Two things need to be said about this week’s Cabinet reshuffle. The first is that it was an exercise in spectacularly inept political timing. It is bizarre to shift the country’s home minister at a time when parts of Assam are still in flames and to replace him with a man who knows nothing about that situation and has never before held this portfolio. Read more

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Why do you suppose Prime Minister Manmohan Singh picked this time to launch a new initiative to repair ties with Pakistan? Speaking to reporters at the SAARC Summit in the Maldives, the Foreign Secretary said that the Prime Minister’s tacit agreement to resume the composite dialogue (halted after the 26/11 attacks) came after an emotional appeal from Yusuf Raza Gilani, the Prime Minister of Pakistan. Read more

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Before we go much further, let me make one thing clear: I have no intention of passing judgement on the rights and wrongs of the Kiran Bedi saga. Frankly, it seems like an issue where two opposing positions can seem equally strong. Read more

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The attack on Prashant Bhushan, apparently because of his support for a plebiscite in Kashmir, shows up some of the fault-lines within the Anna Hazare movement. Read more

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The Union Cabinet decided on Monday to put off approving a hike in the salaries of MPs and ministers. Read more

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