Vivek Katju
Articles by Vivek Katju

Eliminating Pakistani intrusions in the Valley

  • The latest manifestation of Pakistan’s policies and actions are the targeted killings. The State must act decisively to protect the people of the region
The targeted killings now being undertaken are of Kashmiri Pandits, including those who are working under the government’s special schemes. (Twitter/@razaacademyho)
The targeted killings now being undertaken are of Kashmiri Pandits, including those who are working under the government’s special schemes. (Twitter/@razaacademyho)
Published on Jun 05, 2022 09:12 PM IST
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Review: Fiji: A Love Story by Ajay Singh

The memoirs of the former Indian ambassador to Fiji highlight, through his own family’s history, the iniquities of the colonial indentured system whose consequences continue to embitter that nation’s politics
A view of Suva, the capital of Fiji. (Shutterstock)
A view of Suva, the capital of Fiji. (Shutterstock)
Updated on May 16, 2022 06:58 PM IST
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Turmoil in Pakistan: What lies ahead

If the Supreme Court allows the no-trust motion, the nation may see an army-supported coalition government. Otherwise, elections will be held in July
Imran Khan has donned the garb of a martyr to Islam and Pakistan’s dignity. Ironically, taking a dig at politicians and generals for bending before outside powers, he praised India’s non-aligned foreign policy on three separate occasions (AFP)
Imran Khan has donned the garb of a martyr to Islam and Pakistan’s dignity. Ironically, taking a dig at politicians and generals for bending before outside powers, he praised India’s non-aligned foreign policy on three separate occasions (AFP)
Updated on Apr 04, 2022 08:38 PM IST
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India must be sharper in dealing with Kabul

  • India’s Afghan policy needs to move into higher gear, accept realities and deal openly with the Taliban
The gap between the Taliban and the major powers on these matters has resulted in the adoption of a two-pronged global approach towards the Taliban. (Shutterstock)
The gap between the Taliban and the major powers on these matters has resulted in the adoption of a two-pronged global approach towards the Taliban. (Shutterstock)
Updated on Feb 15, 2022 07:03 PM IST
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Clarify stand on the Siachen demilitarisation issue

There was a time when the cost of maintaining positions on those icy heights was high in terms of human lives. However, by the mid-1990s, the Indian Army gained enough expertise to reduce these costs. Consequently, the compulsions of the past no longer apply
Ever since India thwarted Pakistan’s intention of gaining control of the Saltoro Ridge and the Siachen glacier in 1984, Pakistan’s objective has been to see the Indian Army come down from its positions. (HTPHoto)
Ever since India thwarted Pakistan’s intention of gaining control of the Saltoro Ridge and the Siachen glacier in 1984, Pakistan’s objective has been to see the Indian Army come down from its positions. (HTPHoto)
Updated on Jan 19, 2022 08:00 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The implications of the two-nation theory

Fifty years since the creation of Bangladesh, Pakistan’s ideology — based solely on Islam — remains rigid. This is why its bilateral engagement with India has failed
Pakistan has never been serious about building a cooperative relationship. In focusing on confrontation, and not walking the path of cooperation, it has paid a heavy economic price, but it has willingly incurred it (REUTERS)
Pakistan has never been serious about building a cooperative relationship. In focusing on confrontation, and not walking the path of cooperation, it has paid a heavy economic price, but it has willingly incurred it (REUTERS)
Updated on Dec 08, 2021 08:23 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Pakistan is caught in a trap of its own making

Khan’s increased tensions with the army have come at a time Pakistan needs civil-military stability and political calm. It is facing immense external and domestic challenges
The army is watching Khan’s discomfiture with some satisfaction. It will, however, not let the situation get completely out of hand (REUTERS)
The army is watching Khan’s discomfiture with some satisfaction. It will, however, not let the situation get completely out of hand (REUTERS)
Updated on Oct 29, 2021 05:33 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Taliban: Two months on, India’s options in Kabul

In the absence of certainty that the major powers will act on Afghanistan, India must follow an independent policy in keeping with its national interest
India took the correct decision in withdrawing the embassy in August but it is now time to send a small team back to Kabul (AFP)
India took the correct decision in withdrawing the embassy in August but it is now time to send a small team back to Kabul (AFP)
Updated on Oct 14, 2021 07:14 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

In Kabul, the centrality of Pakistan

The presence of erstwhile leaders of the Northern Alliance in Islamabad is a stark reflection of current geopolitical realities
A Pakistani paramilitary soldier stands guard as people enter Pakistan through a border crossing point, in Chaman, Pakistan, Tuesday. (AP)
A Pakistani paramilitary soldier stands guard as people enter Pakistan through a border crossing point, in Chaman, Pakistan, Tuesday. (AP)
Updated on Aug 17, 2021 04:39 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

