February 28, 2014Jayalalithaa keeping her alliance options open?
Inscrutable have been the ways of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa. She is a political strategist and tactician rolled into one that her unpredictable ways have won the day for her - mostly, says N Sathiya Moorthy
February 26, 2014Is India-Sri Lanka fishing row nearing an end?
Sri Lanka's signals -- that it is ready for 'joint fishing' initiatives -- and Tamil Nadu fishermen's sticking to commitments have paved the way for a negotiated settlement on a long festering issue, says N Sathiya Moorthy
This small Balochi group led by a 72-year-old broke Mahatma's record
Protesting against enforced disappearances in Balochistan, Abdul Qadeer Baloch, 72, has led a small group that has covered more than 2,000 kilometres on foot, breaking the 84-year-old record set by Mahatma Gandhi during his Dandi march. Hamid Mir
reports from Islamabad.
February 19, 2014Bilawal Bhutto: Pakistan's Twitter warrior
Bilawal Bhutto's political inheritance is his biggest asset as well as the biggest liability as he tries to make his mark in Pakistan politics. Challenging the Taliban militants is part of that strategy, though it matches with his political ideology. Shahzad Raza
profiles the son of Benazir Bhutto and Asif Ali Zardari.
February 18, 2014Telangana: Costly victory for Congress, BJP stumpedSheela Bhatt
lists ten quick takeaways from the passage of the Telangana bill in the Lok Sabha.
February 14, 2014Jan Lokpal to be Kejriwal's Lok Sabha campaign agenda
The Delhi assembly witnessed unprecedented noise and cacophony on Friday as Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal made a fervent attempt to table the Jan Lokpal Bill.
Explained: The Congress and BJP double-speak over Telangana
On the basis of many conversations with stakeholders on the Telangana issue, Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt
presents an FAQ to help understand the politics of posturing and realpolitik on the ground to win seats. The questions are many and the answers are not straight
'We will protest against anything we find offensive'
Freedom of speech does not mean you can write or say anything and everything. You cannot hurt the sentiments of the people on the pretext of freedom of speech, says Dinanath Batra
, one of the main petitioners against Wendy Doniger's book, The Hindus: An Alternative History.
February 13, 2014'Chaos in Lok Sabha over T-Bill shows it's time for PM to go'
It is time to pack up, sir! Please resign and save some honour of the Lok Sabha, an anguished Sheela Bhatt
reports from the Lok Sabha press gallery after watching the shameful goings on over the tabling of the Telangana Bill.
Arundhati Roy to Penguin India: 'You owe us writers an explanation'
'The elections are still a few months away. The fascists are, thus far, only campaigning. Yes, it's looking bad, but they are not in power. Not yet. And you've already succumbed?'
Tamil Nadu: Who will ally with the BJP?
Vijayakanth's DMDK may play a key role as Tamil Nadu's political parties scramble for allies to capture the state's 40 Lok Sabha seats.
February 12, 2014'We have been treated well in India, this is the best model of refugee welfare'
65,000 Sri Lankan Tamil refugees still live in Tamil Nadu. Rediff.com's A Ganesh Nadar
discovers the challenges for the refugees to return home.
February 10, 2014Jaitley, Dwivedi change the rules of political engagement
Arun Jaitley and Janardan Dwivedi have rewritten the rules of politics in the Age of the Internet and its young and restless user base, reports Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt
Tamil Nadu health helpline: Medical advice is just a call awayA Ganesh Nadar
visits the bustling centre that hosts Tamil Nadu's health helpline that answers more than 100 medical queries an hour.
January 31, 2014'I love the current state India is in'
'We are bubbling with a lot of energy, both political and social... India needs to be a lot cleaner than it is right now. We need to respect our roads, and our public spaces,' says actress Nimrat Kaur
in the concluding feature of Rediff.com's special series -- What I love most about India.
'There is always a freshness about India'
'There's excitement. There's vibrancy. If it is politics, even if there's discussion and there's debate, there's vibrancy. That pretty much is the story of India,' says Union Minister Milind Deora
in Rediff.com's special series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
'The way I look at my mother is how I look at my country'
'Being Indian means everything to me. My existence is nothing without my country. It is not about what the country did for you, but what you did for your country,' says actor-director Shekhar Suman
, in our special series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
January 30, 2014'I like Indian people's sense of hope and optimism'
The thing I love most about India is the people. The people of our country have very big hearts and very broad shoulders. They are very hard working, very entrepreneurial and very generous of spirit, says banker-turned-politician Meera Sanyal.
January 29, 2014India will produce some nectar, but we will also produce some poison
'India is a part of me. Whatever I love or criticise about India is what I love and criticise about myself,' says novelist Vikram Chandra
January 28, 2014'Indians are very intelligent, but we are not focussed'
'I urge Indians not to look down on us, but look up and say, "Yes, we can",'says Dr Prathap C Reddy
, founder of the Apollo Hospitals, in our series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
'Khobragade affair shows we can't let matters drift'
'While the Khobragade affair has "upset and diverted attention, it does not mean there is a fundamental flaw in the US-India relationship",' former American envoy Frank Wisner tells Rediff.com's Aziz Haniffa
January 27, 2014'We can use India's many languages to fight the battle for civilisation'
'But we don't use our languages for that; we use them to create distances between ourselves,' says writer Jerry Pinto.
