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South Asia Weekly | XIII; 52
Jan 02, 2021

South Asia Weekly | XIII; 52

News and analyses from South Asia this week.

South Asia: Ending, or losing, an ‘endless war’ in Afghanistan?
Nov 02, 2020

South Asia: Ending, or losing, an ‘endless war’ in Afghanistan?

“With improved implementation of the plan of action for South Asia, Trump has impelled the region to constantly recalibrate strategic choices while

South Asia’s tryst with floods: A story less-known
Sep 22, 2021

South Asia’s tryst with floods: A story less-known

As floods continue to wreak more havoc each passing monsoon, it is time for India to lead the way in effective flood management

South China Sea verdict: Now China's international reputation at stake
Jul 26, 2016

South China Sea verdict: Now China's international reputation at stake

China must now worry about its international reputation if it flagrantly refuses to do anything and remains rigid in its approach to the SCS dispute.

Sowing the wind, reaping the whirlwind
Jun 19, 2022

Sowing the wind, reaping the whirlwind

The self-goal could have been avoided, but the ruling party saw the emerging warning signals with eyes wide shut. Some party sections clearly felt they were clever enough to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds, and that religious polarisation in domestic politics could work to electoral advantage even as the PM and his diplomats wooed the Muslim nations of the Gulf. Perhaps, they don’t recognise that we live in an interconnected world, w

Speed limit of vehicles on Indian expressways
Oct 23, 2021

Speed limit of vehicles on Indian expressways

The speed limit on Indian roads should be reconsidered only after stringent road regulations are in place to deal with issues unique to India

Spouses of H1B workers are a worried lot
Feb 27, 2017

Spouses of H1B workers are a worried lot

Work authorisation for H4 covers dependent spouses of H1B non-immigrants on two conditions.

Sri Lanka 2003: The Continuing Deadlock
Jan 12, 2004

Sri Lanka 2003: The Continuing Deadlock

The continuing deadlock in the peace process and in the political equation between President Chandrika Kumaratunga and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe due to their failure to reach an accord on the ground rules for the smooth functioning of the co-habitation Government marked the political landscape in Sri Lanka during 2003.

Sri Lanka and BIMSTEC in 2021
Jan 15, 2021

Sri Lanka and BIMSTEC in 2021

Sri Lanka should use the upcoming summit to move forward with its proposal to ensure that BIMSTEC maintains its momentum.

Sri Lanka: A strident message across the Palk Strait
Sep 13, 2013

Sri Lanka: A strident message across the Palk Strait

Tamil National Alliance (TNA) chief ministerial candidate for the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) elections in Sri Lanka, Justice C V Wigneswaran, could not have said it more candidly and categorically.

Sri Lanka: After the sacking, a new CJ?
Jan 14, 2013

Sri Lanka: After the sacking, a new CJ?

As a follow-up to the impeachment motion passed by Parliament by a two-thirds majority, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has sacked the nation's Chief Justice, Shirani Bandaranayake.

Sri Lanka: Growing bilateral relations with India under President Wickremesinghe
Jul 27, 2022

Sri Lanka: Growing bilateral relations with India under President Wickremesinghe

With increasing assistance from India to abate the Sri Lankan crisis, the new presidency seems to be keen to enhance bilateral relations.

Sri Lanka: Is a new India-centric aid group more viable than others?
Jul 02, 2022

Sri Lanka: Is a new India-centric aid group more viable than others?

Aid from India, Japan, Russia and China seems to be more viable than aid from the West as it accompanies political conditionalities.

Sri Lanka: Need for a 'national anthem' for all
Feb 08, 2013

Sri Lanka: Need for a 'national anthem' for all

In the heat and dust kicked off by issues such as the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, Sri Lanka missed what could well have emerged as a national discourse on an issue of equal, if not greater import.

Sri Lanka: The Diaspora Talk
Nov 12, 2010

Sri Lanka: The Diaspora Talk

Overnight, there is more activity on the Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora front than earlier. It is not only that the 'Trans-national government of Tamil Eelam' (TNGTE) has given itself a 'cabinet'with US-based Rudrakumaran as 'prime minister',

Sri Lanka: TNA sending out confusing signals to India?
Oct 20, 2014

Sri Lanka: TNA sending out confusing signals to India?

Sri Lanka's Northern Province Tamil Chief Minister C V Wigneswaran seems to be sending contradictory signals to India through his actions. On the one hand, he wants India to play an active role in finding a 'political solution' to the ethnic problem. On the other, he boycotted the India-funded Colombo-Jaffna railway inauguration and earlier President's invitation to be part of the delegation to India.

Sri Lanka: Why Modi Govt should build on inherited policy
Jul 25, 2014

Sri Lanka: Why Modi Govt should build on inherited policy

If anyone in southern Tamil Nadu, or across the Palk Strait in Sri Lanka, thought that there would be a grandiose shift in India's policy towards the southern Sri Lankan neighbour under a new, BJP dispensation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a lie to their hopes and claims.