India is losing out in Afghanistan

There is a strategic paralysis in Delhi, even as other strategic challenges are growing. All other powers are talking to the Taliban and securing their interests
In Delhi, on July 28, external affairs minister S Jaishankar and United States secretary of state Antony Blinken strongly endorsed the need for a peaceful and negotiated settlement to end the Afghan conflict. (AP)
In Delhi, on July 28, external affairs minister S Jaishankar and United States secretary of state Antony Blinken strongly endorsed the need for a peaceful and negotiated settlement to end the Afghan conflict. (AP)
Updated on Aug 02, 2021 08:08 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

What India should do in Afghanistan

It should focus on securing interests and openly engage with Taliban; this is possible without damaging current New Delhi-Kabul ties
Cyclists peddle past a mural painted on the wall along a road in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Representational image/AFP)
Cyclists peddle past a mural painted on the wall along a road in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Representational image/AFP)
Updated on Jul 12, 2021 11:45 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The pension amendment rules are flawed

They obliterate the distinction between serving and retired officials, misconstrue the idea of domain knowledge, and are selective in their application
Representational image. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Representational image. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Updated on Jun 04, 2021 05:55 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

On India, the contestation within Pakistan’s army

In considering the India-Pakistan relationship, it is important to bear in mind that the Pakistani army has always maintained a stranglehold on its approach towards India
Representational image.
Representational image.
Published on Apr 22, 2021 06:16 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

In Kabul, a strategic defeat for the US

The elaborate United States (US) draft “Afghanistan peace agreement”, and its impatient letter to Afghan president Ashraf Ghani, once again reveal the strategic defeat of the US in a country that has been “the graveyard of empires”
The US proposal requires Taliban to give up sources of strength and Kabul’s leadership to give up power. India’s inclusion in talks is because of its influence with the Kabul elite (Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)
The US proposal requires Taliban to give up sources of strength and Kabul’s leadership to give up power. India’s inclusion in talks is because of its influence with the Kabul elite (Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Mar 11, 2021 06:42 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The difficult path to Indo-Pak peace

Pakistan’s army is on board with the ceasefire. But unless it revises its position on terror and Kashmir, talks will hit a barrier
PM Modi’s first foray at peace-making with Pakistan had been directed at its civilian leadership. That completely miffed the generals. The situation is different this time, with a military-to-military statement (PIB)
PM Modi’s first foray at peace-making with Pakistan had been directed at its civilian leadership. That completely miffed the generals. The situation is different this time, with a military-to-military statement (PIB)
Updated on Mar 01, 2021 06:21 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Navigating India’s dilemmas in the neighbourhood

India must always be wary of adopting interventionist policies in the neighbourhood. Equally, reflexive anti-Indian sentiment among neighbours will always damage their national interest and the personal political interest of their leaders
It cannot be claimed that India has maintained a policy of strict neutrality over the past seven decades in matters of its neighbours (Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)
It cannot be claimed that India has maintained a policy of strict neutrality over the past seven decades in matters of its neighbours (Sanjeev Verma/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Feb 08, 2021 09:17 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Navigating Trudeau’s unacceptable intrusion and diaspora diplomacy

The Canadian PM’s remarks about the farmers’ protest, a domestic issue in India, are inexcusable. That Trudeau made them to pander to his closely-aligned political, sectional opinion neither diminishes their intrusiveness nor provides a veneer of justification.
India correctly called Trudeau’s comment “unwarranted”, but it would seem from the formulation used by the ministry of external affairs spokesperson that it was diplomatically engaged with Canada on this issue(REUTERS)
India correctly called Trudeau’s comment “unwarranted”, but it would seem from the formulation used by the ministry of external affairs spokesperson that it was diplomatically engaged with Canada on this issue(REUTERS)
Updated on Dec 03, 2020 11:37 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

In Pakistan, a new battle takes shape | Analysis

The Opposition has challenged Imran Khan and the army. Khan is weak; the army is not
The army will close ranks to protect its role in the polity. The India factor will be used to remind the people that it is needed to protect them, especially at this time(AP)
The army will close ranks to protect its role in the polity. The India factor will be used to remind the people that it is needed to protect them, especially at this time(AP)
Updated on Oct 14, 2020 09:06 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Bridging the power gap with China

The old framework of ties has broken down. It is time for India to develop a new approach
The hardening of defences all along the LAC to prevent Chinese adventurism has to be undertaken on a priority basis(AP)
The hardening of defences all along the LAC to prevent Chinese adventurism has to be undertaken on a priority basis(AP)
Updated on Sep 09, 2020 07:37 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

On foreign policy, revive tradition of bipartisanship

In the wake of the China challenge, the government and the Opposition must have a quiet conversation on strategy
A consensus can only emerge through confidential dialogue with all sections(ANI)
A consensus can only emerge through confidential dialogue with all sections(ANI)
Published on Aug 10, 2020 07:58 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Domestic constraints will impinge on the China policy |Opinion

