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Barkha Dutt

Barkha Dutt is consulting editor, NDTV, and founding member, Ideas Collective. She tweets as @BDUTT.

Articles by Barkha Dutt

States hold the key to unlocking Mandate 2024

The BJP banks on Brand Modi whereas Opposition hopes to gain from confusion among BJP voters restive about new alliances, import of leaders

Solapur: Supporters of BJP candidates from Solapur constituency Ram Satpute and Madha constituency Ranjeetsingh H. Naik Nimbalkar during their campaign rally before they file nomination for Lok Sabha elections, in Solapur, Maharashtra, Tuesday, April 16, 2024. (PTI Photo)(PTI04_16_2024_000123A)(PTI)
Published on May 10, 2024 11:34 PM IST

What the South thinks — lessons from a road trip

Narendra Modi is, by miles, the dominant political persona of this election. But faith-centric issues are not the motivation for BJP supporters in South India

People queue up to vote during the second round of voting in the six-week long national election outside a polling booth in Bengaluru, India, Friday, April 26, 2024. (AP Photo)(AP)
Published on Apr 26, 2024 10:00 PM IST

A Vadra twist in Congress’s Amethi story

Could Robert Vadra be pitching for a nomination in the party’s prestige seat with the sanction of the Congress leadership?

Robert Vadra. (ANI)
Published on Apr 12, 2024 10:00 PM IST

AAP story: Leader in prison, party on the backfoot

Whether the AAP can stay intact and fight with its senior leadership in prison is the existential question before the party

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal leaves Rouse Avenue Court after appearing in a liquor case, in New Delhi, India, on Thursday, March 28, 2024. (Photo by Vipin Kumar/ Hindustan Times)
Published on Mar 29, 2024 11:38 PM IST

Conflict of interest is built into the idea of electoral bonds

It is a cause of worry that some of the firms raided by central agencies are among funders of India’s political parties

New Delhi: A replica of Electronic Voting Machine (EVM) at the Election Commission of India (ECI) head office, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024. (PTI Photo/Kamal Kishore)(PTI02_28_2024_000219A)(PTI)
Published on Mar 15, 2024 09:55 PM IST

Tips for Rahul Gandhi from the world of media

Rather than turn bitter about the state of the world, stay agile and be adaptive to change to remain in the game. The alternative is retirement

Targeting the media, as Rahul Gandhi has begun to consistently do in his speeches, won’t change the Congress party’s political fortunes much (ANI FILE PHOTO)
Published on Mar 01, 2024 10:00 PM IST

Constitutional idealism gets a boost from SC

The verdict on electoral bonds suggests that the healthy and necessary tensions between the executive, judiciary and legislature are alive and well

Electoral bonds are unconstitutional, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday. (AP)
Published on Feb 16, 2024 10:00 PM IST

Congress’s position on mandir ceremony points to confusion

Hindutva will be a key factor in the general elections and the Opposition has itself to blame

Ayodhya, Jan 19 (ANI): A glimpse of the beautification work at the Ram Temple ahead of the 'Pran Pratishtha' ceremony, in Ayodhya on Friday. (ANI Photo)(Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshet)
Published on Jan 20, 2024 03:15 AM IST

Like Labour in the ’90s, Congress needs a third way

Politics in India has changed. The Opposition needs a new template that is more than anti-Modism to stay relevant

Leaders of the INDIA bloc at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on Friday. (Vipin Kumart/HT Photo)
Published on Jan 05, 2024 10:15 PM IST

In Sakshi Malik’s tears, a message for Indian women

Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh’s continuing hold over Indian wrestling raises questions

Wrestler Sakshi Malik hangs up boots during a press conference as she announces her retirement from the sport, protesting against Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh loyalist Sanjay Singh winning the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) election for its presidential post, in New Delhi, Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023.(PTI)
Published on Dec 22, 2023 10:19 PM IST

Congress’s anger against voters and EVMs is pointless

On leadership, narrative and organisation, the party has yet to find an effective counter to Moditiva. It is fighting – and losing – on Modi’s terms

Congress leaders Rahul gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Mallikarjun Kharge (ANI)
Updated on Dec 08, 2023 10:30 PM IST

The curious case of Pannun and the US response

There’s something about Pannun’s story that leaves more questions than answers. And India is entitled to express anger over those who threaten its people

Gurpatwant Singh Pannun, co-founder and legal adviser of the banned US-based Khalistani organisation Sikhs for Justice,
Published on Nov 24, 2023 10:54 PM IST

What I saw from the frontline of Israel-Hamas war

The Indian view, an unequivocal calling out of terrorism but a firm underscoring of the rights of the Palestinian people, is a nuanced response

Palestinians inspect the damage of destroyed buildings following Israeli airstrikes on Gaza City. (AP Photo)
Published on Oct 27, 2023 10:40 PM IST

Status quo in Manipur is no more an option

Civilians are angry and security personnel are exhausted. As teenagers are pulled into the conflict, a political solution has to emerge in the state

Manipur has been in the throes of clashes since May 3, killing at least 168 people. (REUTERS)
Published on Sep 30, 2023 12:43 AM IST

Media as the fall guy is not a new story

Boycott of select journalists, as announced by INDIA, has always existed. Just that it may never have been declared officially via a press statement

Has INDIA, the opposition alliance, made a mistake by releasing the names of 14 television anchors that it will no longer fraternise with? (PTI)
Published on Sep 15, 2023 10:05 PM IST

Is India headed for simultaneous polls?

