Remote voting for migrants will bolster democracy in India

Updated on Jan 02, 2023 08:14 AM IST

Nine state elections are scheduled in 2023, giving plenty of lab space for the RVM prototype to be tested and perfected

It took decades and several phases for EVMs to get accepted, and even now, some defeated candidates find it worthwhile to raise doubts. So RVM has to walk through some fire as well. (HT PHOTO)

Just like That | Notes on New Year festivities

I take this opportunity to wish all readers a very happy New Year. Enjoy yourselves, stay safe, and try not to have a hangover!

The manner in which New Year is brought in also changes with time. (SHUTTERSTOCK)
Updated on Jan 01, 2023 12:15 PM IST

To develop, India must focus on tech, villages

Not just for cosmetic changes in quality of life or lifestyle for the urban affluent, but with people from small towns and villages opting for reverse migration backed by economic benefits and tech-aided new-age opportunities

The potential for a technology-driven revolution is huge: It could change how we live, work, play, and even think about ourselves as a nation. It could alter the socioeconomic fabric of the country by providing opportunities for all citizens and helping bridge the rich-poor divide (Subrata Biswas/ Hindustan Times)
Updated on Dec 31, 2022 08:58 PM IST
ByDeep Kalra

New Year resolution? I don’t have one... yet!

Today, as 2023 gets underway, I’m not sure what New Year’s resolution to make. I like the feeling of saintly virtue when I deliberately deny myself something I like, but I can’t think of what it should be

There was a time when I did without fail. I would make pious commitments which I would rigidly stick to for a week, weakly pursue for one more and happily forget thereafter. The first week felt good. The next left me feeling guilty. But the best was when I cast off the resolution and returned to my bad old ways. (PTI)
Updated on Dec 31, 2022 08:55 PM IST

Celebrating unsung freedom fighters

If we had continued to fight for Gandhi’s India, if we had not forgotten those inspired by his vision, we would now be a very different nation, writes P Sainath in his new book

India is still, in so many ways, a dysfunctional pre-Independence nation with Parliament and assemblies, courts and police bent on following the government’s will regardless of the law (HT PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 31, 2022 08:50 PM IST

G20 presidency: A crucial responsibility

PM Modi is likely to use the G20 platform to showcase the country’s economic muscle and convert the challenge of the G20 presidency into an opportunity to move India to the forefront of world leaders

The G20 summit will be the biggest multilateral event held in India in four decades, the last being the 7th summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in 1983 (ANI)
Updated on Dec 31, 2022 08:48 PM IST

First Principles | 2023 could well be the year of this Musk-eteer

There is a view that while Musk may be a tech visionary, his competence lies in creating “hardware”. But to build and sustain “software” companies is a different game. The consensus view was that he is a bored, rich man. But bored, rich people aren’t stupid to blow up $44 billion to stay in the news

Contrary to what most people expected, Twitter, hasn’t imploded since the time Musk took over. This, despite Musk letting go of 50% of the company’s workforce in an ugly public spat. (AFP)
Updated on Dec 31, 2022 06:17 PM IST

2022 – The Year That Was

Quiet Quitting, Elon Musk, Ashneer Grover, Booster shots Sputnik, CJI Chandrachud, BJP’s back in Gujarat Macron, Merkel, England plays Bazball No money for terror, Bappida says goodbye…

Mahsa Amini, Lionel Messi, Volodymyr Zelensky and Thomas Cup Winners (Clockwise)
Updated on Jan 01, 2023 05:49 AM IST
ByNirmalya Dutta | Edited by Arghya Prasun Roychowdhury

Celebrate civic political action for its own sake

The battleground for substantive democracy in India has largely been outside the electoral arena in the form of citizen-led mobilisations. In 2023, when state polls will dominate discussions, the challenge will be to preserve this space

Vinoba Bhave’s Bhoodan movement, the Chipko movement, and the movement for a gamut of rights (information, work, food), to name a few, have played a crucial role in entrenching liberal norms and prising open spaces for rooting substantive democracy (HT PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 30, 2022 09:11 PM IST

Building a road map to end caste discrimination

We need to build deeper, more intimate connections of solidarity, and instil awareness about anti-casteness, especially among the caste elite who often participate in these crimes