Srinagar Consensus: A gamble on growth
May 20, 2017

Srinagar Consensus: A gamble on growth

Against several odds, what began as the Srinagar conversation has transformed into the Srinagar Consensus, making it arguably the most far-reaching po

State of Global Terrorism
Sep 11, 2005

State of Global Terrorism

What are the imperatives if the international community has to ultimately prevail over international jihadi terrorism of the Al Qaeda brand?

Statehood or Autonomy: Rethinking Governance in India’s Capital
Oct 30, 2015

Statehood or Autonomy: Rethinking Governance in India’s Capital

Delhi, India's national capital, has long been the subject of a quandary: Should it be granted full statehood, or maximum autonomy commensurate with its megalopolis status? is paper takes a tour of select national capitals to understand how other nations have arranged their governance and handled competing jurisdictions and functions. Lessons are drawn from this examination of other capitals, and recommendations are put forth towards a more sensi

States should spend more on nutrition
Sep 11, 2017

States should spend more on nutrition

Greater fiscal autonomy has not yet translated into higher spending on nutrition by states

Stop being a bully State
Oct 13, 2015

Stop being a bully State

Our brand of secularism is too passive for anything but harmful politicking. It is time to make it proactive and more effective. Perception is everything in today's social media-powered world. Let's not squander our common future for petty temporal gain.

Strategies for strengthening disaster finance in Indonesia
Sep 26, 2023

Strategies for strengthening disaster finance in Indonesia

Indonesia is highly vulnerable to climate change disasters and requires the integration of insurance and mitigation strategies as integral components

Streak AI Technologies: Democratising stock markets with retail intelligence software
Nov 03, 2020

Streak AI Technologies: Democratising stock markets with retail intelligence software

We are at the cusp of globalisation and digital connectivity, which has transformed how product building needs to be thought out.

Strengthening Anti-Human Trafficking Mechanisms in the Bay of Bengal Region
May 11, 2023

Strengthening Anti-Human Trafficking Mechanisms in the Bay of Bengal Region

Large numbers of people, most of them women, are trafficked in the Bay of Bengal region. Despite these countries having anti-trafficking laws in place in line with the United Nations Trafficking in Persons Protocol, the incidence of the criminal activity continues unabated. This brief gives an overview of human trafficking in the Bay of Bengal region, particularly around the contiguous zone of India–Nepal–Bangladesh, which has become a hub of

Strengthening climate diplomacy: An imperative for Indian climate in the new decade
Apr 26, 2021

Strengthening climate diplomacy: An imperative for Indian climate in the new decade

Championing a climate and development agenda in India’s bilateral, regional and multilateral collaborations can help boost trade, drive investments

Strengthening energy-health nexus for health security
Jan 26, 2024

Strengthening energy-health nexus for health security

There is a fundamental link between energy and public health. In advancing health, energy security is critical.

Strengthening Europe's defense amidst Russian invasion and rise of Trump
Mar 22, 2024

Strengthening Europe's defense amidst Russian invasion and rise of Trump

The EU is now taking a multi-pronged approach to strengthen its defence capabilities in the midst of  Russian invasion of Ukraine and rise of Trump i

Strengthening India’s Global Influence through a Sound Public Diplomacy Policy
Oct 23, 2023

Strengthening India’s Global Influence through a Sound Public Diplomacy Policy

This brief tackles the crucial role of public diplomacy in enhancing India's global influence. It argues that India should exert effort to communicate its rich cultural heritage and economic growth story to foreign audiences, and recommends a roadmap that involves linking public diplomacy to national security, the establishment of a specialised public diplomacy agency, and creating the position of a chief public diplomat. A well-structured public

Strengthening municipal leadership in India: The potential of directly elected mayors with executive powers
Sep 04, 2018

Strengthening municipal leadership in India: The potential of directly elected mayors with executive powers

The question of municipal leadership is of great significance in urban governance in India. There are various models of the position of chief executive of an urban local body (ULB), predominantly tilting towards the ‘strong mayor’ model either through ‘presidentialisation’ of the office or through a ‘mayor-in-council’[1] system. In India, it is the ‘state appointed municipal commissioner’ model that holds sway, sitting over a popu

Strengthening the C4ISR capabilities of India’s Armed Forces: The Role of Small Satellites
Jun 15, 2020

Strengthening the C4ISR capabilities of India’s Armed Forces: The Role of Small Satellites

Small satellites have gained considerable importance in recent years. Although small spacecraft have existed for decades, their military applications have recently gained prominence owing to technological advances in their development and integration into the armed services of the major spacefaring countries across the world. This paper analyses the significance of small satellites in the C4ISR capabilities of the three service branches of the In

Stricter implementation of laws key to women's safety
Mar 19, 2014

Stricter implementation of laws key to women's safety

Safer cities are a product of technology, policing, community participation, education, and planning and architectural design. In the policy frame, focus should be on inclusive development, participatory approaches, identity mainstreaming, and sustainable urban development to create a more equal and tolerant urban society.

Striking with caution: Beyond the performative muscle flexing, Islamabad had little choice
Jan 28, 2024

Striking with caution: Beyond the performative muscle flexing, Islamabad had little choice

This return to business as usual is reflective of the wariness on both sides to escalate the crisis further and prevent it from metastasising into a new front of conflict.