The mystery special session of Parliament sparks speculation about the possibility of simultaneous elections. But we need three more weeks to conclusively know

INDIA bloc leaders during joint press brief in Mumbai on Friday.(HT Photo)
Published on Sep 01, 2023 11:11 PM IST

Imran Khan is in jail. Why does no one seem to care?

Despite being a popular leader, Imran Khan now appears to retain very little sympathy. The former PM has been devoured by all that he stood and advocated for

FILE PHOTO: Former Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, gestures as he speaks with Reuters during an interview, in Lahore, Pakistan March 17, 2023. REUTERS/Akhtar Soomro/File Photo(REUTERS)
Published on Aug 18, 2023 10:02 PM IST

Inside Manipur’s battle zones, the State is missing

Either the Biren Singh government and the State apparatus is entirely absent or it is without the slightest modicum of compassion.

Paramilitary personnel stand guard as people stage a protest against the mass burial of Kuki-Zomi people killed in Manipur's ethnic violence, in Imphal on Thursday. (ANI Photo)
Published on Aug 04, 2023 09:50 PM IST

Manipur horror shows why Biren Singh must go

A video has sparked outrage across India, highlighting why Biren Singh must be removed and the need for better protection of women in cases of sexual assault.

Biren Singh should resign or be removed. Not because of the horror of this incident alone, but because of his spectacular failure over the last two months. (ANI)
Updated on Jul 22, 2023 06:36 AM IST

A sense of deja vu pervades the Maha muddle

Sharad Pawar appeared to have been felled by his own games; but by inducting a party it has constantly targeted for graft, is BJP risking its own prospects?

Sharad Pawar may have been consumed by his own games.( (File Photo))
Published on Jul 07, 2023 09:55 PM IST

The democracy debate has lessons for all sides

Tracking Prime Minister Modi’s big visit to the US can leave with you the sense of two parallel conversations taking place in two different universes.

PM Modi raised a toast to good health, prosperity and the pursuit of happiness, liberty, and equality and to the ever-lasting bonds of friendship between India and the United States. (PTI)
Published on Jun 23, 2023 09:57 PM IST

Outcome of the wrestlers’ case is a signal to women

How the police handle this case will be a signal to all of India’s women, young and old, and especially to those girls who are just starting out

Wrestlers have accused Wrestling Federation of India chief Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh of sexual harassment. (ANI)(ANI)
Published on Jun 10, 2023 01:37 AM IST

As new House opens, spare a moment for wrestlers’ stir

The wrestlers plan to organise a women’s mahapanchayat on the same day the new Parliament is officially declared open. This might be a mistake.

Protesting wrestlers Sangeeta Phogat, Sakshi Malik ,Vinesh Phogat and Bajrang Punia pay a visit at Rajghat , New Delhi, May 18, 2023 (Vipin Kumar/Hindustan Times)
Updated on May 26, 2023 08:20 PM IST

Pakistan crisis is a case of deja vu than real change

Despite Imran Khan’s rebellion, there is no proof yet that anything will change substantively. Expect the same script with new actors

Several viral videos suggest that citizens could not have attacked venerable military fortresses without sections of the military helping or looking the other way. Many argue that all of this is the deft handiwork of the new army chief to contain and manage Khan’s rising popularity (AFP)
Updated on May 12, 2023 08:37 PM IST

Silence over the wrestlers’ stir is a sheer travesty

An inquiry panel cannot fairly investigate allegations against a powerful politician if he still exerts control and influence

Wrestlers Vinesh Phogat with Sakshi Malik and Bajrang Punia during a protest dharna against the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI), Jantar Mantar, New Delhi , January 20, 2023 (Hindustan Times)
Updated on Apr 28, 2023 09:15 PM IST

Why we should all care about the textbook debate

Interpretations of history are often more normative than empirical. But changes made in NCERT textbooks without any public discussion are worrying

A parliamentary debate where citizens have a right to see who stands where on how history should be taught, could have preceded these edits in the NCERT textbooks (Hindustan Times)
Updated on Apr 14, 2023 07:05 PM IST

Don’t let the Amritpal saga damage the future of Punjab

The radical preacher’s sudden appearance, alleged ties to Pakistan, dramatic escape, and video leaks raise unanswered questions.

Unlike Bhindranwale, Amritpal cannot command any significant section of the street. There were only a handful of people who came out to protest in his support. (HT File Photo)
Published on Mar 31, 2023 09:44 PM IST

Will Rahul’s remarks undo hard work of Bharat Jodo?

Had Rahul Gandhi chosen to say, for instance, “My views are on record on multiple platforms in India. …. I don’t wish to be drawn into that conversation here,” chances are the headlines would have been different

While there is no evident upside for Gandhi in talking about politics and the state of the nation abroad, there is a downside (Congress Twitter)
Updated on Mar 17, 2023 07:45 PM IST

SC verdict on ECI marks an inflection point

The historic judgment comes amid a tussle between the Centre and the top court. Don’t be surprised if the action shifts to Parliament and decisions on NJAC and ECI are reopened. The battle lines have been drawn

Both the institutions at the centre of the current storm — the Election Commission of India and the judiciary — have been, unfortunately, politicised (Hindustan Times)
Updated on Mar 03, 2023 08:41 PM IST

BBC row shows Indian politics has come a full circle

Indira Gandhi banned BBC twice, claiming that vested foreign interests were trying to diminish the nation. Today, this theory is a weapon in the BJP’s political arsenal

The tax action against BBC and the BJP’s response may seem to some journalists like a sledgehammer response; but to those taking decisions in the party, it may well be consciously calculated politics (Shutterstock)
Updated on Feb 17, 2023 07:00 PM IST
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