MonitorsPublished on Oct 26, 2020
South Asia Weekly Report | Volume XIII-43

Pakistan: Khan-Bajwa marriage on the rocks?

Ayjaz Wani

Over the past four months, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan is facing one of his difficult political challenges as major opposition parties have come together under the Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) alliance to kick-start a nation-wide agitation against his rule. Demanding Imran’s resignation, the PDM has announced a three-phased action plan, which includes country-wide protests, public meetings and rallies, culminating in a “decisive long march” in January 2021 in Islamabad.

In their joint online address to the PDM, former President Asif Ali Zardari and deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced the alliance’s 26-point declaration of demands. Nawaz Shareef used the PDM’s first-ever power-show in Gujranwala to settle scores with the strong army establishment of the country. Delivering his massage through a video-link from London, Shareef accused the army of bringing down his government and clandestinely paving the way for Imran Khan becoming the Prime Minister.

Coming after the warnings of the nation’s military and intelligence chiefs to  the opposition leaders not to drag democratic institutions into petty political issues and cautioning them against creating chaos and civil disturbance, Sharif’s accusation is a clear indication of the opposition unity. It also is a clear message to Pakistan’s all-powerful military establishment that their warnings no longer have any impact on the antagonistic mood of the combined opposition.

Dual policy

From the inception of independent Pakistan, civilian governments have continued to largely remain under the influence of the military. Such has been their interference that the military has also come to be recognised as Pakistan’s centre of power by global powers, including the US and China. As Imran Khan became Prime Minister with the help of army establishment, through reported rigged elections, its grip over the civilian government, especially under the current Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa has increased manifold.

The direct control gained by the military on the civilian government has given an impression that the affairs of the state are managed by the army even without declaration of martial law or army rule. From the installation of Imran’ Tehreek-e-Insaf  (PTI) party’s rule, key civilian sectors, including civil aviation, public health, and power regulator, are headed by serving or retired military officials.

The PTI government also appointed former army official Lt.-Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa to head the Prime Minister’s media management team to control the national media and their narrative. Furthermore, Imran Khan also gave a three-year extension to Gen Bajwa despite concerns raised by the judiciary.

The army top-brass used their increased influence in the civilian government as an opportunity to unleash a corruption spree. According to an August 2020 report, Lt-Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa and his family have allegedly amassed tonnes of undisclosed wealth during his tenure. He used his office to set up offshore assets with his wife and brother.

The report further alleges that some of the power projects were awarded without following due tendering process at 237 percent cost than other similar projects in neighbouring countries like India. Similar wrongdoings were also highlighted about two coal-based power plants.

Amidst the furore from the opposition parties in the light of this report, Saleem Bajwa stepped down as the special assistant to the Prime Minister on information and broadcasting, but continues to remain chairman of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) Authority – an institution that is being used by military establishment as a conduit of further corruption.

Such is the control of the military over the current civilian dispensation that Imran Khan maintained stoic silence on the exposé and even refused to accept Saleem Bajwa’s resignation till 12 October 2020. The PTI government on the other hand used the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) to increase the persecution of opposition leaders on the pretext of accountability and corruption.

The anti-corruption drive remained the centrepiece of the PTI government, which used the NAB to frame charges against many political leaders, including the Sharifs, former President Asif Ali Zardari, the Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) group led by Fazl-ur-Rehman, and several members of each of their families. The NAB has recently framed charges against Shahbaz Sharif, the brother of Nawaz Sharif, in a money laundering case of whopping $41.9 million.

The blatant use of the NAB by the PTI government galvanised the opposition to create an alliance. Under the PDM, the opposition has joined hands to expose the unholy marriage of convenience between Imran Khan and the army establishment. The PDM has even demanded the sacking of Saleem Bajwa and a transparent investigation in the way it was done in the case of the opposition politicians.

Challenging times ahead

After back-to-back mass rallies in Gujranwala and Karachi by the 11-party strong opposition under the banner of PDM, Imran Khan and military establishment have started to feel the heat. The PDM is directly attacking the military establishment by dismissing the PTI government as its puppet, rubber stamp. Nawaz Sharif even went one step further and said via the video link, “our struggle is not against Imran Khan. Today, our struggle is against those who installed Imran Khan and who manipulated elections to bring an inefficient man like him into power and thus destroyed the country.” This direct criticism of the military establishment has made things worse for both Bajwa and Imran Khan at the time when the country is reeling under multiple socio-economic shocks triggered by inflation, increase in terrorist incidents, non-implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) on terrorism and sectarian divide.

