Sheela Bhatt

Sheela Bhatt, arguably India's finest political journalist, has covered Indian politics for 40 years. You can e-mail the author at sheelakb@rediffmail.com

All stories by Sheela Bhatt

'When we fight a war we forget the danger'

'When we fight a war we forget the danger'

Rediff.com16 Sep 2017

'The Indian Air Force wanted to fight. My squadron leaders and flight lieutenants, all of us were eager to fight. Unless they are keen I can't have confidence.' Marshal of the Air Force, the legendary Arjan Singh, on the 1965 War.

'India must use special forces against Pakistan'

'India must use special forces against Pakistan'

Rediff.com23 Sep 2016

'The era of conventional wars is almost over in the Indian context.' 'In such a scenario, special forces could play a decisive strategic role in the spectrum of conflict.'

Why has history forgotten this giant?

Why has history forgotten this giant?

Rediff.com8 Jan 2016

Anil Shastri, one of the late prime minister's six children, recounts memories of his father.

'Our people are disillusioned over peace with Pakistan'

'Our people are disillusioned over peace with Pakistan'

Rediff.com7 Dec 2015

'Pakistan's capacity to carry a normal relationship with India doesn't exist.' 'The relationship with Pakistan is less important than several others.'

The lady behind one of Time's 100 influential people

The lady behind one of Time's 100 influential people

Rediff.com11 Sep 2015

Sheela Bhatt meets Bharti Patel, a truly exceptional mother of our times whose son Dr Vikram Patel was recently ranked among Time magazine's 100 most influential people of 2015, to find out her recipe for a remarkable upbringing.

Four takeaways from Lok Sabha's Lalitgate debate

Four takeaways from Lok Sabha's Lalitgate debate

Rediff.com13 Aug 2015

'One won't find a lawyer in any court in the country willing to believe that a talented lawyer like Bansuri Swaraj would appear in a case for free, that too in a metropolis like Delhi.' These and other Sheela Bhatt takeways from the August 12 proceedings in the Lok Sabha.

Exclusive! 'By 2012, we brought China boundary row to point of solution'

Exclusive! 'By 2012, we brought China boundary row to point of solution'

Rediff.com10 Aug 2015

A sensational interview on India-China ties, with the man most qualified to answer.

'Terrorism is something you have to deal with. But that is a political call'

'Terrorism is something you have to deal with. But that is a political call'

Rediff.com10 Aug 2015

'If you say I won't talk to them at all, does terrorism stop?' 'Even if they say they will give up terrorism, "I will fight terrorism along with you," but even then you say I still won't talk to you until you do the following things, then that is a political call.'

In response to Nitish, NDA to write open letter to Biharis

In response to Nitish, NDA to write open letter to Biharis

Rediff.com5 Aug 2015

The letter, to be written by the NDA's Bihari leaders, will mention that Modi was not talking about 'Bihar's DNA' but he was pointing towards the 'political DNA' of Nitish Kumar. The letter will also ask a few uncomfortable questions to the Bihar chief minister. Sheela Bhatt reports.

It is important to know the truth in the Yakub Memon case

It is important to know the truth in the Yakub Memon case

Rediff.com29 Jul 2015

'B Raman knew that Yakub Memon should not be given the capital punishment but at the same time he harboured too much anger against Dawood Ibrahim and 'Tiger' Memon, and wanted to see that they do not stand to gain in the legal process in any manner whatsoever.'

I can vouch for Raman's column on Yakub Memon: Brother

I can vouch for Raman's column on Yakub Memon: Brother

Rediff.com25 Jul 2015

I well remember the article you have published because prior to sending it to you, he had shown it to me and I can vouch for its contents in the form in which you have published it. That was why I gave the permission to Rediff.com for publishing it,' says B S Raghavan, the distinguished retired IAS officer who himself handled intelligence matters for nine years.

How the BJP plans to strike back in 'washout' monsoon session

How the BJP plans to strike back in 'washout' monsoon session

Rediff.com22 Jul 2015

The calculated playing up of confidence by Amit Shah and his team obviously means that the BJP has a strong counter-strategy in place to turn the tables on the Congress before the monsoon session is over, reports Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com.

