Changing geopolitical scene in Indo-Pacific: Vietnam-Australia & Vietnam-India partnership


The geo-political scene in the Indo-Pacific region is changing rapidly in over the last couple of years. The driving force behind these changes is the rise of China, together with its assertiveness on territorial issues, particularly its claim on most parts of South China Sea in the midst of rival claims from some other countries of the region, namely Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and, of course Taiwan that claims everything that mainland China does.
The strengthening of Vietnam-Australia relations and India-Australia relations together offers an alternative narrative to China’s view of the regional order.

India-France ties enter a new era with logistics and defence pacts


India and France have elevated their multi-pronged strategic partnership to a new level by signing a landmark logistics pact between their armed forces and unveiled a joint strategic vision for the Indian Ocean region, which is set to usher in a phase 2.0 in their blossoming relationship.
The wide-ranging talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron in New Delhi on March 10 culminated in a soaring vision of next steps in India-France strategic partnership, which was reinforced by the signing of 14 pacts in critical areas such as defence, nuclear energy and infrastructure.

With China watching, India, Vietnam bolster Indo-Pacific connect, defence ties


Amid the continuing volatility around South China Sea and China’s growing clout, India and Vietnam have decided to deepen their coordination in the Indo-Pacific region and bolster their defence ties to shape an inclusive regional architecture.
Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang’s March 2-4 visit to India and his talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi have expanded the scope of comprehensive strategic partnership between India and Vietnam, and underscored the pivotal role of India-Vietnam relations in the mutating regional landscape. Two visits by Vietnam’s prime minister and president to India within weeks of each other have cemented Hanoi’s role as a pivot in New Delhi’s Act East policy.


Xi Sets China on a New Long March


In Chinese tradition, dynastic bloodline has never been the criterion to determine the line of succession. It is the capable ministers and victorious generals who⋅⋅⋅

AIIB $1.5 billion loan boosts India’s infrastructure plan


In a move that could help bridge India’s infrastructural gap, the Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank (AIIB) has approved $1.5 billion in loans to India for a host of infrastructure-based projects in 2018. While the loan will be utilized for the development of energy, roads and urban centres, there will be a special focus will be on enhancing India’s renewable energy capacity.
With 7.74 per cent equity share in the multilateral development bank, India is only second to China which holds 29.9 per cent. Operating from 2016, the 84-member bank, which was initiated by China, is focussed on supporting infrastructural development across the Asia-Pacific region.

Trudeau’s ongoing tour raises questions regarding India’s response


The less-than-warm welcome extended to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who is on a week-long visit to India, has already raised speculations about New Delhi cold-shouldering the Canadian leader over the Khalistani separatist issue.
Observers noted that there was no official tweet from either Prime Minister Modi or External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj welcoming Mr Trudeau to India and neither did Mr Modi accompany the Canadian leader on his visit to Gujarat. The Indian government’s displeasure with Canada’s support to pro-Khalistani activities in recent years is well known.  Ahead of the visit to India, two of Trudeau’s cabinet ministers accompanying him had clarified that they did not sympathise with the demand of a separate Khalistan.
With an eye on expanding India-Canada business partnership, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be meeting top business leaders today in Mumbai, the third city that he is visiting after Agra and Ahmedabad. Apart from participating in a women business leaders’ roundtable discussion and a film industry event, he is also scheduled to meet with Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.

The Quote Hanger

Assuming the chairmanship of ASEAN isn't going to do anything about improving the lives of people.   Aung San Suu Kyi

In Conversation

Vietnam envoy pitches for real code of conduct in South China Sea (Interview)


The Special Commemorative Summit is poised to open a new chapter in the history of India-ASEAN relations. With India and ASEAN emerging as the fastest growing region in the world, there are enormous possibilities for expanding and diversifying this mutually energising relationship across the spectrum.
In this interview with Manish Chand, Editor-in-Chief, India and World, Vietnam’s Ambassador to India Ton Sinh Thanh argues that given India’s close historical and cultural connections and its growing economy, India should play a bigger role in the extended Indo-Pacific region. To fructify this huge potential, enhancing connectivity will be a potential game-changer in taking India-ASEAN strategic partnership to new heights.
Amid the churn in the South China Sea, the Vietnamese envoy also pitches for a real and abiding enforceable code of conduct and argues that the sea of Southeast Asia is an open sea of all countries, including India.

It’s time for India to play a bigger role in ASEAN : Indonesia envoy


Building on their growing economy and a shared vision of a pluralistic and inclusive Asia, India and Indonesia are poised to chart new frontiers in their multi-faceted partnership. In this wide-ranging interview with Manish Chand, Editor-in-Chief of India and World magazine and India Writes Network, Indonesia’s Ambassador to India Sidharto R. Suryodipuro outlines core values that bind India and ASEAN and maps a robustly optimistic trajectory of India-Indonesia partnership.