The aggression shown by PM Khan and his PTI government to break the opposition with a series of arrests and tougher measures are only worsening the current situation. After the second show of strength at Karachi by the PDM, the PTI government tried to intimidate the opposition by arresting retired Captain Mohammad Safdar, the husband of PML-N vice-president Maryam Nawaz, from hotel on charges of “violating the sanctity of the Quaid's mausoleum”.

As the province of Sindh is ruled by one of the main opposition parties, the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), the arrest was done so that the entire blame could be shifted to the Sindh government and police with an aim to divide the opposition. According to reports, when police refused to make the arrest, the Rangers kidnapped the IGP, who was forcibly “taken to the sector commander's office and asked to sign on the arrest orders”.

Following the mounting pressure from opposition parties, COAS Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa ordered an enquiry into the arrest of Mohammad Safdar and even talked to the chief of the PPP. The army establishment is trying to balance its acts as generals want to avoid controversy. The next few months are critical as to how Imran Khan manages the army bosses and creates rifts within the PDM to save his government.

Nepal: Understanding the India migration in Covid times

Sohini Nayak

The relationship between Nepal and India has stood the test of circumstances, time and again, through the existence of an open border. With the bilateral treaty of 1950 between the two countries, along with unplugged access to travel and work across brink, mass migration had come to be established as a core entity of negotiation and balance, without any formal record.

In this regard, a massive exodus of rural Nepalis, entangled in poverty, unemployment and more recently the civil war, migrating to India, had always been seen as a major trend. However, the recent Covid-19 situation prevailing all over the world has somewhat ‘reversed’ this scenario with migrant-returnees – placing them at the frontline of the crisis, unemployed, unpaid and vulnerable.

As a result of the geographical proximity and the economic opportunities, India is often one of the first choices for migration from Nepal. After the lockdown began in March, several hundreds of Nepalis walked miles to leave their host country and access the border points, which again were not open for numerous days.

Additionally, even after returning back home, around 98.7 per cent of the people found themselves at a loss of their basic household livelihood with nothing to bank on as a cushion.  Approximately, 12 per cent of the returnees did not even have adequate food stock with the main source of income being crop production, livestock rearing and purchasing of the basic needs from the local market.

Historical framework

The small Himalayan landlocked nation has generally been depicted as one of the dependent countries of South Asia, trying to create its own niche in the process of South Asian nation building, despite its tremendous strategic significance as a ‘buffer state’. Nonetheless, it must be noted here that it is also one of the least developed countries in the world that has been able to move a step higher in the ladder with a ‘lower-middle income’ status in the recent past.

One of the primary reasons behind this upgrade has been the foreign currency that is flowing into the country through the thousands of migrant workers placed all over the world, especially the Gulf and the South East Asian countries. With an average of 66 per cent of the population living on subsistence agriculture in the rural areas, grappling with caste and gender disparities, labour migration has increased tremendously in the last few decades.

One of the first instances of Nepal supplying labour to India dates back to the recruitment of the ‘Gorkha’ regiment of the British Army after the Anglo-Nepal War of 1814-15. Indian States like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal and Assam remain the major hubs of such migration, for both the skilled as well the unskilled laborers, who try to move out of resource deficiency in their own country.

In such a scenario, the contemporary picture presents difficulty in working out the actual number of Nepalis present in India. Several important factors like cross-border marriages, Indians historically rooted in Nepal and Nepalis who have been successful in gaining domiciled status in India, still cannot bring about the proper record for that matter, beyond 1 to 3 million Nepalese who are estimated to work in different parts of India.

Within this backdrop, the ever so augmenting working-age population of Nepal is supposedly to further increase by 20 million within 2025, which refers to an additional increment of work force by that period. In this regard, if there are no alternative livelihood in this pandemic with newer employment opportunities, given the sluggish economic growth pattern of the country, international labour migration will undoubtedly aggrandize.