From Rediff Archives: The strange case of Yakub Memon

From Rediff Archives: The strange case of Yakub Memon

Rediff.com21 Jul 2015

Back in 2007, Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt had profiled Yakub after he was sentenced to death by the Terrorist and Disruptive Actives (Prevention) Act court for criminal conspiracy and financing air tickets to send co-conspirators for arms and RDX training to Pakistan.

Pakistan has not even made a turn, leave alone a U-turn

Pakistan has not even made a turn, leave alone a U-turn

Rediff.com15 Jul 2015

'India has to judge what Pakistan says to us, not what they say to a domestic audience,' a source tells Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com, explaining why India-Pakistan talks remain on track despite discordant noises from across the border.

From Rediff Archives: The strange case of Yakub Memon

From Rediff Archives: The strange case of Yakub Memon

Rediff.com15 Jul 2015

Back in 2007, Rediff.com's Sheela Bhatt had profiled Yakub after he was sentenced to death by the Terrorist and Disruptive Actives (Prevention) Act court for criminal conspiracy and financing air tickets to send co-conspirators for arms and RDX training to Pakistan.

Lalu-Mulayam-Mamata-Mayawati absence makes Sonia's iftar a political miss

Lalu-Mulayam-Mamata-Mayawati absence makes Sonia's iftar a political miss

Rediff.com14 Jul 2015

Sonia Gandhi's iftar was meant to be a powerful show of unity of Opposition parties to take on the Modi Sarkar, but that was not to be...

Advani destroyed Agra summit with Pakistan: A S Dulat

Advani destroyed Agra summit with Pakistan: A S Dulat

Rediff.com6 Jul 2015

Pakistan made a tactical error in not investing enough in L K Advani, former R&AW chief A S Dulat tells Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com

In the middle of Ramzan, Modi to visit 5 Islamic nations

In the middle of Ramzan, Modi to visit 5 Islamic nations

Rediff.com4 Jul 2015

It's a packed 5-nation, 9-day, visit for Prime Minister Modi as he heads to Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan, apart from Ufa in Russia.

'Sonia and Rajiv had no role in the Emergency'

'Sonia and Rajiv had no role in the Emergency'

Rediff.com26 Jun 2015

'I do not think Rajiv Gandhi at that stage had any influence on his mother. Indira Gandhi relied totally on Sanjay and she looked upon him as a dependable son.' 'What really affected people and eventually Indira Gandhi was the sterilisation drive. She lost so badly in north India because of these drives.' 'She is the one who has given this aura of 'the family' to the Gandhis.' The second and final part of veteran journalist Coomi Kapoor, whose book The Emergency: A Personal Account was published recently, to Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com about Independent India's darkest phase.

'Emergency was a time when everyone was scared'

'Emergency was a time when everyone was scared'

Rediff.com26 Jun 2015

Veteran journalist Coomi Kapoor, whose book came out recently, speaks to Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com about Independent India's darkest phase.

'Lalitgate like Bofors, is there a V P Singh in this government or outside?'

'Lalitgate like Bofors, is there a V P Singh in this government or outside?'

Rediff.com25 Jun 2015

Lalitgate is so much like the Bofors arms scandal that eventually brought down the Rajiv Gandhi government despite his humongous parliamentary majority, Trinamool Congress MP Dinesh Trivedi tells Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com.

L'affaire Sushma Swaraj marks end of Modi Sarkar's honeymoon

L'affaire Sushma Swaraj marks end of Modi Sarkar's honeymoon

Rediff.com16 Jun 2015

Right now, in Modi's Cabinet and in the BJP, there is no challenge whatsoever to Modi's leadership but even those leaders who have some potential, who the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh can think of backing in an unforeseen circumstance, are fast turning into damaged goods, reports Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com.

Why Modi stood by an embattled Sushma Swaraj

Why Modi stood by an embattled Sushma Swaraj

Rediff.com15 Jun 2015

Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com decodes why Modi has decided to retain her in the Union Cabinet despite this controversy and their many internal differences.

Myanmar 'hot pursuit' was planned before Manipur ambush

Myanmar 'hot pursuit' was planned before Manipur ambush

Rediff.com10 Jun 2015

The counter-insurgency operation on the Indo-Myanmar was under planning for the last three months. The June 4 ambush that killed 18 Indian soldiers only hastened the attack. Sheela Bhatt provides exclusive details of the planning for the operation.