(Excerpts from the interview)
Q) India is hosting Special Commemorative Summit, where all the ASEAN leaders are going to be present and they are also the guest of honour at the Republic Day Parade. It is indeed a unique moment in India- ASEAN relations. How do you look at the importance of the summit and the way ahead?
A) We will be celebrating 25 years of the India-ASEAN dialogue relationship and the changes that have taken place. We will not only be celebrating the adding of years, but also the changes that have taken place in Southeast Asia and India. Twenty-five years ago, the India-ASEAN relationship was sectoral, now it has been upgraded to comprehensive strategic partnership. India has changed its “Look East” policy to an “Act East” policy. The commemorative summit would be an opportunity to add momentum to this growing relationship. It is an opportunity for India to further bolster its policy and also for ASEAN to do the same. It will also be an opportunity for India and ASEAN to address the changes that are happening in the world.

Post-BRICS, India, China think anew: Manish Chand


In an interview to AnchalAnand of News X, Manish Chand, Editor-in-Chief of India and World and India Writes Network, decodes the Xiamen Declaration at the BRICS summit for the first time targets terror outfits in Pakistan, forcing China to toe India’s line on the terror issue.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has described his Bharatiya Janata Party’s stunning victory in assembly elections in India’s biggest state Uttar Pradesh as historic and underlined


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has described his Bharatiya Janata Party’s stunning victory in assembly elections in India’s biggest state Uttar ...

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Basking in the glory of astounding electoral victory in India’s largest state of Uttar Pradesh, the head of India’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party Amit


Basking in the glory of astounding electoral victory in India’s largest state of Uttar Pradesh, the head of India’s Hindu ...

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It’s set to be a special ‘Holi’ for India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party he leads. Saffron is the reigning colour as wild celebrations erupted outside the BJP’s national headquarters in Delhi and UP’s capital city of Lucknow. Swamped by fervour of this huge victory, party activists splashed a rainbow of colours, distributed sweets and set off crackers.


It’s set to be a special ‘Holi’ for India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party he leads. ...

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In a spectacular saffron sweep, the Bharatiya Janata Party is heading for a landslide victory in assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, India’s largest state and the epicentre of the country’s politics.


In a spectacular saffron sweep, the Bharatiya Janata Party is heading for a landslide victory in assembly elections in Uttar ...

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Exit polls broadcast by Indian television channels have projected India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi


Exit polls broadcast by Indian television channels have projected India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi

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What they Say

France should be the best partner for India : Macron


“France should be the best partner for India, especially in Europe, the entry point for Europe ” French President Macron,who arrived  on a four-day visit⋅⋅⋅

Will feel proud to tell success story of 1.25 bn Indians in Davos: Modi


” Will feel proud to tell success story of 1.25 bn Indians in Davos ” Prime Minister Narendra Modi will leave for Davos on Monday⋅⋅⋅

The Indian diaspora has climbed to appreciable heights in almost all the countries : Kovind

“The Indian diaspora has climbed to appreciable heights in almost all the countries where it has found a home. It has contributed to the well-being⋅⋅⋅


Indian economy to grow 7-7.5%: Economic Survey


Ahead of the Union budget, the Economic Survey report for the fiscal year 2017-18 tabled by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley projected a robustly optimistic picture⋅⋅⋅

India jumps 30 places on ease of doing business global ranking; Modi hails it as historic


In a major boost to the government which has come under severe criticism on its economic policies lately, India has jumped 30 places to reach⋅⋅⋅


3 keys for unlocking India-China economic ties: New Steps, New Horizons


President Xi’s report pointed out the right direction for developing China-India economic and trade relationship. In the future, following the principles of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, we will use three “keys” to unlock the potential of balanced and mutually beneficial China- India economic and trade cooperation in the “new era”.
With the guidance of our leaders and the guiding principles of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, India-China economic and trade cooperation will bring real benefits to our governments, business communities and ordinary people. It will become the bedrock and anchor of our bilateral relationship. With the development of this relationship, the day when “China and India speak in one voice, and the world listens” will come soon.

Arunachal row shadows India-China relations


Ahead of the visit by China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi to India, China has renewed its claims over Arunachal Pradesh. The visits by Indian leaders to Arunachal Pradesh, which is claimed in entirety by Beijing, has consistently elicited protests from China, and this time it was not different when President Ram Nath Kovind visited India’s easternmost state.

Africa Rising

Curtain falls on Mugabe’s rule: Rejoicing & concern


Zimbabwe’s long-awaited moment of celebration has finally arrived with the 93-year-old strongman Robert Mugabe announcing his resignation after a reign of 37 years. On November 21 his letter, wherein he expressed his decision to step down from power to allow a peaceful leadership change, was read out by the speaker of the Zimbabwean parliament, Jacob Mudenda. With his announcement, Mr Mugabe has saved himself from the ordeal of an impeachment hearing that had been initiated against him.