Loopholes in migration route

The Nepal-India migration corridor is still not a part of the present foreign employment policies and has been susceptible to the lack of data, inadequacy of social security coverage and also vulnerability of workers in the informal sector. There are both seasonal and long-term migrants to India-primarily the labor force, who are also consequently faced with problems like the transfer of remittances.

Facilitated by unregulated migration, there are several security threats that emanate from this zone and require proper collaboration and managerial skills on part of both the governments to combat such issues. One of the primary aspects includes the non-traditional security threats that have been lately making its presence felt in a more rigorous manner. Ranging from terrorism to human trafficking, drug trafficking and also the spread of infectious diseases like the COVID 19, the open border is also a bane that is beyond the generation of economy and employment.

First, even though it is mandatory for the Nepali migrants to depart only from the Nepal airport, requiring all the necessary documents of identity and migration along with employment in any foreign land, regular cases of using India as a transit point to head into a third country are being reported. This simultaneously questions the significance and relevance of the open border.

In many situations, there are private recruitment agencies responsible for such issues which facilitate them from getting away from the legally bound system of migration and taking the responsibility of the people going at work or providing proper insurance facilities. In this recourse, fake passports and documents along with the widespread circulation of unaccounted foreign currency is also making its presence felt in the system, requiring proper scrutiny, thereby encouraging terrorist activities and other antisocial actions.

Secondly, there is rampant human trafficking that takes place across the border, primarily taking into account young women, girls and children who are sent to India in thousands every year. Many of them either end up in Indian brothels or are seen working as maids in the local neighbourhood, primarily against their wishes. The Human Trafficking and Transportation (Control) Act of 2007 and the Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act 1956 of India have been comprehensively ineffective in addressing such cases of concern.

Thirdly, the Indo-Nepal border has been diagnosed with the prevalence of widespread cross-border diseases like HIV/AIDS and malaria, caused by the inflow and outflow of the migration population. Mainly caused by the truckers and the traders, the returnee migrants from India have a prevalence rate of AIDS with 2.2 per cent.

Though surveyed by the World Health Organization and the national medical departments of both the countries, legal measures are still pending to work upon. Despite the prevalence of such issues, both the governments have failed to put a sincere check on the spread of diseases as a result of which the COVID-19 is moving beyond any sort of check. This situation runs the risk of explosion primarily during the festivities like Dassain and Navratri when a major chunk of the population try to return back home for the festivities, which have been of course curtailed this year.

Better connectivity

The situation thus prevailing has to be improved in order to gain better connectivity opportunities between the two countries, who are trying to re-establish and re-negotiate their relationship. Culturally and geographically contiguous, there can be several ways of addressing such loopholes of the open border and labour migration along with diseases and trafficking.

For instance, a comprehensive labour migration process, backed by strong legal aspects between India and Nepal can be established that will in turn protect the rights of the stakeholders. Only a systematic and orderly approach with proper sharing of information along with skill development can be of utility.

This is how the Nepal government can ensure safety for its citizens in any host country. In this process, the civil society actors can also be involved, helping to regenerate better response among the masses. This will develop human capital and also encourage betterment of diplomatic and bilateral ties between Nepal and its southern neighbor in such trying times.

Country Reports


NATO reaffirms support

At the plenary meeting of the Afghan National Army Trust Fund Board, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) allies and partners renewed their commitment to providing financial support to the Afghan forces until 2024. NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg stated that the total contributions made to the Trust Fund since its establishment in 2007 was US$ 3.2 billion. Stoltenberg further affirmed that the military alliance would not leave Afghanistan until security conditions allowed for it.

Hekmatyar for separate talks with Taliban

A former warlord and leader of the Hezb-i-Islami, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, has announced that he intended to start separate talks with the Taliban, citing the deadlock in the ongoing intra-Afghan talks in Doha, and accusing President Ashraf Ghani of wanting to hold onto unencumbered power. The government expressed its opposition to the idea of any separate talks taking place with the Taliban, except that of their own. Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said that he could neither confirm nor deny that Hekmatyar had been in contact with the senior leadership of the militant group.


Japan help for refugees

Japan pledged to support local farmers and Rohingya refugees living in Bangladesh and provide US$ 5 million. In this respect, Government of Japan and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) signed an agreement. Japanese assistance will support WFP’s Farmers’ Market operation in Cox’s Bazar.