January 24, 2014'Our priority as a nation should be on human development'
'Health, food and sanitation have improved. Poverty has reduced. We could have done better in education and nutrition. Malnutrition levels are very disturbing. It is our biggest problem and it is invisible,' says Anuradha Gupta
, who spearheaded the successful campaign towards a polio-free India.
January 23, 2014India's top performing MP on why he loves India
'Indians are not greedy people. They don't want the moon. But they have a right to demand basic necessities. And these Indians have now become vociferous about these demands,' says Anandrao Vithoba Adsul
who will receive the Sansad Ratna award for raising the highest number of questions in Parliament.
January 22, 2014Sakshi Tanwar: 'Being Indian means everything to me'
'Each part of India has something to offer -- the mountains in the north, the sand dunes in the west, the heavenly valleys in the east, the sun, surf and sea in the south...With the Paradise on earth and God's own country here, we have the best, in any direction,' says popular television actress Sakshi Tanwar
in Rediff.com's continuing series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
January 21, 2014'India is in an unfinished story...'
'...and all of us need to do more to give it a happy Bollywood ending. I used to be a huge optimist but now I have become somewhat of a pessimist. As a country, we don't seem to want to get things right,' Sanjoy Roy
, producer of the Jaipur Literary Festival, the biggest free annual literary event in the world.
January 20, 2014'The Sri Lankan navy battered our boats'
'The food the Sri Lankans gave us was horrible. It used to stink. We used to throw most of it away... In the night my legs used to be in someone's face and his legs used to be in my lap. There was no space... There was no toilet... Both our bathing water and drinking water were salty. We had to beg the guards for clean drinking water.' Rediff.com's A Ganesh Nadar
speaks to Indian fishermen just released from Sri Lankan custody.
'We must put India and its people first, every time'
'We have to find a way to re-look our notion of Democracy. It has to be a vigorous, honest democracy. The Aam Aadmi Party has shown us the possibility of a different way of thinking, that is all. In its victory, there are shortfalls which might make it fail intrinsically,' says one of India's best-known theatre personalities Sunil Shanbag
Mamta Rawat: The unsung hero of Bankoli, Uttarakhand
Mamta Rawat is one among the thousands who were rendered homeless during the June 2013 Uttarakhand floods. Six months on, however, not much work on relocation or rehabilitation has started. And money is really not the issue.
January 17, 2014'I want an India strong, tender and considerate'
'Youth has the power to change whatever it wants. They are the future. Youth has the power to set fire to water,' says champion boxer Akhil Kumar
, in our continuing series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
Congress leader bequeaths property worth Rs 600 crore to servant
Fortune favours the brave, and the loyal. And Vinubhai Kanjibhai Jaipal, who served Gajrajsinh Jadeja unflinchingly through thick and thin, will attest to it, having inherited Rs 600 crore from his late employer, says Haresh Pandya
January 16, 2014Will SC be driven to implement a mechanism to deal with sexual harassment?
The highest court in the land will have to find a mechanism under which in future, if sexual harassment allegations are made against a judge, he/she will not go in the manner of Justice Ganguly. Hopefully, there will be some kind of system and guidelines to be followed by the accused and the victim, says Sheela Bhatt
Nawazuddin Siddiqui: 'We are the most accommodating people in the world'
'We go on to make a name for ourselves in the world, rise above the ordinary in the face of deprivation. The innate tendency to persevere is, I think, a great quality Indians possess,' says one of India's finest actors Nawazuddin Siddiqui
January 14, 2014'We have to travel around this country to know its heart'
'I hail from Sikkim and have strived to make a mark on the national scene. Generally whatever happens in the North-East remains confined to those parts. People from there are hard working and courteous. Only those who have visited and experienced their hospitality will relate to it,' says football star Baichung Bhutia
January 13, 2014Dhoom3 director: 'One man's telephone bill is another man's earnings for a year'
'In the freedom struggle and immediately after that, we had a sense of belonging to the same world, to the same country, to India. We have lost that sense of oneness. We have been manipulated and divided and that saddens me today, says Dhoom 3 Director Vijay Krishna Acharya.
January 10, 2014What drives women to become terrorists
Recruiting women works for the terror groups, as in most cases it is found that a woman draws less suspicion from security agencies. But the bigger advantage is that women terrorists have been found to get the job done nine out of 10 times, reports Vicky Nanjappa
January 09, 2014'My vision for India is where every citizen is equal in the eyes of one law'
How many who celebrate India's Republic Day and Independence Day know that the Indian tri-colour was first unfurled in Moirang in Manipur by the Indian National Army in 1944?
January 08, 2014Captain Gopinath: 'Youth need to understand the spirit of India'
'Corruption is the biggest problem confronting us. We need to bring about an urgent change in our way of life and also in the political scenario,' says Captain Gopinath
, founder of India's first low-cost airline Air Deccan who recently joined the Aam Aadmi Party, in our ongoing series celebrating the India we love.