CII-EXIM Bank conclave in Kampala: India eyes East Africa opportunity


India is set to accelerate its economic engagement with East Africa, the fastest growing region in the African continent and home to a large Indian diaspora, at a regional business conclave in Kampala.
The two-day India-East Africa business conclave, organised by Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and EXIM Bank, will be inaugurated by Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni in the Ugandan capital on November 20. India’s Commerce Secretary Rita Teotia is leading the high-profile Indian delegation, which includes top investors in Africa like Shobana Kamineni, president, CII and Sanjay Kirloskar, CMD, Kirloskar Brothers Limited. Many ministers from East African countries will be participating in the conclave.

With OBOR on mind, India brands Asia-Africa Growth Corridor: People-centric & consultative


Touted as an alternative and counterpoint to China’s One Belt, One Road project, the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor (AAGC) is set to be accelerated in days to come, with India signalling its intention to fast-track this transformational connective project that will encompass the two emerging growth poles in the world.

Culture / Books / Ideas


People of the Pacific Pearl: Frames that capture the vibrant world of Lima


The Art Gallery of the Embassy of Peru in India recently came alive with frames capturing the happening life of 19th century Lima, the Peruvian capital. Organized jointly by the Embassy and the Delhi Photographic Club, the Photo exhibition titled “Retratos de Lima” (Portraits of Lima) showcases selections from the rich archives of Eugéne Courret, a French photographer who settled in the Latin American city in 1860 and documented the teeming life of a busy metropolis through his lens.

International Day of Girl Child: Long way to go for India


In a landmark verdict on October 11, upholding the rights of over 20 million child brides of India, the Supreme Court ruled that sex with a minor wife, in the age group of 15 to 18, would be considered as rape and will be treated as a criminal offence. The court order came even as India along with the rest of the world commemorated the International Girl Child Day around the theme of ‘The Power of the Adolescent Girl: Vision for 2030’ to celebrate and empower girl children around the world.

According to a United Nations Population Fund report last year, India accounts for a third of the world’s child brides. About 47 per cent of girls in India are married before they turn 18. Though the trend of child marriages has been declining, India still has a long way to go to eradicate the menace completely. The latest Supreme Court order is a major milestone towards achieving that goal.

As part of United Nation’s international day to create greater awareness on the issues impacting girl children around the world and to promote steps for their empowerment, several countries have undertaken major programmes to highlight and support girl children and to end gender discrimination.

Cultural diplomacy poised for a bigger role, to promote Brand India: ICCR chief Amarendra Khatua


Politics divides, culture connects. In Shanghai, a pact was signed between India and China to recreate Raj Kapoor’s 1951 classic Awaara into a contemporary Chinese opera.
Amarendra Khatua, the new director-general of Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), who was in Shanghai to deliver the keynote address at the 18th China Shanghai International Arts Festival (CSIAF), struck an upbeat note on long-standing civilisational ties and promoting cultural exchanges in Tier-II and Tier-III cities in India and China. The joint theatrical remake of Awaara, which remains the most popular Indian movie in China, hints at more such collaborative cultural tie-ups India is set to pursue in days to come.
“Cultural diplomacy is poised to play a bigger role in India’s foreign policy calculus in days and months to come and promote Brand India,” said Khatua, a veteran diplomat who is also famous as an accomplished poet who writes and translates in English, Hindi and other Indian languages.


Nobel moment for Kazuo Ishiguro, digger of inner truths


  It’s a time of rejoicing and celebrations for all Kazuo Ishiguro fans, and those who relish his uncanny talent for excavating abyss beneath the⋅⋅⋅

Isthmus of Time: Poems by Anshuman Gaur


An Anthem for the Fallen Once the storm has passed Once the dust has settled down Who remembers the blood-sworn vow? The cloud serpent Again,⋅⋅⋅

Booker glory beckons Amitav Ghosh


The Booker glory beckons Indian novelist and essayist Amitav Ghosh yet again. Having narrowly missed the Anglophone world’s most coveted literary honour in 2008, the⋅⋅⋅

Why Write?

Mickey Spillane: The older, the better


If you’re a singer you lose your voice. A baseball player loses his arm. A writer gets more knowledge, and if he’s good, the older⋅⋅⋅

Samuel Johnson: Reading and making of a book


The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make⋅⋅⋅

Eudora Welty: Taking Life as it Exists


“The writing of a novel is taking life as it already exists, not to report it but to make an object, toward the end that⋅⋅⋅


Nevada bets on India, to open tourism office soon

Nevada tourism office-India

Nevada, the US’ western state known for casinos and picturesque landscape, is betting big on luring more tourists from India. Nevada Lt Governor Thomas Hutchinson⋅⋅⋅

Border-crossing: Supper in Sweden, Dinner in Denmark

Arial photo of the bridge with ferry passing under

For those of us living in India, crossing over casually is a distant dream. Even though India and Pakistan were one over six decades ago,⋅⋅⋅

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