• Explore
  • Understand
  • Illumine

Embed: 30-03-15 -- Tridivesh / Sumanth C. Raman / Policy Report No.7

Hyderabad Mayor T. Krishna Reddy and the Mayor of Suwon City, Korea, Kim Yong Seo, exchange documents after signing International Sister City Relationship agreement in Hyderabad in March 2005 - Photo: Mohammed Yousuf

States and Foreign Policy

Infusing a New Dynamic to Sister Cities

Tridivesh Singh Maini

The Narendra Modi-led government in India has taken a rather unconventional approach to diplomacy evincing interest in granting a more meaningful role to provinces and cities in building ties with the outside world, says Tridivesh Singh Maini. Such bonds, which have paved the way for sister provinces and sister cities, have the potential to promote India's 'soft power' to the world by looking beyond mere economics and ensuring greater people-to-people exchanges.

Barring a few cosmetic measures the Union Budget 2015-16 has done little to change the perception that the Indian state is withdrawing itself from the vital role of providing quality healthcare to all through increased public investments. PHOTO: AP

Union Budget 2015-16

Placing Wealth over Health

Sumanth C. Raman

The Union Budget 2015-16 continues to place healthcare at the periphery of the state's activities. Sumanth C. Raman calls for greater public allocation to healthcare by the central government and makes the case for improving quality in government hospitals. The creation of a new tier of healthcare providers, one rung below the doctors, he says, is possibly the best step that can be taken to solve India’s healthcare crisis.

H.E. Chinese Ambassador to India Le Yucheng Photo: The Hindu

from The Hindu

‘Building ties for the 21st century’

Srinivasan Ramani

Interview with Le Yucheng, Chinese Ambassador to India, who emphasises a new type of relationship with New Delhi that is based on win-win cooperation

On the eve of the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and India on April 1, 1950, the Chinese Ambassador to India, Le Yucheng, in written answers provided to a set of questions posed by Srinivasan Ramani, emphasised the need for a renewal of China-India ties in tune with the realities of the 21st century.

Ruchika Singh_Policy Report No.7

Policy Report No. 7

Intra-party Democracy and Indian Political Parties

Ruchika Singh

This report examines the status of intra-party democracy in the two major political parties of India — the Indian National Congress (INC) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). It focuses on understanding the inclusiveness and decentralisation in two main aspects of intra-party democracy: the candidate nomination process and the selection of leaders and office bearers. Analyses presented in this report are based on an extensive literature survey, data analysis and interviews conducted with party officials, former Election Commissioners and representatives of civil society organisations.

The Arena

Cattle protection laws that selectively criminalise the possession and consumption of one among the several key products derived from cattle as reason for the slaughter ban is based on a flawed policy heavily influenced by human identity politics. PHOTO: Yamini Narayanan

Law and Animal Rights

Criminalising Beef, Not Dairy

Yamini Narayanan

Is the beef ban really about protecting animals? By challenging conventional notions of animal welfare that are deeply couched in a lop-sided religious understanding, Yamini Narayanan holds the dairy industry more culpable for cruelty to cattle than the beef industry. To be effective and meaningful, animal protection laws, she says, should make a departure from an anthropocentric framework.


Full Text: Supreme Court judgment on Section 66A of Information Technology Act, 2000

On March 24, 2015, the Supreme Court of India struck down Section 66A of the Information Technology Act, 2000, describing it as unconstitutional.

from Group Publications

It happens only in India


Forty years after returning as a Peace Corps volunteer to a village in Tamil Nadu, the writer finds religions in harmony, borrowing customs and cultural norms from one another


Rajya Sabha MP Jairam Ramesh adressing the public lecture on Climate Change and India's Energy Policy in Bengaluru on Monday. Photos: The Hindu : Sampath Kumar G P

Individuals can reduce India’s carbon footprint: Jairam Ramesh

In a public lecture on climate change, Jairam Ramesh explores the various energy alternatives that the country has in reducing its carbon footprint and says that India has a pivotal role in global climate change negotiations. The lecture was organised by The Hindu Centre and the National Institute for Advanced Studies on November 10, 2014, in Bengaluru.

Constructing Heritage : Lecture by Romila Thapar

The Second Rukmini Devi Memorial Lecture delivered by Romila Thapar, Emeritus Professor in Ancient History, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, on Dec. 20, 2014, at Kalakshetra Foundation, Chennai.

It is indeed an honour for me to have been invited to give this lecture, and I greatly appreciate it. Kalakshetra has been something of a legend from the time it was founded by Rukmini Devi and subsequently for the work that it sustains. The respect for the institution grows both for the attention it gives to what we regard as our heritage and for helping in the construction of an on-going heritage. Since both history and heritage conduct a dialogue between the past and the present, we have much to talk about.

‘Heritage’ means that which is inherited. It is used for many things – from genes to geometrical patterns, from property to culture. It was once assumed that heritage is what has been handed down to us by our ancestors, neatly packaged, which we pass on to our descendants, as is implicit in the term, parampara. We sometimes call it tradition. This is what goes into the making of our cultures and our civilization. Heritage is thought of as static whereas tradition is said to mould our way of life. We prefer to think that these have been passed down from generation to generation, relatively untouched. But the more we seek to understand them, the more we realize that each generation changes the contents, sometimes marginally and sometimes substantially.

    Ban hits wild cats too
    Neha Thirani Bagri and Nida Najar

    As the beef traders’ strike continues, lions, tigers and other carnivores in Mumbai zoos now get chicken as their primary feed. Keepers worry about the animals losing strength


    Dynasty in democracy

    In democracies governed by a dynasty, the leader is the prime fundraiser with control over the party machine and sees to it that the leading members remain divided. South Asia presents a vivid example of the baleful consequences of dynastic rule.

    India’s been at the receiving end of many MNCs. Is that why the government’s doing a rethink on arbitration abroad?

    Finance Minister Arun Jaitley presented the Union Budget 2015-16 at the Lok Sabha on February 28, 2015. The Key features of the Budget [274 KB], Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's budget speech [124 KB], Budget at a glance [613 KB], Finance Bill 2015 [364 KB] and the Macro-economic Framework Satement [245 KB] can be accessed here as PDF documents.