January 07, 2014Soha Ali Khan: 'India is like one big happy family'
'2014 is an important year as everyone is obsessed about who is going to be the next prime minister but I think we need to see beyond that. The problems are going to be the same, irrespective of whichever party forms the government,' says actress Soha Ali Khan
in our special series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
January 06, 2014'The idea of India is special and achievable'
'Our priority should be inculcating a work culture and positive nationalism among people, especially the young,' says novelist Ankush Saikia
, in our continuing series where well-known Indians speak about the India they love.
January 03, 2014When Dr Singh played the perfect politician
The prime minister was aggressive during his interaction with the media, but no one came away enlightened on issues of governance of this complex country after hearing him for 75 minutes, says Sheela Bhatt
, who attended the press conference on Friday, January 3.
Arshad Warsi: 'We are a country with a solid backbone'
'India is like a world in itself. The sad part is that that the bad things overshadow the good,' says actor Arshad Warsi
in our special series where well-known Indians speak about the India they adore.
January 02, 2014'If we fished only in Indian waters, we would starve to death'
When over a hundred fishermen from Tamil Nadu were arrested by the Sri Lankan navy and their boats seized last month, fishermen in coastal Tamil Nadu went on strike. Rediff.com's A Ganesh Nadar
visits the coastal towns of Nagapattinam and Rameswaram to discover that the fishermen do not have many choices.
December 30, 2013'The Aam Aadmi Party is exactly what I am looking for'
'Our democracy is vibrant, it is functional, but it is not really a democracy... From the mid-1970s we have psephocracy. It is totally determined by the electoral process.' Ashis Nandy
, the distinguished social psychologist and thinker, on the India he admires and dislikes.
Year-end Special: The 7 incidents that SHOOK India in 2013
Many Indians will be thrilled to see the back of 2013, for it has largely been a rotten year, save for some. This year has been rocked by shockers after shockers -- the devastation in Uttarakhand which killed thousands, the Mumbai gang rape, Tarun Tejpal being accused of rape, godman Asaram and son being arrested for rape, the Afzal Guru execution and the SC verdict on gay sex, -- the list is seemingly endless.
December 20, 2013Year-end Special: 10 landmark judgments of 2013
If there was a year that redefined the concept of judicial activism in India, it could well be 2013.
December 19, 2013Year-end Special: Who is the most SHAMELESS of them all?
Here then, we present the Rediff Hall of Shame 2013, where we honour our so-called leaders for their tasteless comments and crass actions.
December 18, 2013Little Trust makes big impact in assessing TN's child development problemA Ganesh Nadar
profiles a non-governmental organisation that has revealed startling figures about the state's poor children.
December 17, 2013Director Imtiaz Ali on what fascinates him about India
'In Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, the winter population is only around 70 to 75 people. The residents go away to lesser cold places... Kashmir so multi-textured...
December 16, 2013Winning and losing in Kashmir
Why does the army remain embroiled in counter-insurgency, denying itself a peace dividend even after expending blood and treasure in imposing calm?
December 13, 2013Remembering apartheidArchana Shah
offers her memories of a childhood spent in apartheid South Africa.
December 10, 2013A matchbox house where Madiba dreamt of an equal South Africa
Rediff.com's Manu Shankar
had the privilege to visit the Mandela House in 2010. He recollects his experience.
December 09, 2013'I would like to see India become a developed country by 2022'
'I would like to change mindsets and break away from the stereotype; it is time for a new vision, new faces, new hope and new politics to take India forward,' says Member of Parliament Anurag Thakur
, in our continuing series where Indians talk about the India they love.
December 05, 2013'India allows me to be what I want to be'
India allows me to grow, allows me to think, allows me to blossom. We can open our arms and our hearts to the whole world and adapt what is good from other cultures and allow the bad to sift through, says India's very own pop diva Usha Uthup
December 04, 20132013 assembly elections: What the exit polls are saying
Exit polls on television channels on Monday predicted a clear win for the BJP in Madhya Pradesh and Delhi, while the polls suggest a tie between Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party and the Congress with around 18 seats each and a vote share of 28 per cent in Delhi.
December 02, 2013'If the world is the body, India is its soul'
'I sense a revolution coming. There is more awareness about what is going on around us. The indifference towards the state of the country is slowly disappearing. India has a lot to offer to this world and we are the ones who can make it happen,' says actor Vivek Oberoi.
Poll diary: Is Narendra Modi changing?
Why did the BJP mascot avoid Shahpura in Rajasthan? Illustration: Uttam Ghosh/Rediff.com.
November 29, 2013Can the NCW make a difference on crimes against women?
While courts are there to tackle crime and a few non-government organisations support victims of crime, NCW, a body empowered to take suo moto interest in a case, is in between, says Aparna Kalra
November 23, 2013Kunal Ghosh's arrest: Some questions for Mamata Banerjee, Trinamool
Will the arrest of renegade Trinamool Congress MP Kunal Ghosh take the lid off a can of worms, asks Indrani Roy
November 22, 2013'Tejpal should just go to the police station and surrender'
Kavita Srivastava, a Jaipur-based social activist, thinker and People's Union for Civil Liberties member, talked exclusively to rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt
on the issues and implications of the sexual assault case against Tehelka Editor Tarun Tejpal.
