COVER STORY

10-09-2021

Throwback to Taliban era (September 10, 2021)

Briefing

U.S. policy & Afghanistan

Afghanistan’s chequered history

K.P. Fabian Cover Story
What has happened in Afghanistan can be traced to the United States’ ‘muscular’ foreign policy after the Cold War and the floundering global war on terrorism.
COVER STORY

Afghanistan’s neighbours react cautiously to Taliban takeover

John Cherian Cover Story
India stands out in the region as Afghanistan’s only neighbour to steadfastly refuse to do business with the Taliban, the new rulers in Kabul.
Cover Story: Afghanistan

Taliban takeover pushes Afghanistan into chaos

John Cherian Cover Story
The Taliban seizes power swiftly as the United States pulls out its troops after 20 years of misadventure, plunging Afghanistan into an atmosphere of fear and uncertainty.
COVER STORY

Afghanistan’s long struggle with reforms and conservativism

Vijay Prashad Cover Story
For a hundred years, the Afghan people have struggled between two visions of their society—one that saw the need to reform society through women’s emancipation and the advancement of ethnic minorities, and the other that saw the future in the past and insisted on the most conservative views being dominant in social life. The Taliban is the apotheosis of the second path.
Short story in Translation

‘Savara’ by Chaudhury Hemakanta Misra: Odia short story in translation

Literature
A powerful portrayal of travelling entertainers in small-town Odisha.
Personality

Agnes Smedley: ‘Daughter of Earth’

Novelist, feminist and world revolutionary Agnes Smedley rejected “ordained social hierarchy” to follow her radical path to self-discovery. She considered the earth “shared common treasury” and helped create “new forms of interiority and sociability”, marking new “utopian geographies”1.
France & Israel

Israel: France’s foster child

Susan Ram World Affairs
France has been a key contributor to Project Israel and its lethal, life-destroying remit.
HISTORY

New light on Tipu Sultan

Nidhin G. Olikara The Nation
A Persian manuscript in the British Library in London and other documents help correct an error in Tipu Sultan’s birthdate. The ensuing research also offers a fresh insight into the mind of the Mysore ruler.
Finance

RBI proposal to loosen lending norms for private players a catastrophe in the making

Rana Mitra The Nation
The RBI’s proposal to loosen regulations for private lenders in the microfinance space will have disastrous consequences for the poor, especially women in rural areas.
Environment

Protests in Gujarat against corporate projects that threaten people’s livelihoods and damage the environment

Lyla Bavadam Environment
Gujarat’s poor track record in environmental governance has pushed people to the wall, and they are now making their voices heard and using legal means to assert their rights.
Hate sloganeering

Hate speech at Jantar Mantar rally latest attempt by Hindutva forces to stoke communal passions

Divya Trivedi Communalism
The hate speech at Jantar Mantar in Delhi is the latest in a string of attempts by right-wing organisations to stoke communal passions ahead of the Uttar Pradesh elections. And Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s silence is deafening.
Muslim victims of false terrorism charges

New book sheds light on struggle of Muslim victims of false terror after acquittal

Ziya Us Salam The Nation
Several Muslims framed under bogus terrorism charges struggle to lead a normal life after their acquittal and release. A new book in Hindi, a product of painstaking research, chronicles their trials and tribulations.
COVID-19

The trajectory of scientific progress in the time of pandemic

Sandipan Baksi Covid-19
The scale and spread of the pandemic have imposed unprecedented demands on modern science. But science being bound by the complex nature of reality and its own method, humanity has no choice but to wait for the scientific method to provide the answers it so desperately seeks.
JAMMU & KASHMIR

Congress changing tack in Kashmir?

Anando Bhakto Politics
The Congress under Rahul Gandhi seems to be focussed on countering the BJP in Jammu with a soft Hindutva line, sidestepping in the process crucial issues such as secularism and Article 370.
COVID-19

No data, little relief: Panel report exposes government inadequacies

A parliamentary panel report exposes the government’s cluelessness on the extent of job losses caused by the pandemic and its inability to provide adequate welfare measures to the worst affected.
Politics

Mamata Banerjee’s Project Tripura

The Trinamool Congress makes forays into Tripura to form key alliances as part of its plans to overthrow the BJP government and establish its base in that State.
COVID-19

Will India be able to avert a third wave of the coronavirus pandemic?

The downward trajectory of the second wave has slowed down to imperceptible levels, a worrying trend in a context where the numbers are rising again around the world.
Climate Change

IPCC calls for immediate action rather than rhetorical references to a “climate crisis”

The IPCC report is an important wake-up call to the world to not get taken in by the claim that net-zero declarations of developed countries represent “ambition” in climate action. The real question for countries is how much they plan to emit cumulatively from now until they reach net-zero and whether this is in keeping with their fair share of the carbon budget.
IPCC report on climate change

IPCC issues dire warning on global warming

R. Ramachandran Environment
The IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report comes as an ominous reminder of how global warming will impact the world in the coming years and stresses the urgent need to cut emissions, while offering tremendous insights into how human activity has influenced climate change in recent decades.
Climate Change

The takeaway messages in the IPCC’s AR6: What does it mean for India?