WFP’s Farmer Market programme will be supporting 2,400 Bangladeshi local farmers in Cox’s Bazar Districts who will provide fresh, locally sourced vegetables at the market servicing 20,000 Rohingya refugees who fled their home in Myanmar. Rohingyas are inhabitants of Rakhine state in Myanmar. Nearly one million Rohingyas are living in Bangladesh since 2017 as they fled their home in Myanmar following atrocities of the Myanmar security forces.

No final exams for class 6-9

Education Minister Dipu Moni informed that the students of class 6-9 will be promoted to the next class without annual examination this year. The decision is going to impact nearly 10 million students studying these classes. The decision was taken in view of the  Covid-19 pandemic situation following which schools in the country remained closed for around 7 months.


UN, an instrument: PM

As a part of the UN-75 initiative commemorating the anniversary on 24 October, UN Bhutan focused on enhancing youth development by encouraging young people to become environmental change-makers. Prime Minister Dr Lotay Tshering said on the occasion that for Bhutan, the UN would continue to be instrumental in spearheading global collective action for building a better world.

Reviewing hydropower law

The government is in the process of reviewing the nation’s hydropower development policy as well as legislation emphasising on 100 percent government ownership, inter-governmental bilateral arrangement with partner countries, and sub-regional and regional arrangements with full ownership resting with the government of Bhutan. According to officials, policy review was needed for Parliament to deliberate the amendment of the Bhutan Electricity Act 2001. Both the policy and the Bill to amend the 2001 law, limits private sector participation.


Vaccine, as soon as possible: PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the nation on 20 October and cautioned people against the lingering threat of Covid-19 in the festive season even though the restrictions have been eased to certain extent. In his address, which is his seventh one on the pandemic, Modi said that India was relatively more successful in saving lives from coronavirus than countries like the US, Brazil, Spain and Britain. He promised he people that the vaccine, once made, would be delivered to all people as soon a possible.

HC bans entry to Pujas

The Calcutta High Court has ordered a ban the entry of visitors to puja pandals just few a days before the commencement of the Durga puja celebrations in West Bengal, in order to curb the spread of Covid-19 during the festive season. In the light of the ban, many puja organising committees installed giant screens outside the pandals so that people can get a glimpse of the deities. The footfall in the puja pandals have also been quite less this year due to the pandemic.


Health Minister quits

In a last-minute bid to avoid an embarrassing no-trust vote in Parliament, moved by his ruling MDP, Health Minister Abdulla Ameen put in his papers, after a midnight meeting with President Ibrahim Solih. He had been holding out since mid-August, when the statutory Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) found discrepancies and corruption in the multi-million emergency orders for ventilators, at the height of the continuing Covid pandemic. It came to a crux when MDP parliamentarians, egged on by Speaker Mohammed Nasheed, who is also the long-time party chief, began a signature campaign for moving the no-trust motion even after their efforts failed the obtain the required 30 votes in the 65-member MDP grouping in the 87-seat House.

Pompeo coming

On a visit to the Indian capital of New Delhi for the bilateral 2+2 annual meeting between the Foreign and Defence Secretaries of the two countries, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be making a day’s visit to Male, to meet with his counterpart, Abdulla Shahid, and discuss matters of common interest. This is the first visit by a US Secretary of State since 1992, when incumbent James Baker III was in office. Coming in the footsteps of bilateral Framework Agreement for military cooperation between the two countries, the two nations will discuss expanding bilateral cooperation and also their common commitment for a ‘ruled-based maritime order’, which when translated is aimed at China.


Suu Kyi seeks absentee-ballot

The Naypyitaw Union Territory Election Commission branch has said that President Win Myint and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi have applied for casting absentee-ballots at Zabuthiri Township election commission branch, where they are currently residing. They cannot return to their respective home constituencies because of travel restrictions imposed for COVID containment. Thus, it has been arranged that the President will vote for candidates in Tamwe, Yangon Region while the State Counsellor will vote for candidates in Bahan constituency, Yangon Region with absentee ballots.