November 18, 2013Mumbai's 'ghetto' waits for a Cinderella makeover
Bhendi Bazaar faces a fairytale future as the Dawoodi Bohras initiate a Rs 3,000-crore project to change it from a squalid marketplace to a swanky neighbourhood, says Ranjita Ganesan
November 15, 2013Will Anthony's Moscow put the zing back in Indo-Russian defence ties?
INS Vikramaditya is not the only thing on Defence Minister AK Anthony's agenda during his current visit to Moscow. Also on the anvil is the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft joint development project which, if finalised and signed, could emerge as India's largest joint defence programme costing around 11 billion dollars, reports Nandan Unnikrishnan
November 12, 2013'Indian architecture is far superior than any other in the world'
'This is because we are a blend of many and we take the best from each,' says Wajahat Habibullah
, Chairman, National Commission for Minorities.
November 09, 2013Why Indian bureaucracy is under virtual lockdown
Recent investigations into the telecom spectrum and coal scams have made bureaucrats very wary of taking decisions.
November 08, 2013The dismal story of India's vote share
The five-state assembly elections are only three days away with the first phase in Chhattisgarh scheduled for Monday. And even in this poll season, vote share continues to a debatable topic.
November 07, 2013'Despite the differences, we are united by the notion of India'
Today, a large number of young people have amazing ideas for this country. The youth is willing to believe that we can make it work. I am one of them, says Malvika Bhatia
who works for a non-profit organisation aimed at addressing voter apathy amongst India's youth.
November 06, 2013Special: Meet the Castros!
Vice President Hamid Ansari's visit to Havana provided rare insights of the Castro brothers, Fidel and Raul. Rediff.com's Nikhil Lakshman
November 05, 2013'Only I know how much Nehru toiled for India'
We reproduce an appreciation article that Sardar Patel wrote on October 14, 1949, a month before Nehru's 60th birthday, where he heaped praises on Nehru's merits and also went on to elaborate the deep ties he shared with him.
'In those days, rocket parts and payloads were transported by bicycle'
ISRO's expedition to Mars is yet another breathtaking adventure for an organisation created by Dr Vikram Sarabhai and carefully nurtured by scientists like A P J Abdul Kalam and R Aravamudan.
October 31, 2013'Everyone feels at home in Delhi. It is home to everyone'
'Delhi represents the composite culture of our country. You will find people from every state of the country here. Every language in the country is spoken here. There is more history here than any city in the country,' says writer-columnist Sadia Dehlvi.
October 30, 2013Rajendra Yadav's passing signals the end of an eraApoorvanand
pays tribute to much-loved and admired Hindi literary great who passed into the ages on Monday.
'India is not only a country; it's more like a continent'
'We have liberals here, we have conservatives. We have wisdom here, we have silliness. We are a motley gathering of every kind of people...
October 28, 2013Actor Akshay Kumar on his India
'To start walking on the path towards making India a better nation, we don't need to take giant strides. Small steps, taken regularly - even when it is not convenient to do so - will work just as well,' says Actor Akshay Kumar, in our special series where well-known Indians speak about their India.
October 23, 2013Sino-Indian talks: Tangible progress, better atmosphericsSheela Bhatt
, who is travelling with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on his two-nation visit, analyses the outcome of crucial talks between the PM and his Chinese counterpart in Beijing.
'There is nothing in the world you cannot find in India'
'I also love the fact that there are always sensible people here, even when everything around you is collapsing, says former chief election commissioner JM Lyngdoh, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com why they love India.
October 22, 2013'If I could change just one thing in India, I would abolish the caste system'
'There is a human aspect to relationships in India which is missing in the West... but what really makes me sad with our country is that we don't have our best people in politics,' says politician, academician, activist Dr Subramanian Swamy
October 21, 2013'I hope India will win 10 medals, including 2 golds, in the next Olympics'
'My vision for India is a clean and corruption-free country. The youth need to be actively involved in politics and policy making. It is easy to complain but tough to make a positive difference,' says former Indian hockey captain Viren Rasquinha
, COO, Olympic Gold Quest.
October 14, 2013'Small town India has more zeal, they want to achieve something'
O saare jag ke rakhwale
October 11, 2013Special Series: The story of IPKF in Sri Lanka
We present to you a special series that we had done 10 years after the IPKF withdrew from the island nation
October 10, 2013Boxing superstar Mary Kom on her beloved India
I am a fan of the co-existence of different castes and creed in my beloved country...
October 09, 2013'However rich or poor she may be, India has the best looking women'
'What we need to do is to improve our standard of honesty as people as a whole. We need our leaders to be true patriots. This means the country first every time.
October 07, 2013Are India and Bangladesh choosing pragmatism over politics?
The compulsions of domestic politics notwithstanding, India and Bangladesh script a new story in bilateral relations, say Nayanima Basu and Aditi Phadnis
October 04, 2013'Visiting India is equal to doing a world tour'
'India is a world in itself...
October 03, 2013'India's people are its real heroes'
'We have the most fertile land in the world. The Ganga and the Brahmaputra flow through our country. Yet our people starve... This is a criminal neglect of our natural resources... People's entrepreneurial spirit, their innovations... their desire to be better is always refreshing. They have done this inspite of the government,' says legendary journalist Olga Tellis, one of India's finest reporters.
