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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Suhas Palshikar

The writer taught political science at Savitribai Phule Pune University, Pune, and is chief editor of 'Studies in Indian Politics'.

The 21st century challenge for democracy
Tue, Jan 04, 2022

Suhas Palshikar writes: A renewed public discourse around questions of its meaning, repertoire, purpose and limits will have to be enriched.

How do we understand the spectacle at Kashi?
Thu, Dec 23, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: The master-narrative unfolding through events like the inauguration of the Kashi-Vishwanath corridor popularises a new social contract for a Hindu state.

Making the House work
Tue, Nov 30, 2021

🔴 Suhas Palshikar writes: When a government with a comfortable majority does not reach out, Opposition must step in.

The challenge that lies before the farmers’ agitation
Thu, Oct 28, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: It needs to transform itself into a movement, aspire to transcend prejudices and bring out the sublime among the followers rather than allow them to remain passive participants unwilling to change themselves.

What recent cabinet reshuffles by BJP and Congress reveal about state of parliamentary democracy
Fri, Oct 01, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: The message is chillingly pessimistic: They tell us that parties hope to win elections on contingent optics, tentative accommodations and last-minute shows of course correction rather than on the basis of policies, programmes or performance.

Why must non-BJP parties unite? It’s about more than their existence
Sun, Sep 05, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: India’s self-hood and routine democratic politics are at stake. Opposition must recognise this.

India has lost sight of the dreams it dreamt at Independence
Sat, Aug 14, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: We mistook dreams for fulfilment and wandered onto the highway of denial and erasure. To course-correct, India needs a re-imagined politics.

How do we address the complicated claims of backwardness by various politically powerful castes?
Fri, Jul 16, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: It's a task best left to a third backward classes commission. The question is, are we ready for it?

With BJP in Delhi, states must find ways to regain autonomy
Thu, Jun 17, 2021

Suhas Palshikar writes: How can the states retrieve their autonomy? One can imagine four routes to a return to a semblance of federal politics — fiscal strength, governance, political strength and regional identity

TMC win can give new life to anti-BJP politics, but Opposition needs greater clarity about intent
Mon, May 03, 2021

In the absence of clarity on why they oppose the BJP, the non-BJP parties will be doing a great disservice to the democratic character of our politics even if they choose to come together to form a non-BJP front

Behind the pandemic’s devastation is a monumental failure of governance
Fri, Apr 30, 2021

From a long and inhuman lockdown to political blame game and one-upmanship, here are five instances of misgovernance during the last 15 months

Two homegrown questions for Indian democrats
Wed, Mar 17, 2021

How does one handle domestic criticism of the corrosion of democracy in India? How do we understand democracy?

From Delhi’s borders, govt sends out a message: Power and people are clearly separated
Fri, Feb 05, 2021

It is increasingly clear that the government is bent on both maligning the agitation and, more generally, delegitimising the idea of protest and popular agency.

Why siege of Capitol in Washington DC resonates closer home, carries lessons for us all
Tue, Jan 12, 2021

The US experience indicates that democracy requires continuous caution. But perhaps the least learned lesson at home in India is about the comparative pathology of such autarchy lurking in our midst.

Farmers’ protest may be bringing a small beginning of normal politics, of negotiation and compromise
Fri, Dec 11, 2020

Suhas Palshikar writes: In itself, a prime minister agreeing to negotiate is not a shortcoming, but after having built an aura of non-negotiability about his wisdom, a settlement would mean the first step in converting the all-powerful and all-knowing supreme leader into a more routine political player.

Decoding the close Bihar election 2020 verdict
Thu, Nov 19, 2020

Bihar Assembly election results 2020: Held against the backdrop of the pandemic, the Bihar contest was also one of the closest in recent times. In this post-poll survey, Lokniti-CSDS unpacks the many aspects of NDA’s narrow victory over the Mahagathbandhan — caste & community, confidence in Modi, and women voting more for NDA.

BJP’s Bihar performance sets template for its expansion in states
Wed, Nov 11, 2020

The popularity of Modi seems to be a stable factor in the BJP’s electoral politics. So much so that he has transformed into a brand. Like a brand, he can be used in any state, any context and against any competition.

The Hathras case is symptomatic of the disappearance of Dalit politics
Fri, Oct 16, 2020

Suhas Palshikar writes: Dalit politics is caught between balancing concerns of political power and altering its social dynamics.

SAD exit from NDA may not hurt BJP much but will shake up political game
Wed, Sep 30, 2020

The isolation would allow the BJP to more openly march towards where it has been itching to move in the past year or so — an ideological position that openly defies the Constitution and a political practice that rejects all democratic norms.

At Ayodhya, we will see dismantling of the old, and the bhoomi pujan of the new republic
Tue, Aug 04, 2020

If the BJP is guilty of dismantling the republic, all other parties are silent approvers. Like in the case of the most ardent opponent of majoritarianism, the epitaph for India’s slowly dying republic could also be “Hey Ram”.

Congress fumbling, as in Rajasthan, could end up being catalyst for spurt of regional parties
Mon, Jul 20, 2020

Suhas Palshikar writes: It would be interesting to see whether the Congress seeks to move in the direction of a more federal handling of factionalism without necessarily allowing state-level factions to hijack the state units. But if what is happening in Rajasthan is mere drift, then it seems more than likely that leaders like Pilot, from many states, might consider forming their own state parties.

Will there be a George Floyd moment in India’s public life?
Thu, Jun 11, 2020

India seems to have lost that urge to consistently relate to injustice as an assault on democracy. Be it plight of migrants or minorities, their failure to strike wider chord tells truths about us.

Amid pandemic, politics needs to resume in its core sense — politicians, parties need to connect with people
Sat, May 23, 2020

In Opposition, non-BJP parties have been lazy in not responding politically at all. It took two full months for the UPA and some other non-BJP parties even to think of talking formally to each other.

Minimise democracy, maximise interfaith distance, maintain aloofness from poor — may be the new normal
Wed, Apr 22, 2020

Equally disturbingly, the lockdown has ensured that the class-chasm would become more real, more sharp and yet politically infructuous. The overwhelming support that the lockdown has received among India’s middle classes is noteworthy not just because of the gullibility of that class but also because of its complete lack of social connection to anything beyond itself.

An eerie quiet: At the stroke of midnight on March 24, India suspended ‘politics’
Wed, Apr 01, 2020

We should brace ourselves not only for the deep impact the coronavirus crisis will have on routine lives and the economy; this crisis will also leave its imprint on the idea of the public and our politics.