S. Abhilash Environment
From the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report, it is clear that the outlook is grim for India on the climate change front. It can expect to experience erratic monsoons, severe cyclonic storms in the pre- and post-monsoon seasons, heatwaves, and flash flood and drought events.
Interview: William Dalrymple

William Dalrymple: ‘Prestige of America heavily dented’

Ziya Us Salam Cover Story
Interview with William Dalrymple, writer and historian.
COVID-19

The trajectory of scientific progress in the time of pandemic

Sandipan Baksi Covid-19
The scale and spread of the pandemic have imposed unprecedented demands on modern science. But science being bound by the complex nature of reality and its own method, humanity has no choice but to wait for the scientific method to provide the answers it so desperately seeks.
Personality

Agnes Smedley: ‘Daughter of Earth’

Novelist, feminist and world revolutionary Agnes Smedley rejected “ordained social hierarchy” to follow her radical path to self-discovery. She considered the earth “shared common treasury” and helped create “new forms of interiority and sociability”, marking new “utopian geographies”1.
France & Israel

Israel: France’s foster child

Susan Ram World Affairs
France has been a key contributor to Project Israel and its lethal, life-destroying remit.
HISTORY

New light on Tipu Sultan

Nidhin G. Olikara The Nation
A Persian manuscript in the British Library in London and other documents help correct an error in Tipu Sultan’s birthdate. The ensuing research also offers a fresh insight into the mind of the Mysore ruler.
Finance

RBI proposal to loosen lending norms for private players a catastrophe in the making

Rana Mitra The Nation
The RBI’s proposal to loosen regulations for private lenders in the microfinance space will have disastrous consequences for the poor, especially women in rural areas.
Environment

Protests in Gujarat against corporate projects that threaten people’s livelihoods and damage the environment

Lyla Bavadam Environment
Gujarat’s poor track record in environmental governance has pushed people to the wall, and they are now making their voices heard and using legal means to assert their rights.
Hate sloganeering

Hate speech at Jantar Mantar rally latest attempt by Hindutva forces to stoke communal passions

Divya Trivedi Communalism
The hate speech at Jantar Mantar in Delhi is the latest in a string of attempts by right-wing organisations to stoke communal passions ahead of the Uttar Pradesh elections. And Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s silence is deafening.
Muslim victims of false terrorism charges

New book sheds light on struggle of Muslim victims of false terror after acquittal

Ziya Us Salam The Nation
Several Muslims framed under bogus terrorism charges struggle to lead a normal life after their acquittal and release. A new book in Hindi, a product of painstaking research, chronicles their trials and tribulations.
COVID-19

The trajectory of scientific progress in the time of pandemic

Sandipan Baksi Covid-19
The scale and spread of the pandemic have imposed unprecedented demands on modern science. But science being bound by the complex nature of reality and its own method, humanity has no choice but to wait for the scientific method to provide the answers it so desperately seeks.
JAMMU & KASHMIR

Congress changing tack in Kashmir?

Anando Bhakto Politics
The Congress under Rahul Gandhi seems to be focussed on countering the BJP in Jammu with a soft Hindutva line, sidestepping in the process crucial issues such as secularism and Article 370.
COVID-19

No data, little relief: Panel report exposes government inadequacies

A parliamentary panel report exposes the government’s cluelessness on the extent of job losses caused by the pandemic and its inability to provide adequate welfare measures to the worst affected.
Politics

Mamata Banerjee’s Project Tripura

The Trinamool Congress makes forays into Tripura to form key alliances as part of its plans to overthrow the BJP government and establish its base in that State.
COVID-19

Will India be able to avert a third wave of the coronavirus pandemic?

The downward trajectory of the second wave has slowed down to imperceptible levels, a worrying trend in a context where the numbers are rising again around the world.
Climate Change

IPCC calls for immediate action rather than rhetorical references to a “climate crisis”

The IPCC report is an important wake-up call to the world to not get taken in by the claim that net-zero declarations of developed countries represent “ambition” in climate action. The real question for countries is how much they plan to emit cumulatively from now until they reach net-zero and whether this is in keeping with their fair share of the carbon budget.
IPCC report on climate change

IPCC issues dire warning on global warming

R. Ramachandran Environment
The IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report comes as an ominous reminder of how global warming will impact the world in the coming years and stresses the urgent need to cut emissions, while offering tremendous insights into how human activity has influenced climate change in recent decades.
Climate Change

The takeaway messages in the IPCC’s AR6: What does it mean for India?

S. Abhilash Environment
From the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report, it is clear that the outlook is grim for India on the climate change front. It can expect to experience erratic monsoons, severe cyclonic storms in the pre- and post-monsoon seasons, heatwaves, and flash flood and drought events.

Book Review: M. Mukundan's "Delhi: A Soliloquy" is an elegy for innocence

A nonchalant depiction of the personal tragedies of people as they unfold in Delhi during the war years in the 1960s and 1970s, the Emergency and the anti-Sikh riots.
IPCC report on climate change

IPCC issues dire warning on global warming

R. Ramachandran Environment
The IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report comes as an ominous reminder of how global warming will impact the world in the coming years and stresses the urgent need to cut emissions, while offering tremendous insights into how human activity has influenced climate change in recent decades.
Climate Change

The takeaway messages in the IPCC’s AR6: What does it mean for India?

S. Abhilash Environment
From the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report, it is clear that the outlook is grim for India on the climate change front. It can expect to experience erratic monsoons, severe cyclonic storms in the pre- and post-monsoon seasons, heatwaves, and flash flood and drought events.