October 01, 2013'India's youth hasn't inherited the fear of its previous generation'
This generation has a lot more direction than the previous one because unlike them, the young today do not lack clarity. They dare to think different and operate with a can-do attitude and confidence. Today's youth is charting new territories not being afraid of the storm, choosing rather to ride into it and creating their own path, says MTV Roadies Host Raghu Ram.
September 30, 2013P V Sindhu: If we work hard, we will be world beaters
'I dream of a corruption-free India. Corruption is a cancer that has eaten up our vitals. Imagine if every paisa meant for development went for development,' says badminton champ P V Sindhu, the first Indian woman to win a bronze medal at the World Championships.
September 26, 2013India-US Summit Special, Edited by Ambassador Nirupama Rao
For the first time in the 43-year-old India Abroad newspaper's history, a Guest Editor was invited to edit the special magazine issue.
'India is where the heart is'
'Societies have cyclical times and we are in one of those... The most troubling part of India is that it doesn't provide equal opportunities for everybody to get a leg up... Somehow the opportunities are not there for everybody. They are for a select few, and so many of the 1.2 billion people are getting left behind,' says Swati Ramanathan, co-founder, Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy, in a special series where various Indian tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
September 25, 2013'Elite vent their ire on Twitter, FB and think their job is done'
The middle class represents 30 per cent of our population. They are not represented in Parliament or the assemblies as they are just not bothered! They do not vote. They do not take part in any civic, social or political activity. How can they be like this, asks Pradyot Bikram Manikya Deb Burman, editor-political activist and head of the Tripura royal family.
September 24, 2013'Even after repeated assaults, Kashmiri culture stands tall'
'To be an Indian born in Kashmir has been a fantastic thing which god gave me. Kashmir gave me the sensitivity to look at things,' says santoor artist Abhay Rustum Sopori, the ninth generation of a well-known family of artistes who follow the Shaivite Sufi tradition. He recently presented a fusion piece jointly with Zubin Mehta in Srinagar.
September 23, 2013'Being Indian is being democratic, loving cinema and cricket'
'If diversity is our strength, it is also our shortcoming, because we live in two separate nations -- urban India and rural India. There should be some semblance between these two Indias,' feels actor Ayushmann Khurana, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
September 21, 2013US, India should try to keep Lanka away from China's sway
Since the US and India broadly share similar interests in Sri Lanka, they should coordinate closely to ensure that the country preserves its democratic institutions, says Lisa Curtis
September 20, 2013The two places all Indians must go to
The Cellular Jail and the Viper Island are two places in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands that should be like a pilgrimage for all Indians, says Bishnu Pada Ray, the two-time BJP MP from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, in our special series where various Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
September 19, 2013How Muzaffarnagar riots will impact 2014 elections
Though Muslims have been trusted allies of Jats since the days of former Prime Minister Charan Singh, experts feel the alliance has had its share of strains following his death in 1987
September 18, 2013'The unprotected class of workers is the real India'
The real contributors of labour, of skill and even technological input, all come from this (96 per cent) category and I love them. No communal riots, least of caste-ism in these communities.
September 16, 2013'India badly needs a modern Gandhi today'
Today the common man is not angry because of the corruption in the country, he is angry because he is a victim of corruption, says filmmaker Prakash Jha, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com why they love India
September 13, 2013'Nobody gives up in India. Or on India'
'India stands out in the world because of its ability to absorb, survive, bounce back and stay together despite daunting odds.
September 12, 2013'No other country fascinates me more than India'
'I am so proud to be born in this country. The emotions that run through the veins of the population keep me alive. I have been to so many countries but nowhere have I come across souls more passionate than Indians, says Filmmaker Shoojit Sircar, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com why they love India.
September 11, 2013Why every Indian must salute this Indian
'It is also very sad that many of us are yet to discover the Northeastern part of India. After having been to every state of India, people often refuse to believe that I am an Indian,' says Armstrong Pame, the admirable IAS officer from Manipur, who built a 100 km long road in a remote part of the hill state without government help.
September 10, 2013Investigation: Are BJP leaders being targeted in Tamil Nadu?
The Tamil Nadu state unit of the BJP has been alleging that its leaders have been systematically being attacked/murdered in the state. A Ganesh Nadar
bring to light five cases where workers of the BJP or its affiliate organisations were attacked to find out if there is any truth in the charges.
'India has given me the wild tiger and my work with it'
'The most special part of India for me is where there is genuine peace
September 06, 2013Prasoon Joshi: 'The threshold of our patience has been reached'
'Let us acknowledge this and let us lead that change. Even as we change, let us not forget to love the complexity of our country and revel in its multiculturalism. Let us not forget that we've always given space for the smallest voices and the tiniest murmurs and make space for disagreements,' says writer-poet-ad guru Prasoon Joshi.
September 05, 2013Hoisting the Indian flag where no one else has
I can never forget the day when in a remote corner of the planet that mariners call the Horn, or the Everest of the Seas, I hoisted the Indian flag on my boat and gave a salute to our tricolour. It was the proudest moment of my life, says Indian Navy Lieutenant Commander Abhilash Tomy, the first Indian and second Asian to solo circumnavigate the globe on a sailboat -- nonstop and unassisted.
