incentives and safeguards under the law to participate on equal terms in mainstream opportunities of the country. The truth is that Hindus are not, and have never been, insecure about their religion....


No Exit From Pakistan
Raza Rumi

Only a democratic, plural Pakistan can be a peaceful polity and a responsible regional nuclear power. This is a lesson that the US must not forget; and more importantly Pakistan’s civilians must not overlook. Despite the odds they will have to reset many policy buttons even if it takes long.


Sharif Cannot Afford To Ignore the Military and Imran
Mehr F. Husain

With the war raging on civilians, the Government is more than aware of the fact that turning against the military will mean losing public support which could possibly translate into national anti-Government sentiment.  So if the military is successful in physically cleaning out North Waziristan, then Pakistan might as well let justice take its course too, so that the anti-war lobby and human rights activists are also satisfied…..

When in Rome …
Nadeem F. Paracha

When in Rome …
Nadeem F. Paracha

Whenever I travel now, I look forward to meeting people who are not always judging me through religious and ideological biases or figuring out where I stand politically. That, however, can be a problem if you are a Pakistani, because then most non-Pakistanis seem to just want to talk to you about your faith as a Muslim….

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