Pandemic on the rise

Dr. Maw Maw Oo, Yangon General Hospital (YGH) Emergency Ward chief stated that the number of serious Covid-19 patients was rising in the worst-hit Yangon Region and so is the number of patients who need oxygen. According to him, previously only 20 percent of the patients arrived in YGH needed oxygen whereas now 50 percent of the Covid cases were serious patients who required oxygen. With the arrangement made by Yangon Region COVID Committee, Yangon Region received about 5,050 oxygen cylinders with 40-litre canisters. However, the demand may increase in future if more serious cases are reported.


Rail-link with China

The Chinese Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has been an important cornerstone for the landlocked Himalayan country. Within this aspect, both countries have been keenly looking at the ‘Trans-Himalayan Railway Project’ as one of the key fulcrums around which the economy and geopolitics of the region depends. In a recent BRI event organized by International Department of CPC, this issue was discussed, with a view to further strengthen the bilateral tie for an enhanced strategic partnership. This would also further Nepal’s position in the global domain.

Swiss aid for MSMEs

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) in partnership with NMB Bank and Laxmi Bank, has launched the ‘Covid-19 MSME Fund Nepal’. Primarily aimed at supporting the worthy small and medium scale business ventures that have been adversely affected by the virus, this cause holds the potential of helping the country come out of the economic crsis.


FM says India’s designs will fail

With the UN’s Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) deciding that Pakistan will remain on grey list until February 2021,  Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said  that New Delhi’s plans to "push Pakistan into the blacklist" are bound to fail. He also said that world has acknowledged that Islamabad under the current government has taken many concrete steps in accordance with the FATF action plan to end funding to terror organisations. The FATF while announcing the decision said, "To date, Pakistan has made progress across all action plan items and has now largely addressed 21 of the 27 action items. As all action plan deadlines have expired, the FATF strongly urges Pakistan to swiftly complete its full action plan by February 2021."

Sri Lanka

Big vote for 20-A

Parliament voted in the controversial 20-A by 156 votes, five more than the ruling SLPP combine’s 150 – the required two-thirds majority in the 225-member House. The Government moved amendments based on the Supreme Court’s determination, clarifying the need for a public referendum on the President’s powers to dissolve Parliament after one year and for impunity for the incumbent from court cases. Ruling alliance partners who had expressed dissatisfaction over the continuance of the original provision, permitting ‘dual citizenship holders’ to contest elections in the country, after President Gotabaya Rajapaksa personally promised them to withdraw it under a new Constitution, promised within a year. While six Opposition MPs voted for 20-A, the ‘dual citizenship’ clause won 157 votes. Former President Maithripala Sirisena, whose SLFP parent of SLPP is a partner in the Government, did not attend the vote, and informed the President and Prime Minister Rajapaksa of his decision, beforehand.

Covid is back

Covid-19 pandemic, which Sri Lanka had successfully checked ahead of the parliamentary polls in August, is back again, with the early cases identified in a readymade clothes factory in suburban Gampaha district. The virus has since spread across the country, and the Government has since proclaimed police curfew in different packets to check against further spread. However, no nation-wide curfew is just now on cards, Army Commander, Lt-Gen Shavendra Silva, who is heading the Covid Task Force, has said.



Opinion Pieces

Jason Criss Howk, Andrew Hyde and Annie Pforzheimer, “Four Lessons for Security Sector Reform in Afghanistan”, United States Institute of Peace, 21October 2020

Elene L. Pasquini, “Afghanistan: Hope Fades Amidst Fear and Silence”, The Citizen, 20October 2020


The Middle East North Africa Financial Network, “A Glimpse of Hope in the Dark”, 20 October 2020

The Daily Outlook Afghanistan, “Nascent Democracy Vulnerable to Escalated Violence”, 19 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Anita Inder Singh, “ Is India slipping behind? Bang;adesh reveals India changgelnged-pre-eminence in the Bay of Bengal”, Times of India, 21 October 2020

Sabaria Chowdhury Balland, “Rohingya’s suffering continues in Bangladesh”, Asia Times, 19 October 2020


How Bangladesh's GDP Continues To Grow Despite COVID-19 BOOM”, Dr. Ahsan H. Mansur, Chairman of BRAC Bank,, 17 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Sonam Tobden Rabgye, “Bhutan’s response to Covid-19: Challenges and opportunities for Bhutan, Bangladesh and India”, Kuensel, 24 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Ramesh Chand, “FPTC Act will put pressure on APMC markets to become competitive”, The Indian Express, 24 October 2020