The Great Escape: India's unsung war heroes
Three Indian Air Force officers held as Prisoners of War in a jail in Rawalipindi made a heroic escape. They reached as far as the Pak-Afghan border in Pakistan's Wild West -- within sniffing distance of freedom -- only to realise that they had finally met their match. Or so it seemed.
September 04, 2013'The story of India is an incredible story'
I can't survive a week without speaking in Hindi. I start feeling claustrophobic. I start feeling that I need air...
An Indian Prisoner of War escape story
Three Indian Air Force officers captured as Prisoners of War by Pakistan during the '71 War made a daring escape from a Rawalpindi jail. M P Anil Kumar
recounts that heroic story.
September 03, 2013Parineeti Chopra: 'India has the perfect balance'
'Most countries are either very modern and detached from their families and their culture, and they are only having fun in life, or they are very family-oriented. I think India has the perfect balance of both, which is amazing,' says actor Parineeti Chopra.
August 30, 2013'No athlete can underestimate the prayers of a billion people'
India has celebrated with great vigour the achievement of each and every athlete, as much as its cricket team, says Olympic bronze medalist Gagan Narang
, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 29, 2013All you wanted to know about the food security billSakshi Balani
presents an FAQ on the Food Security Bill that was passed by Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
August 28, 2013'The most lovable attribute of India is our resilience'
'Our democracy is in form. Our judicial institution is broadly fine. Our parliamentary system is by and large working fine... The only segment I am deeply concerned with are the tribals. They are kept out of the development processes, says Arun Jaitley, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com why they love India.
August 27, 2013Ajay Devgn: Today's youth is aggressive because it's concerned about India
Today, people fight for the rights of someone they don't know. They participate in protests to react to something they feel is not right, says actor Ajay Devgn
, in our special series where well-known Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 26, 2013Rashmi Bansal: I grew up believing that India Can!
India can launch a rocket into space, grow its own food and make its own dams. That's something to be proud of, and I certainly am.
August 22, 2013'We still have time for each other in India'
Our beloved country although evolving still, retains a precious simplicity. We still have time to visit one another without having to make appointments, says Neil Nongkynrih
, founder of the famous Shillong Chamber Choir, as we continue our special series where 66 Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 20, 2013Ahmed Patel: The common men and women keep India going
'I salute the spirit of the common men and women of India. They are very accommodative. They see beyond politics and strife; they are religious and reasonable, says Congress leader Ahmed Patel in an exclusive feature, celebrating our special series where 66 Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 19, 2013Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: India's 7 great strengths
'Spirituality, without which India would have become like the Balkan States a long time ago,' says Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, continuing our Independence Day special series where 66 well-known Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 16, 2013'Gujarat throws many interesting surprises at you'
What is it about India that tugs at the chords of our hearts?
August 14, 2013India,66: 'India is being built by its people'
What is it about India that tugs at the chords of our hearts? What makes this often beautiful, often frustrating, country the best country in the world for us? Why does it deserve to be celebrated and constantly nurtured? This Independence Day, well-known Indians tell Rediff.com what they love most about India.
August 02, 2013The story of a weak and crumbling UPA II
From the economy to foreign policy issues, to addressing the serious challenge posed by communal forces which are out to viciously polarise and divide Indian society, the UPA II government has shown a certain pronounced weakness and lack of vision and commitment that could seriously harm India in the long run, notes Sanjay Kapoor
July 29, 2013How MPs misuse thier MPLADS funds
Public Money, Private Agenda -- The Use and Abuse of MPLADS by A Surya Prakash provides a comprehensive look at the Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme, which was launched 20 years ago in 1993. Excerpts from the book.
July 26, 2013The misunderstood Nehru
Arun Nehru's image of a political strategist, dealmaker and trouble shooter never allowed him to become a political leader of people, says Sheela Bhatt
July 15, 2013Stop! Tales of a village telegraphist
P Murugesan has been sending telegrams for 33 years in rural Tamil Nadu. He remembers hectic marriage seasons, many moons ago, when everyone sent telegrams. And days when even 15 Morse machines could not handle the load...
July 11, 2013The big, deep game being played by Digvijaya Singh
By all accounts Digvijaya Singh is serving Rahul Gandhi's purpose of pushing himself into orbit over Narendra Modi, but he is also pushing his own case by his brazen tweets and bold assertions in the social media and in public acrimonies. But there is a limit to all games, writes Sheela Bhatt
July 01, 2013Escaping the Spiti snowstorm
Rediff.com columnist Yoginder Sikand
recounts his near-death experience during a recent trip to Tabo, a small town on the banks of the Spiti river in Himachal Pradesh.
June 28, 2013God forbid if Chidambaram had his way with gas prices today
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs on Thursday steeply increased the price of gas, hitting the aam-aadmi, also gave a meagre hike to the minimum support price of food-grains, adversely affecting farmers, reports Sheela Bhatt
June 25, 2013Nets in the sky and traps on the ground
China has been keeping tabs on the restive Tibet province through a 'grid' system and some 600 'convenience police posts' armed with high-tech equipment that monitor the daily life of the citizens of Lhasa and other Tibetan towns. Worse, 'volunteer security groups' known as 'Red Armband Patrols' are roaming around in order to get more information and 'classify' each and every citizen, says Claude Arpi
June 19, 2013N India floods: Religious tourism eroding ecological heritage
Disaster in Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh can be blamed on myopic industrialisation, urbanisation and tourism policies.
