Opinion

Judicial overreach

By extending the curtailment of the right to vote of a person in prison or lawful police custody to the right of the person to stand in an election, the Supreme Court has, in effect, left the door open for the practice of vendetta politics by ruling parties.


Making bankers pay for failed gambles

The financial sector in the West imploded in 2007, causing a downturn in the world economy from which it is yet to recover. How to prevent recurrent banking crises has been uppermost in the minds of policymakers ever since.


The promise of Africa

Rwanda, best known for the genocidal murder of a million people less than two decades ago, is now peaceful and flourishing, with a 7.8 per cent projected GDP growth rate for 2013 and an announced goal of eliminating dependence on foreign aid.


When expedience trumps expertise

Uttarakhand reiterates that our rulers have contemptuous disregard for the advice of the best scientists and would rather listen to contractors and builders to whom they are beholden for funds.


A blow for dignity and decency

Bolivia, Nicaragua and Venezuela, who have opened their arms to him, were no doubt spurred by the shocking mistreatment of Bolivian President Evo Morales in Europe last week.


Alpine amnesia and the Attorney General

While he offers legal advice to the government in the Coalgate case, he must not forget that his primary duty is to protect public interest.


A path to environmental burnout

The waste-to-energy industry is trying to relocate itself in India and China taking advantage of lax regulations and low awareness of the hazards of incineration.


Protect, don’t snoop

The UPA has sought to create national nodal agencies to “coordinate all matters relating to cyber security,” a task that includes spelling out policy guidelines, managing crises, and performing periodic security audits.


Wanted, an Indian Frankfurter - Judges Appointment

The judiciary and the executive are ignoring the constitutional mandate to appoint distinguished jurists to the Supreme Court.


Learning to live in a new Asia

Instead of indulging in aggressive posturing, leaders of the region must recognise shifting dynamics and strengthen the East Asian Summit as the mechanism to resolve differences.


Growing risks to stability

In the latest edition of its half-yearly Financial Stability Report (FSR), the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has pointed out that global risks and domestic macroeconomic risks continue to be the two most important factors affecting the stability of the Indian financial system.


Letting freebies be

At stake is whether courts can sit in judgment over the policies and programmes of a political party, however ill-advised or impractical these might be.


On disability, missing the bigger picture

There is reason to be optimistic about the U.N. report on disability rights, but there is also disappointment at its failure to make the poverty connection.


Fear unfounded - Three parent baby

With Britain recently deciding to proceed with draft regulations on the mitochondria replacement technique for preventing women from transmitting mitochondrial disorders to their children, the method joins the list of revolutionary fertility and embryology tools that have come under opposition and criticism.


The costly tyranny of secrecy

The Emergency and the post-Emergency era witnessed attempts by the executive to muzzle the judiciary. It was to check this erosion of independence of the judiciary that the ‘Collegium’ system was evolved.


Egypt’s political abyss

The army says fresh elections will be held and that it will then resume its normal duties, and there was huge public cheering when a council comprising General al-Sisi, Constitution Party leader Mohamed ElBaradei, Al Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed el-Tayeb, and Coptic Pope Tawadros II announced President Morsy’s ouster.


Affirming the right to read

The most notable common provision in the new treaty and India’s copyright law is the waiver of prior approval from authors and publishers for the reproduction and distribution of works into any alternative format, precluding commercial gain.


Restoring nature’s shock absorbers

With loss and tragedy at its heart, the debate on appropriate planning in seismically and hydrologically sensitive areas has been rekindled, with the need to relook the very idea of a zone that is “ecologically sensitive.”


Head in sand on Snowden

Three conclusions stem from the exposé by Der Spiegel of documents leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden on the extent of American spying on foreign governments.


The emerging debt trap

India’s external debt was a little just over $100 billion in 2004; by March 2013, this had grown to $390 billion. More worryingly, the short term debt payable within a year, an indicator of immediate vulnerability, has ballooned to $172 billion in 2013, from $54 billion in 2008.