There can be no liberation for women’s rights while caste discrimination thrives. (Shutterstock)
Updated on Jan 02, 2023 08:06 AM IST
ByAnita Bharti

For growth, bolster the manufacturing sector

While the service sector has delivered robust growth rates, it has failed to absorb workers proportionately, leaving agriculture to sustain 46% of India’s workforce with barely a 15% share of GDP

A priority should be to reverse this deindustrialisation trend and bring back this production for local consumption, besides other products (including defence equipment) that can be made in India competitively, given the size of local demand. Substitution of 50% of these imports over the next couple of years could enhance MVA by 30%. (ANI)
Updated on Dec 30, 2022 09:10 PM IST
ByNagesh Kumar

Terms of Trade | The central political economy contradiction in 2023

Whether 2023 brings more strength to the Congress or the BJP will depend on how the former handles its political challenge and the latter its economic challenge

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi during the Bharat Jodo Yatra, New Delhi, December 24, 2022 (PTI)
Updated on Jun 19, 2023 09:47 PM IST

India must shape the climate agenda

This year was marked by climate paradoxes, ranging from fossil fuel phase-out, finance and the role of China. In 2023, India must use its G20 stint to effect change

The developed world is fixated on reducing coal use, not all fossil fuels (Shutterstock)
Updated on Dec 29, 2022 08:34 PM IST
ByVaibhav Chaturvedi

Namami Gange: A new phase, new ambitions

Ganga’s environmental cleansing has aided the people’s spiritual cleansing, which was witnessed when more than 200 million people took a bath during the Kumbh. Likewise, increased sightings of Gangetic dolphins, gharials, otters and other aquatic species serve as a reminder of the river’s improved health

A trash skimmer starts working under the Yamuna Action Plan-III under the Namami Gange Project, Chhat Ghat, Delhi (Hindustan Times)
Updated on Dec 29, 2022 08:46 PM IST
ByGajendra Singh Shekhawat

As we bid goodbye to 2022, a prayer for India

Where Parliament sessions are not consigned to being a mere ritual, where the Opposition doesn’t disrupt, and the government doesn’t dictate, but both sides learn to talk to rather than at each other

I dream of an India where we don’t impose our beliefs, where saffron can be pious and beautiful at the same time (Hindustan Times)
Updated on Dec 29, 2022 08:31 PM IST

What 2023 holds for India’s foreign policy

The Ukraine war threw unexpected geopolitical tests at India in 2022, and Delhi handled it deftly. But challenges from China persist, and if the war drags on, India’s new multi-alignment strategy will face the stress test in the new year

At a time when multilateralism is facing a crisis of credibility, all eyes are on New Delhi’s G20 leadership to provide a road map for some of the key challenges facing the world (AFP)
Updated on Dec 28, 2022 08:01 PM IST

Twist in Nepal poses a new challenge to India

The NC, the largest party in parliament, has been left to lick its wounds. The move will have serious implications both in domestic politics and Nepal’s foreign policy

The coming together of two major Communist parties may push the new government closer to Beijing (AFP)
Updated on Dec 28, 2022 07:58 PM IST

Gene-based tech can bolster food security

After more than three decades of research, GM mustard — developed by Deepak Pental’s team at Delhi University — is the first food crop approved for environmental release. This technology boost to agriculture will benefit farmers

The demand for agricultural productivity is increasing, leading to a renewed demand for new technologies and their deployment. (HT PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 28, 2022 09:05 PM IST
ByRenu Swarup

The scrapping of Maulana Azad National Fellowship is wrong

The sudden scrapping of MANF comes as a shock to the students of minority communities. However, to only comprehend this as a loss to the minority communities would be narrow-sighted. The entire academia stands to lose from this move

The scheme’s objective was to financially assist students of six minority communities: Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and Zoroastrians, as they pursued MPhil and PhD degrees. (ht photo)
Updated on Dec 27, 2022 08:50 PM IST
ByAruma Khan

Uniform Civil Code: Reframe the debate

The starting point of the discussion should not be whether India needs a UCC, but how to ensure every Indian is governed by a gender-just civil code of their choice

At the time the Constitution was being framed, there was a 150-year-long history of communities being governed by their personal laws. Realising that the overhaul of such structures was impossible in one go, the framers of the Constitution left UCC as an aspirational goal (Shutterstock)
Published on Dec 27, 2022 08:23 PM IST

Taliban resistance a setback for Pakistan

The Afghan Taliban is looking for avenues for an image makeover to gain legitimacy, not only internationally but also inside the country. Its Pakistan policy demonstrates it is eager to shake off the image of being stooges and build a new image of peacemakers.