June 17, 2013Gujarat leaders fight the UP battle for Congress and BJP
The battle for Uttar Pradesh will now be fought by two Gujarat leaders for their respective parties, reports Saroj Nagi
June 13, 2013Govt rolls out cyber security framework
The framework aims at creating a secure cyber space for users to enjoy confidence in electronic transactions, reports Ajai Shukla
June 10, 2013Advani's pre-emptive strike to stop Modi as PM candidate
L K Advani had no option but to strike now to ensure that Modi is not announced as the prime ministerial candidate under any circumstances before the general election, says Sheela Bhatt
June 09, 2013Exclusive! Modi will lead the BJP in Lok Sabha election
Narendra Modi will be the face of the BJP, the symbol of anti-Congress sentiment and the messiah of the Indian middle class in the general election, reports Sheela Bhatt
June 04, 2013'Nitish Kumar is a one-man-show, isn't Gujarat also?'
'We had become buffoons with Lalu. If you were a Bihari you were seen as a buffoon -- that has changed. Now there's a pride in being Bihari.' Archana Masih reports on the changes in Bihar.
May 28, 2013Everest @ 60: 'Tenzing and Hillary inspire every mountaineer'
In an e-mail interview on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the conquest of Mt Everest by Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, Mark Joseph Inglis shares his life, challenges and the delight in climbing the peak
May 22, 2013A bloodied childhood in war-torn Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan Tamil poet and journalist Theepachelvan Pratheepan shares the experiences during his petrified childhood days spent in the war-torn island nation with Rediff.com's Shobha Warrier
May 21, 2013Tracking the betting racket: How the Mumbai police does it
'If the bookie and the gamblers are sitting in the same room and watching TV we will not be able to catch them. Only when there is some communication on the phone or over the internet will we have a chance to find out what is going on.' A Ganesh Nadar
gets a top Mumbai cop to spill the beans on how the betting racket functions
May 20, 2013India-China talks: Read the full joint statement
At the invitation of Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, Li Keqiang, Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China, is on a state visit to India from May 19 to 22.
May 14, 2013Asghar Ali Engineer: Simple, fearless, straight from the heart
Renowned Islamic scholar Asghar Ali Engineer, who passed away in Mumbai on Tuesday , was opposed to all forms of religious bigotry including by the clergy of his own faith. For opposing the Syedna, spiritual of Dawoodi Bohras, Engineer faced scorn, boycott and even, sometimes, violence. In February 2000 Dilip D'souza had chronicled in Rediff.com one such assault on Asghar Ali Engineer; we reproduce it here. In Tribute.
May 13, 2013Congress gameplan behind Digvijaya's dare to SC
His provocative comments are the first political steps taken by the Congress to handle the coal scam and its fall-out, says Sheela Bhatt
May 09, 2013'Indian Special Forces are tied up in bureaucratic hierarchy'
Special Forces are a vital element of national power, possessing enormous freedom of action and should be fruitfully employed to successfully meet future challenges, say Lieutenant General P C Katoch and journalist Saikat Dutta.
May 02, 2013'How could we get back Sarabjit from a bunch of barbarians?'
A senior government officer, who was dealing with Pakistan on sensitive and strategic issues, tells Sheela Bhatt
that Pakistan never wanted Sarabit Singh to return to India and share all that he knew. He says the the killing of the Indian convict in a Lahore jail was a planned murder.
Coal-gate: PM briefed by 2 law officers before CBI plea
The prime minister wasn't comfortable with the series of events in the coal block allotment scam probe, including the uncontested detailed letter sent by Additional Solicitor General Harin P Raval (who quit on Tuesday) to Attorney General Goolam E Vahanvati recalling every instance much to the embarrassment of the government, reports Rakesh Bhatnagar
April 30, 2013Rediff SENTIMETER: Figure out how Karnataka will vote
Welcome to our interactive map showing which way Karnataka will vote in 2013.
April 26, 2013CBI chief's revelation on coal-gate embarrasses govt
The revelation by CBI director Ranjit Sinha that the law minister and other officials had vetted a status report on coal-gate which was submitted to the SC may result in a severe grilling for Ashwani Kumar when the SC hears the case on April 30. Rakesh Bhatnagar
April 15, 2013'India must use special forces better against Pak, China'
Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt
talks to Lieutenant General P C Katoch and journalist Saikat Dutta on how India has failed to strategically employ its considerable number of special forces especially in creating deterrence against the asymmetric war unleashed upon us by both Pakistan and China since past several years, and that we need to right this urgently.
April 12, 2013Mamatadi, this is not the poriborton we sought
We want a change in Bengal again -- but this time a change in the real sense of the term, writes Indrani Roy
in an open letter to the West Bengal chief minister
April 05, 2013Rafale deal on slow track as graft charges worry Antony
Although officially the IAF and MoD continue to maintain that negotiations are on track and should be concluded soon, the reality is that even small acquisitions are on the backburner, says RS Chauhan
March 25, 2013'China-India maritime rivalry is NOT inevitable'
A senior government source explains to Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt
why India cannot pre-judge a rivalry with China.
