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Patrick French
Articles by Patrick French

Queen Elizabeth II will be a tough act to follow

While King Charles III will seek to emulate her sense of consistency and duty, this will be difficult to sustain in a divided UK and a changing world

Queen Elizabeth II bridged differences that often looked unbridgeable, and King Charles III will be intensely aware of the scale of the challenge he and his descendants face in maintaining this achievement. (Instagram/@theroyalfamily)
Updated on Sep 11, 2022 08:40 PM IST

Essential politician: The importance of being Jaitley

Writer Patrick French profiled Arun Jaitley for Hindustan Times in 2015. Here’s an abridged version.

Former Union finance minister Arun Jaitley died at Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences on Saturday.(REUTERS)
Updated on Aug 25, 2019 07:34 AM IST
ByPatrick French

I’m happy every day, want to be reborn in India: Amit Shah

BJP chief Amit Shah wants to be reborn in India and his favourite food is banana though he cannot eat the fruit because of diabetes.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) and Amit Shah, the president of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), wave to their supporters during a campaign rally in New Delhi.(REUTERS)
Updated on Jul 17, 2016 12:56 PM IST
ByPatrick French

The ‘Shah’ of BJP’s game plan who wants to alter India’s political culture

Regarded as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s most trusted lieutenant, the powerful party president says he wants to alter the political culture of the entire country

BJP president Amit Shah at his residence in New Delhi on Thursday. The senior politician draws inspiration from Chanakya and Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, whose portraits can be seen on the wall behind him.(Reuben Singh/HT Photo)
Updated on Jul 17, 2016 12:58 PM IST
ByPatrick French

Essential politician: The importance of being Arun Jaitley

Union minister Arun Jaitley’s attachment to the BJP has much to do with his family’s Partition experiences, and his own during the Emergency.

File photo taken on August 6, 1974 of Arun Jaitley (extreme left) along with other ABVP candidates for DUSU elections.(HT Photo)
Updated on May 29, 2016 11:08 AM IST
ByPatrick French

In the times of Nitish Kumar: Is this Bihar’s second coming?

Is this Bihar’s second coming? Its chief minister, a long-time player of power politics, rides on the promise of changing the state’s image

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar at the Hindustan Times office in New Delhi.(Raj K Raj / Hindustan Times)
Updated on Apr 17, 2016 04:40 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French

Arvind Kejriwal: Delhi’s chief micromanager, thoughtful tactician

The chief minister of Delhi is a public firebrand and a thoughtful tactician. From yoga to mufflers to anti-establishmentarianism, the symbolism of Arvind Kejriwal has wide middle-class appeal

Arvind Kejriwal at his residence at Civil Lines, Delhi(Raj K Raj / HT Photo)
Updated on Apr 03, 2016 03:17 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French

Hanging up sacred thread: Yechury on combining class and caste struggle

Sitaram Yechury, who prefers politics to politicking, believes in integrating the traditional Marxist analysis of the class struggle with the India-specific struggle against caste.

Sitaram Yechury, who prefers politics to politicking, believes in integrating the traditional Marxist analysis of the class struggle with the India-specific struggle against caste.(Raj K Raj/HT Photo)
Updated on Feb 28, 2016 12:28 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French

The accumulation of Pawar: Sharad Pawar and his political journey

Sharad Pawar’s ability to build relationships across party lines has made him one of India’s toughest politicians. It also ensured that every powerful tycoon and political figure attended his seventy-fifth birthday celebrations, which were, in effect, the launch of his campaign for the presidency

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar during the winter session of Parliament in New Delhi.(Vipin Kumar/HT Photo)
Updated on Dec 14, 2015 12:55 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French, New Delhi

If not a politician, I’d be a lawyer, says AIMIM chief Owaisi

A firebrand politician, a fearless orator and a never-say-die debtor. All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi has several aces up in his sleeve. The leader, who has seen a meteoric rise in the Indian politics in the past

All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen president Asaduddin Owaisi (PTI File Photo)
Published on Oct 11, 2015 05:47 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French

Opportunist or rockstar? Owaisi recasting Muslim politics in India

Asaduddin Owaisi has recast Muslim politics in India. While critics call him an opportunist, fans think he’s a ‘rockstar’. In the first of a series of monthly profiles, author Patrick French looks at the man and his politics.

Owaisi does not play by the rules, or follow the familiar style of the sarkari Muslim leader.(Gurinder Osan/HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 13, 2015 09:02 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French, New Delhi

Why does it feel as if nothing is going right in the country?

There may be more conversations per capita in India than anywhere else. Recently, though, debate seems to transform into shrillness and aggression. Or are we mistaking the symptoms for the problem? Patrick French writes.

Updated on Sep 15, 2013 03:23 AM IST
ByPatrick French

Writings on India

Do we apply different standards to foreigners to those we expect for ourselves? Once victims of Imperialism, are Indians now becoming culturally exclusivist? And what is the future of Indian literature and creativity in an increasingly globalised world, asks Patrick French. Discovery of India: writing down the ages

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Updated on Apr 22, 2012 01:27 AM IST
None | ByPatrick French

Trick and threat

A few months after the 9/11 attacks, a French convert to Islam named Willie Brigitte attended a terrorist training camp in the mountains of Pakistan.

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Updated on Aug 19, 2011 11:03 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French

What if 2011 India was a British dominion?

A God-save-the-joke look at a nation of 1.2 billion loyal subjects to the British queen.

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Updated on Nov 15, 2011 02:28 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French, New Delhi

So you think you know everything about Pakistan?

Even before the country’s creation in 1947, some were predicting the collapse and breakup of Pakistan. The Indian Muslim leader Maulana Azad thought the partition of the subcontinent would be reversed in a matter of months.

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Updated on May 20, 2011 11:43 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French


What is ‘Indian science’ when it is at home — or abroad? The term has a slightly dubious ring, conjuring up an image of old-fashioned nationalists who believe many modern scientific discoveries were prophesied in Hindu scriptures.

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Updated on Apr 08, 2011 11:16 PM IST
None | ByPatrick French

Before you get all nostalgic

It is usually easier to be pessimistic. The national mood at the moment in India is caught in the aftermath of assorted scams and corruption scandals, combined with a sense that the Manmohan Singh-led government, after nearly seven years in office, is growing stale.

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Updated on Jan 22, 2011 11:49 PM IST
Hindustan Times | ByPatrick French
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