Strong ties with US in India's interest
Jul 14, 2014

Strong ties with US in India's interest

Like China did in the early 1980s, India needs to exploit the opportunity of good relations with the US to become a stronger economic and military power. Indeed, as a decisive leader, Modi could well transform the relationship with the US and enable it to reach its full potential.

Super Hornets may pip Rafales in Indian Navy’s Carrier-based Fighter Aircraft Procurement
Jul 22, 2022

Super Hornets may pip Rafales in Indian Navy’s Carrier-based Fighter Aircraft Procurement

Purchase of F/A-18 Super Hornets can herald the beginning of a closer long-term relationship with the US, which shall be beneficial for India and espe

Surgical Strikes and Deterrence-Stability in South Asia
Jun 24, 2017

Surgical Strikes and Deterrence-Stability in South Asia

Indian announcement of having conducted surgical strikes across the de-facto border with Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir has major implications for deterrence-stability in South Asia. New Delhi has sought to devise a military strategy to respond to Pakistan’s sub-conventional war that does not lead to escalation of conflict to nuclear levels and collapse of nuclear deterrence. This paper analyses India’s surgical strikes of September 2016, thei

Sustainable business practices: Imperatives and pathways
Aug 11, 2023

Sustainable business practices: Imperatives and pathways

A move towards universal business sustainability will need a multi-stakeholder approach, legal enforcement, and government policies

Sustainable finance bonds: The emerging face of finance
May 03, 2024

Sustainable finance bonds: The emerging face of finance

While sustainable development and green growth are replacing conventional notions of economic growth and development, conventional finance is being re

Syria: At the threshold
Oct 27, 2011

Syria: At the threshold

Everywhere in Syria the grand conspiracy of the US, Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar to overthrow the Assad regime is feverishly discussed. Turkey reportedly tried to mediate in this crisis by suggesting that Muslim Brotherhood should be included in the negotiations, but Damascus refused since the Brotherhood is a religious grouping.

Tackling India’s unemployment problem: Services, skills, and symmetry
Apr 15, 2024

Tackling India’s unemployment problem: Services, skills, and symmetry

The Indian service sector necessitates the implementation of specific policies to guarantee the adoption of technology and upskilling to secure growth

Tackling Industrial Pollution in India: Where is the Data?
May 10, 2023

Tackling Industrial Pollution in India: Where is the Data?

This brief argues that the understanding of city-level air quality could be strengthened if residents who live in spaces where industries are present, are able to access information about industrial emissions in their areas. Indeed, even as there are some 4,000 OCEMS (online continuous emissions/effluents monitoring systems) in place in different pollutive industries across the country, the data they collect—inarguably vital for public health�

Tactical gaps in Indo-Russia ties despite Putin-Modi’s bonhomie
Jun 05, 2017

Tactical gaps in Indo-Russia ties despite Putin-Modi’s bonhomie

Speculation was rife that the bilateral relationship had lost its strategic sheen and had become a transactional one, where Russia was just a convenient one-window stop for some military equipment.

Tactics & Counter-tactics: PWG NAxals & Security Forces
Mar 13, 2004

Tactics & Counter-tactics: PWG NAxals & Security Forces

Naxalites of the People¿s War Group (PWG) and the security forces (SF) continuously devise tactics and counter-tactics to defeat one another. In a latest move, the SFs formed Counter Action Teams (CAT) to target the Permanent Action Teams (PAT) of the PWG. The tactic achieved its first success in Warangal District, Andhra Pradesh (AP). On April 11, 2004 two prominent Naxalites were hunted down by a CAT in the district, after reportedly engaging

Takeaways for India from IPCC’s Assessment of Global Mitigation Efforts
Aug 14, 2023

Takeaways for India from IPCC’s Assessment of Global Mitigation Efforts

The findings of Working Group-III (WG-III) of the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) clearly highlight the global failure to scale-up mitigation actions to achieve the Paris Climate targets. Immediate and unprecedented action will now be needed to avoid catastrophic global warming in this century. The WG-III report details some of the policy actions needed at the global level to enable a sustai

Taliban’s Return Threatens Past Gains for Aghanistan’s Women and Girls
Feb 22, 2022

Taliban’s Return Threatens Past Gains for Aghanistan’s Women and Girls

In the midst of the chaotic withdrawal of the US-led forces from Afghanistan, the Taliban swept back to power in Kabul on 15 August 2021. Since then, the Taliban have repeatedly attempted to project a more moderate brand of governance. However, the Taliban leaders have yet to enunciate clear policies on issues such as women’s and girls’ access to education, employment, and political participation. Early indications nonetheless suggest that th

Talking to Pakistan Taliban: Will it work?
Sep 20, 2013

Talking to Pakistan Taliban: Will it work?

The Nawaz Sharif government's offer of the olive branch to TTP seems more like an act of desperation than a serious attempt to bring about stability in the country. As the previous deals with militants have shown, the outcomes have favoured militants more than the governments.