Shailesh Gandhi and the under-trials in jail
For former central information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi, the RTI Act remains a powerful ally, finds A Ganesh Nadar
March 19, 2013Why Jayalalitha is happiest at the DMK pullout from UPA
The DMK will not regret parting company with the Congress as Karunanidhi knows that in this era of coalitions, it is impossible for the Congress-led government to seek a third term, given its track of record of scams. Even otherwise, the Congress has no base in Tamil Nadu where it has been out of power since 1967, says S Murari
March 11, 2013PHOTOS: Inside the ultimate pop-up mega city
Every 12 years comes a mystical, mind-boggling phenomenon. It is the Maha Kumbh Mela. Harvard experts map the exotic and the mundane at the spectacle. Arthur J Pais
March 08, 2013It's a woman's world: Miners, eagle hunter, bomb expert
As our salute to women on their day, we present images from across the world showing how the fairer sex has broken deep-rooted barriers to leave a mark in our male-dominated society.
February 20, 2013Helicopter deal: India's jinxed Westland saga
India's dealings with Westland Helicopters, before it merged in March 1999 with Italy's Finmeccanica subsidiary to become AgustaWestland, were technically problematical and politically questionable.
February 16, 2013Cong reflecting on simultaneous state and general polls?
Congress is wary that state elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and New Delhi to be held in December will impact its prospects in the 2014 general elections. Sheela Bhatt
February 13, 2013Copter scam puts defence agents back in spotlight
With the latest AgustaWestland helicopter import scandal, it is time to re-examine the role of the ubiquitous but ostensibly banned defence agents, middlemen, intermediaries, brokers, consultants, weapon merchants or reps as they are variously known, says Rahul Bedi
February 12, 2013Iftikhar Gilani: The police locked up my children
'Eight policemen were sitting in my drawing room, feeling at home. They had locked up my 13-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son in a room that did not have a toilet.' Onkar Singh
reports on Iftikhar Gilani's plight after Afzal Guru's execution.
Hope in Kerala's poison fields
After suffering from severe exposure to endosulfan for decades, the villagers of Kasargod are finally moving on. But the scars remain, T E Narasimhan
February 09, 2013Timing of execution clearly political
'The hanging has made Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah's position very vulnerable. The government has created an issue in Kashmir when there was none.'
'Bold decision and the ends of justice had to be met'
'Where is the question of not hanging Afzal Guru when the case was an open and shut one,' former R&AW chief C D Sahay tells Rediff.com's Vicky Nanjappa
February 07, 2013China's dams on Brahmaputra can be dangerous business
India should take up the issue in the strongest way with Beijing. But the solution is definitively not building more dams in Arunachal Pradesh, cautions Claude Arpi
January 25, 2013R-day Special: The men who protect India's honour
On Republic Day, nine bravehearts of the Indian Army, who risked -- and in some cases lost -- their lives to defend their nation, will be honoured for their acts of exceptional gallantry. Let us join the rest of the nation in honouring these real-life heroes.
R-Day special: Meet India's young braveheartsPriyanka
catches up with India's little champions on the eve of Republic Day as they narrate their stories.
January 21, 2013The Rafale deal and why it makes China nervous
The People's Daily, the Chinese Communist newspaper, says the sale of the Rafale fighter plane 'encourages, excites and spurs India's appetite and ambition to become a great military power.' Does India have a choice, considering the People's Liberation Army's frantic speed of development, wonders Claude Arpi
Exclusive: Priyanka tweaked Rahul's speech
What most people don't know is that the emotional flourishes and notes, the memories about Rahul's father Rajiv Gandhi and grandmother Indira Gandhi, the point about his mother Sonia coming into his room late on Saturday night and weeping, in the speech were added by his sister Priyanka Gandhi.
January 20, 2013Rahul: Last night, my mother came to my room and cried
On such a historic day in the 127-year-old Congress party's history, Rahul Gandhi presented himself as a dreamy-eyed idealist who is trying to be a visionary instead of an Indian leader keen to be a man of steel to take on the hard realities of India. Sheela Bhatt
assesses Rahul Gandhi's emotional first speech as Congress vice-president.
January 19, 2013What Rahul Gandhi's elevation means for the Congress
The Congress Working Committee anointed Rahul Gandhi as party vice-president at the party's Chintan Shivir in Jaipur on Saturday. He is now the official number two in the Congress, paving the way for his projection as the party's prime ministerial candidate in the run up to the 2014 general elections.
January 14, 2013'We don't want our salaries, we just want to go home'
Despite Union Minister for Overseas Indians Vayalar Ravi's intervention, the fate of 29 Indian fishermen, who have been languishing in Iran since October 10 last year, remains uncertain.
January 04, 2013Bihar village waits for a special guest of honour
Wajitpura village in Bihar's Patna district is gearing up to welcome a special visitor. The mehman (guest) is the rashtrapati (president) of a country once known as mirich desh by residents of rural Bihar and Uttar Pradesh many decades ago.
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