Editorial

Supreme Court: Justice Denied

THE crisis that has gripped the Supreme Court in recent times has been further aggravated by the way in which the Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi and the Supreme Court have handled the accusation of sexual harassment leveled against the CJI himself in a written complaint made by a former Supreme Court employee, copies of which were given to all members of the Court. As a consequence, every effort should have been made to ensure complete transparency in the matter. But this was precisely what was not done.

Protect Integrity of Election Commission

THE Election Commission performs a vital role in the parliamentary democratic system in India.  The Commission is the body authorised by the Constitution to conduct free and fair elections.  Article 324 (1) of the Constitution empowers the Commission with: “The superintendence, direction and control of the preparation of the electoral rolls for, and the conduct of, all elections to Parliament and to the Legislature of every state...”. 

A Malign Symbol

PRAGYA Singh Thakur’s nomination as the BJP candidate from Bhopal constituency marks a significant and ominous moment in the 17th Lok Sabha election. This decision of the BJP is a declaration of its real platform for this election – an unapologetic hardline Hindutva with all its negative implications. 

Scrap Electoral Bonds Now

THE electoral bonds scheme which came into effect in March 2018 is a brazen and opaque method to funnel corporate funds, kickbacks and black money into the ruling party’s coffers.

That is why the CPI(M) challenged the scheme and the amendments made in the relevant laws in the Supreme Court. The Association for Democratic Reforms also petitioned the Court to strike down the scheme. The CPI(M) was the only party to declare that it will not accept electoral  bonds.

No Level Playing Field

THE Modi government has enlisted one more government agency illegally to serve its partisan political purpose during the elections. The Income Tax department has been unleashed on opposition political parties and their leaders. The last fortnight has seen a series of raids by IT authorities on leaders of political parties, ministers in non-BJP state governments, businessmen associated with these parties and key aides of chief ministers and ministers in non-BJP state governments.

Wrong Turn in Wayanad

BY deciding to contest a second seat from Wayanad constituency in Kerala, the Congress president Rahul Gandhi has taken a wrong turn.  The argument set out by senior Congress leaders, while making this announcement, was that it is important that the Congress president fight from the South also. They also stated that the BJP is trying to create a communal divide in the southern states too. 

Shameful Verdict on Hindutva Terror

THE acquittal of Aseemanand (real name Naba Kumar Sarkar) and three others in the Samjhauta train blast case is a shameful reminder that the criminal justice system in India is incapable of bringing terrorists of the extremist Hindutva variety to justice for their crimes.

Between 2006 and 2008, there were six terrorist incidents perpetrated by a network of extreme Hindutva groups.  Aseemanand, Pragya Thakur and Lt. Colonel Shrikant Purohit were the prominent conspirators amongst them.

US Dictating to India

HISTORY is repeating itself with the United States dictating whom India should buy oil from. The US had forced India to drastically reduce buying oil from Iran after it imposed unilateral sanctions on Iranian oil trade last year.  Now, the US is back to the business of coercing India to stop buying oil from Venezuela on whom it has imposed illegal sanctions.
 

Lok Sabha Election: A Crucial Battle

THE 17th Lok Sabha election, the notification for which has been issued, is going to be the most consequential election in the history of independent India.  Much is at stake.  This election will have a bearing on the future of the secular-democratic Republic as enshrined in the Constitution.

Five years of Modi rule have already weakened and eroded the basic principles on which the Constitution rests. An authoritarian Hindutva State looms ahead if the BJP succeeds in coming back to power.

Farm Income Deflation the Norm Under Modi Govt

THE promise of the Modi government to double farm incomes by 2022 seems to be a cruel joke on farmers who are suffering the reverse - a steady decline in farm incomes. The Central Statistics Office has added credence to the allegations of the peasantry that the last five years have seen continuously low incomes. CSO figures show that farm income growth crashed to the lowest in 14 years in the last quarter of 2018 (October-December).

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