Pratap Bhanu Mehta, “Opposition must think harder about political economy of protest to counter new political economy of reform”, The Indian Express, 23 October 2020

Harish Khare, “The Raj Bhavan’s new role — taking centre stageThe Hindu, 19 October 2020


The Hindu, “Taking on the Centre: On States rejecting farm laws” 24 October 2020

The Indian Express, “The wrong dose”, 23 October 2020

hindustantimes, “The political twist in the Darjeeling hills”, 23 October 2020

hindustantimes, “Being a woman politician in India”, 21 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Ahmed Aiham, “Digging at the root of environmental protection in Maldives”, The Edition, 22 October 2020

N Sathiya Moorthy, “Yameen camp’s effort to take ‘India Out’ campaign to Parliament fails”,, 19 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Jayanta Kalita, “No End in Sight for India’s Naga Peace Talks as Rebels Harden Stand on Flag, Constitution”, The Irrawaddy, 23 October 2020

Yaw Bawm Mangshang,  “If Myanmar Voters Want Different Results, They Need to Elect New Leaders”, The Irrawaddy, 20 October 2020

Kavi Chongkittavorn, “COVID-19 Tests Thai-Myanmar Ties”, The Irrawaddy, 20 October 2020


The Irrawaddy, “Shady Boss of Myanmar’s UDP Michael Kyaw Myint More Than Just a Fugitive”, 19 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

Bhairab Raj Kaini, “Can job creation and productivity increase happen together?Republica, 20 October 2020

Sujeev Shakya, “This year’s Dashain is different,” The Kathmandu Post, 19 October 2020


The Kathmandu Post, “Building back better,” 23 October 2020


Opinion Pieces

A.G. Noorani, “Kashmir’s future”, Dawn, 23 October 2020

I.A. Rehman, “The opposition matters”, Dawn, 22 October 2020

Dr Moonis Ahmar, “Time to evolve a strategic culture in Pakistan, The Express Tribune,22October 2020

Talat Masood, “Breaking the impasse”, The Express Tribune,22October 2020

Zahid Hussain, “A precarious situation, Dawn, 21 October 2020


Dawn, “NAB on the rampage”, 23 October 2020

Dawn, “Hekmatyar’s visit”, 23 October 2020

Sri Lanka

Opinion Pieces

D B S Jeyaraj, “From JR’s 2nd Amendment to Gota’s 20th Amendment”, Daily Mirror Online, 24 October 2020

Malinda Seneviratne, “The forgotten 13th bears upon the 19th and the 20th, Daily Mirror Online, 23 October 2020

Srimal Fernando and Justin Chua, “Re-defining Australia’s South Asia foreign policy, particularly with Sri Lanka”, The Island, 23 October 2020

Kelum Bandara, “Will 20-A be pyrrhic victory for Pohottuwa Government?”, Daily Mirror Online, 22 October 2020

Ravi Nagahawatte, “Signs of ‘spring’ in nationalist Sri Lanka”, Daily Mirror Online, 22 October 2020

N Sathiya Moorthy, “Sri Lanka, sole battle-ground for Neo Cold War?”, Ceylon Today, 20 October 2020

Jehan Perera, “Make 20-A an instrument of modernising Govt”, The Island, 20 October 2020

N Sathiya Moorthy, “It’s not cricket!”, Colombo Gazette, 19 October 2020


Daily Mirror Online, “Murali: Owned by two nations”, 23 October 2020


Kamanthi Wickremesinghe, “Most proactive steps executed to fight pandemic: Army Commander”, Daily Mirror Online, 21 October 2020


Afghanistan: Shubhangi Pandey

Bangladesh: Joyeeta Bhattacharjee

Bhutan: Mihir Bhonsale

India: Ambar Kumar Ghosh

Maldives & Sri Lanka: N Sathiya Moorthy

Myanmar: Sreeparna Banerjee

Nepal: Sohini Nayak

Pakistan: Ayjaz Wani

The views expressed above belong to the author(s). ORF research and analyses now available on Telegram! Click here to access our curated content — blogs, longforms and interviews.