Meghnad Desai loves to cook, watch and write about old Bollywood movies and shuttles between London, Delhi and Goa. He pursues controversies on economics, history and anything else which catches his attention. He is also a British parliamentarian sitting in the House of Lords. He has written over 25 books, over 200 articles in learned journals and hundreds of newspaper columns in UK and India.
The victory of the Mahagathbandhan (MGB) in Bihar is colouring the hopes and strategies in this year’s elections.
The release of the secret files concerning Subhas Chandra Bose has again brought the debate about his death back in focus.
Over time, the Centre has weakened, though it has financial clout. The states have become more powerful.
BJP government has faced an unprecedented Opposition for reasons which are well known. The Prime Minister has to show that much has been done and more will be done.
From the Fifties to the Seventies, there was serious debate on how imminent the Communist Revolution was in India.
China's National Assembly has 2,987 members. As the largest democracy, India should expect no less.
Sharad Pawar tells a story of how during the brief regime of Chandra Shekhar, he was involved in a genuine act of reconciliation.
Parliament has been turned into a general purpose complaint akhada.
Urban governments in India are abject failures. The elected representatives jostle to control access to land as a surefire way of looting the gullible.
There has been an endless quest for a single book, a single faith to bind the vast and varied lands of India together.
The only thing the governments at the Centre and in states need to do is to protect people's right to free speech and save them from violent attacks.
After all,there have been terrorist attacks on the West since mid-1990s, if not since the Munich Olympics of 1972. What is different now?
The BJP was the junior partner of the JD(U) in 2005 and 2010. It failed to take any credit for the development in Bihar, leaving all to Nitish. Sushil Modi, one of the sharpest minds in the BJP, did not get his due.
There were race riots across the country. Academics were in revolt. Yet Margaret Thatcher went on winning election after election.
Majority in the Lok Sabha is neither necessary nor sufficient to govern India. What any government has to do is to build a coalition around a programme everyone can agree on.
Since last year, when the BJP won, there has been an explosion of subaltern politics. Various events have taken place across the nation reflecting local concerns of ordinary people.
Fighters for liberal rights cannot rely on any Government. Remember the Emergency. As Taslima Nasreen and Salman Rushdie know, the seculars are just as bad when their vote banks are at stake.
Much of the BJP's core Hindutva thinking is Brahminical.
Would it be possible for the honourable court to tell them that as there is a backlog of 3.5 crore cases, they go to the back of the queue?
Bhagwat’s sense of timing is terrible coming so close to the Bihar elections. Even so, it is legitimate to raise the question of how long will reservations last.
Either the world has changed and Jeremy Corbyn will surprise everyone by attracting votes of previously apathetic citizens or the Labour Party will once again lose in 2020.
Nearer home, Sonia Gandhi has been confirmed as president of the Congress for a record 18th year.
The PM launched many initiatives and was on a 24x7 active mode in the first six months. In the new year came the surprises.
From now on China will be like any other economy.
The forthcoming meeting of the NSAs is suitably high level but does not involve the elected heads of government who met at Ufa.
Parliament is sovereign but it also has to serve the people.
The suspension of 25 Congress MPs raises only one question. Why not all 44?
There will no doubt continue a debate about justice to Yakub Memon as there has been about Afzal Guru and the Batla House encounter.
While the Congress had monopoly of power at the Centre and in the states, it did not matter how power was divided.
Last week, as the negotiations for the Greek bailout climaxed, one could say that Helmut Schmidt had failed in his gamble.
He was struck by Parkinson’s disease in 1982 but did not let that slow him down and went on working at his research and teaching till the very end.
He may not wish to sack Raje or Chouhan. This is because he respects regional leaders’ autonomy. He is also aware that no due process has been initiated.
The BJP is not like the Congress. Power is diffused among different people depending on their popular regional base, their equation with the RSS and the preferences of the rank and file.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has shown true leadership and mobilised the resources which the urgency demanded.
BJP is a relative newcomer to the role of the ruling elite and Narendra Modi has been an outsider to the jhappi rajashahi .
The Partition is a wound that has not healed. It still incites passion.