China is India’s greatest strategic threat. Counter it, but retain the focus on Covid-19, economy, social cohesion
India’s diplomatic energies should not get diffused at a time when the primary area of concern must be domestic(AP)
India’s diplomatic energies should not get diffused at a time when the primary area of concern must be domestic(AP)
Updated on Jun 26, 2020 07:55 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

India will have to contest charges of religious bias

Pakistan is spreading propaganda. But counter it through effective action and a return to constitutionalism
While international liberal opinion was further alienated because of religion becoming a factor in granting nationality, despite Pakistan’s best efforts, the Gulf countries did not become hostile(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
While international liberal opinion was further alienated because of religion becoming a factor in granting nationality, despite Pakistan’s best efforts, the Gulf countries did not become hostile(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
Published on May 11, 2020 05:53 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The mystery behind India’s stance on HCQ

On March 25, India banned export of HCQ — with exceptions. On April 4, it banned it - without exceptions. On April 7, it lifted it. What changed?
Currently, HCQ is allowed to be used in India as a prophylactic for frontline health workers in the fight against COVID-19 and household contacts of laboratory confirmed cases.(Sakib Ali /Hindustan Times)
Currently, HCQ is allowed to be used in India as a prophylactic for frontline health workers in the fight against COVID-19 and household contacts of laboratory confirmed cases.(Sakib Ali /Hindustan Times)
Updated on Apr 09, 2020 11:53 AM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Include the Opposition in executive decision-making | Opinion

Covid-19 is the greatest challenge India has faced since Independence. The political class must unite to face it
Social harmony remains fragile. A united political class will help win trust(Santosh Kumar/Hindustan Times)
Social harmony remains fragile. A united political class will help win trust(Santosh Kumar/Hindustan Times)
Published on Mar 25, 2020 07:18 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The defensive turn in India’s foreign policy, writes Vivek Katju

Diplomats are busy clarifying domestic decisions. This expends capital and diverts attention from India’s goals
India’s foreign minister S Jaishankar, Brussels, February 17, 2020(AP)
India’s foreign minister S Jaishankar, Brussels, February 17, 2020(AP)
Published on Mar 08, 2020 06:21 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

After Pulwama, India effected a doctrinal shift

With the emphasis on pre-emptive action, India has signalled that it will no longer accept loss of lives
The site of the Pulwama attack, February 14, 2019. Prior to the surgical strikes, India followed a policy of hardening defences to prevent terrorist attacks and diplomatic responses whenever they did take place and led to large loss of life(PTI)
The site of the Pulwama attack, February 14, 2019. Prior to the surgical strikes, India followed a policy of hardening defences to prevent terrorist attacks and diplomatic responses whenever they did take place and led to large loss of life(PTI)
Published on Feb 13, 2020 07:37 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Time to address Muslim anxieties | Opinion

The Indian polity must aim to make them full and active participants in all spheres of national life
JanIndia’s strategic interests require social peace. Neither aggression nor withdrawal will help(Santosh Kumar /HT)
JanIndia’s strategic interests require social peace. Neither aggression nor withdrawal will help(Santosh Kumar /HT)
Updated on Jan 07, 2020 09:12 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The value of diplomatic engagement

India must continue to engage with all, including critics, while pushing its own narrative
The test of diplomacy is in opening closed minds. India must engage with leaders of both parties in the US(AFP)
The test of diplomacy is in opening closed minds. India must engage with leaders of both parties in the US(AFP)
Published on Dec 24, 2019 07:26 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

The riddle of paragraph 652 in the Ayodhya order

It pins 1856 as the threshold to examine legal claims. But its final verdict goes against precisely this basis
The Supreme Court may have decided to find a pragmatic way for social harmony but, as an Indian, I ask myself if that is the function of the court or of other State institutions? Hence, I am conflicted(Sunil Saxena/HT)
The Supreme Court may have decided to find a pragmatic way for social harmony but, as an Indian, I ask myself if that is the function of the court or of other State institutions? Hence, I am conflicted(Sunil Saxena/HT)
Published on Nov 20, 2019 07:17 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju

Don’t impair the integrity of the UPSC exam system

The panel must address concerns on quality of questions, nature of the exam, and what it is seeking in a candidate
The Union Public Service Commission also needs to evolve systems to conduct appraisals of question papers perhaps as post-mortem exercises to examine if the examinations are bringing out the qualities needed in candidates it recommends for selection(HINDUSTAN TIMES PHOTO)
The Union Public Service Commission also needs to evolve systems to conduct appraisals of question papers perhaps as post-mortem exercises to examine if the examinations are bringing out the qualities needed in candidates it recommends for selection(HINDUSTAN TIMES PHOTO)
Updated on Oct 31, 2019 06:20 PM IST
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ByVivek Katju
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Monday, July 04, 2022