The ritual halwa has been consumed in the cavernous basement of the Ministry of Finance and the budget printing team consigned incommunicado for the next ten days in a Byzantine tactic to maintain budget secrecy. Nothing illustrates the continuing “duality” of India than the fact that meanwhile the Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley remains deeply engaged […]Read More Interim Budget 2019 – style and substance
In these cynical times, slim is the market for big ideas, unsupported by facts and figures. The Finance Minister’s 2018-19 budget proposals have met the same fate. The three big picture proposals –a price assurance scheme covering all Kharif crops at a minimum 50% above their cost of production; boosting agri-product exports from US$30 billion to […]Read More Jaitley’s Budgetary Trident
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, recently released a book titled India Transformed — 25 years of Economic Reform, edited by Rakesh Mohan, at the appropriately historic Nehru Memorial Library. After the obligatory photo-op, Dr Singh turned to finance minister Arun Jaitley and with a beatific smile, handed the book over to him, as if, symbolically, […]Read More FM Jaitley, aim for the sweet spot
(photo credit: http://www.ndtv.com) The Republican sweep of the mid-term Senate elections in the US closely resembles the Modi wave in India. In both cases, electoral disgust with wooly idealism and unfulfilled promises fueled the wave. In the US, Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve caused a stir on October 17 by labelling as “stagnant” […]Read More India-US in sync: wooly Liberals out, pragmatic Conservatives in
(photocredit: dnaindia.com) It is unlikely that the national coalition in Afghanistan, which the US has stitched together, will last. More likely, the Unity Government provides a convenient cover of artificially generated “peace” allowing the US to withdraw, with “honour”, from the “graveyard of invaders”. Once it leaves, the US shall make all efforts to secure […]Read More Will Ashraf Ghani be Afghanistan’s Manmohan Singh?
“Mujra”, the traditional PakIndia dance of seduction honed in glittering Lahore, immortalized by the ever beautiful, dusky Rekha in Umrao Jan, a classic film by our very own desi, aristocrat, designer Muzaffar Ali. Mujra is a dance of deception. The idea is for the danseuse to so mesmerize the viewers, that their head gets delinked […]Read More Jaitley’s Maiden Budget Mujra