Why did Lalu Yadav surrender to Nitish Kumar?

Why did Lalu Yadav surrender to Nitish Kumar?

Rediff.com9 Jun 2015

Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com explains the compulsions that forced Bihar strongman Lalu Yadav to play second fiddle to Nitish Kumar.

'India has a vital stake in the digital renaissance'

'India has a vital stake in the digital renaissance'

Rediff.com5 Jun 2015

'Everywhere our younger computer professionals are in the forefront, defending our national interest in every forum and keeping our flag flying high.'

'We now have a prime minister who talks'

'We now have a prime minister who talks'

Rediff.com2 Jun 2015

'This is not a small change, it's a BIG change. People wanted to hear the voice of their PM. They can do so now. This is a big parivartan.'

K V Chowdary tipped to be new CVC, Vijai Sharma may be CIC

K V Chowdary tipped to be new CVC, Vijai Sharma may be CIC

Rediff.com2 Jun 2015

The anti-corruption watchdog posts have been vacant for the last nine months.

'Modi's Kashmir policy is very imaginative'

'Modi's Kashmir policy is very imaginative'

Rediff.com29 May 2015

'I could have never imagined any other prime minister giving time to a separatist leader.' 'I think the Hurriyat should not be ignored. I think like Pakistan, they are being unnecessarily ignored.' A S Dulat, the former RA&W chief who visited Kashmir recently, speaks to Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com

'Mufti now is very different from the Mufti of 2002'

'Mufti now is very different from the Mufti of 2002'

Rediff.com29 May 2015

'Mufti is much more mellowed, much more accommodating. He knows he is stuck and he knows that he cannot retreat now.'

Why did Dr Singh walk into Modi's web?

Why did Dr Singh walk into Modi's web?

Rediff.com28 May 2015

Appraising Rediff.com about the meeting, a source close to Dr Singh said Modi sought Dr Singh's advice on the economy and foreign policy. Dr Singh told Modi that he concurs with the Reserve Bank of India's concerns about the Indian economy.

'What will someone do within a year?'

'What will someone do within a year?'

Rediff.com27 May 2015

Why this non-BJP MP became a Modi bhakt.

Amit Shah exclusive 2: 'We have added nishtha, sincerity of purpose, to governance'

Amit Shah exclusive 2: 'We have added nishtha, sincerity of purpose, to governance'

Rediff.com19 May 2015

The second part of BJP president Amit Shah's interview to Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com, to mark the completion of one year of the Narendra Modi government.

Amit Shah exclusive: 'Not an inch of acquired land will go to industrialists'

Amit Shah exclusive: 'Not an inch of acquired land will go to industrialists'

Rediff.com19 May 2015

In the first part of an exclusive interview with Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com on the eve of the first year of the Narendra Modi-led NDA government, BJP President Amit Shah talks about the government's achievements and the controversy over the land ordinance.

Modi@1: Exclusive interview with Amit Shah!

Modi@1: Exclusive interview with Amit Shah!

Rediff.com19 May 2015

On the occasion of the Narendra Modi government completing one year in office, Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com speaks to BJP president Amit Shah who is yin to Modi's yang. Don't miss it!

Beyond great 'optics', no great push in Indo-China ties

Beyond great 'optics', no great push in Indo-China ties

Rediff.com15 May 2015

Modi's arrival has changed the optics of the visit. There is a different demonstration of the confidence level in the Indian leadership, but not much has changed beyond that, reports Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com.

Why Modi means business with China

Why Modi means business with China

Rediff.com14 May 2015

'The image of Modi as a tough taskmaster is completely wrong'

'The image of Modi as a tough taskmaster is completely wrong'

Rediff.com28 Apr 2015

'Our intentions are clear. If I keep all the acquired land under the ownership of the government, why do you raise questions about my intentions?' 'One achievement of my ministry would be the gas pricing policy. Two, we made a delivery mechanism (for domestic LPG) which is the largest in the world. We are crediting money to the poor directly. It is the biggest structure of direct subsidy transfer.' 'It is very easy to work with Modi. He gives everyone a chance in decision-making. I have become a minister for the very first time, but if we want to raise any issues in the Cabinet, we have full freedom to do so.' The second and final part of Union Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan's exclusive interview with Sheela Bhatt/Rediff.com.

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