Taliban security personnel stand guard along a road in Kabul on December 21, 2022 (AFP)
Updated on Dec 27, 2022 08:28 PM IST
ByShanthie Mariet D’Souza

India must navigate a world in churn at G20

New Delhi’s refocus on the Global South is consistent with its foreign policy tradition, and it will use the G20 as an entrepreneur of ideas that it hopes will find global circulation and shape the emerging international order.

New ideas such as LiFE and India as a ‘mother of democracy’ will be pushed alongside a partial redefinition of Indian civilisation and a renewed emphasis on reforming global multilateralism (ANI)
Updated on Dec 28, 2022 01:59 PM IST

Climate and US | 2023: Hoping for serious, urgent climate action

With rifts deepening, the world may miss a chance to fight the crisis of climate change equitably. More importantly, what transpired in the negotiations tells us about the challenges in responding to the climate crisis

For now, any forecasts of above-normal temperatures seem too much of a stretch as a scary blizzard has put life out of gear in some parts of the United States (US). People in India’s north are dealing with severely low day temperatures with no central heating in their homes. (SANTOSH KUMAR/HT/PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 27, 2022 08:04 PM IST
ByJayashree Nandi

The Taste With Vir: The lessons I learnt in Kolkata

Indians have got to learn to stop apologising for our food. It’s stupid to Frenchify our presentation, to focus so much on our plating and to lie about our ingredients (why does every menu say lamb even when the meat we eat is goat?) in the hope of appealing to the West.

The Taste With Vir: The lessons I learnt in Kolkata(Pexels)
Updated on Dec 27, 2022 12:20 PM IST
By, Delhi

Citizens must stand up for environment

Grassroots initiatives by community leaders can make a difference in controlling the quarrying of ecologically sensitive areas and safeguarding biodiversity. In an era of rising climate shocks, this approach holds hope

Mining and quarrying are agents of destruction of biodiversity, precious water resources and the quality of people’s lives (HT PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 26, 2022 09:10 PM IST

Understanding Covid-19 migration trends better

A more nuanced methodological and definitional approach in PLFS or subsequent migration surveys could provide more specific answers

The popular narrative after the lockdown created an impression that migration patterns in rural and urban areas have changed drastically. However, PLFS does not support this narrative. (Ajay Aggarwal/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Dec 26, 2022 08:56 PM IST
ByAmitabh Kundu and PC Mohanan

Affirm rights of Muslim women in divorce cases

From an Islamic perspective, a woman’s right to unilateral divorce is rooted in the fact that the Koranic procedure of talaq is not gender-biased

Courts in India, therefore, must make the gender-neutral Koranic procedure of divorce — endorsed by the Supreme Court in the Shamim Ara case (2002) and the Shayara Bano case (2017) — applicable to both Muslim men and women. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Updated on Dec 26, 2022 08:49 PM IST
ByA Faizur Rahman

India will set new data standards in G20 stint

Data is today the world’s most valuable resource and is essential for nuanced and effective policymaking. In its G20 presidency, India will call for modernisation of data systems and advance principles of transparency to better use data for development

As we step into India’s techade, data must be accessible to all (Shutterstock)
Published on Dec 26, 2022 07:33 AM IST

The new year should usher in fresh optimism

Despite shocks, we also received some good news in 2022. India took over as the G20 president, and global financial institutions voiced optimism about the Indian economy’s performance this fiscal year

Several drones fly in formation to create an image of G20 symbol to mark India's presidency of G20, December 19, 2022 (AP)
Updated on Dec 25, 2022 10:00 PM IST

Navigating a world of all-round weaponisation

In the era of all-round weaponisation and breakdown of universal globalisation, statecraft has its task cut out to attend to constructing politically friendlier networks or clubs. In times of intense crisis, the risk of even friends turning selfish remains. But friends will at least not intentionally weaponise resources against each other

The phenomenon of weaponisation of a range of goods and services such as food, fuel, electricity, finance and shipping has stood out during the Russia-Ukraine war. (AP)
Published on Dec 25, 2022 08:37 PM IST
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