I hope this letter helps you regain your confidence and composure after the last few difficult days. I also hope that through this letter, you are a little better-informed about how others view Pakistan and its terror exports and the need to secure our people.
The Uttar Pradesh election is a cornucopia of colours, slogans and events - with citizens across various regions voting with gusto. What it seems to be missing is data-based focus on Uttar Pradesh's actual condition, one which remains chronic
"Words matter", as a wiser and older George W. Bush has advised President Trump. Yes, they do here in India as much as in the US. Remember "Pappu" and "Feku"? Such labels stick. However, they are not half as problematic as invisible half-words and powerfully emotive discourse.
There has been a worrisome tendency over the last two years of Delhi-based media using highly local events, mostly in Delhi, to broad-brush the entire country as religiously intolerant; increasingly intolerant; as Freedom of Expression (FOE) and our rights being under attack; becoming increasingly communal; becoming fascist, etc. The good citizens ...
Tell a lie often enough and it will become the truth. Tell Virendra Sehwag that a couple of his tweets are funny, he forgets there is a fine line between humour and offence. The joke is on the former opener, because while his double centuries were highly entertaining, his 'bat mein hain dum' tweet is pure crass.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has revived through his budget speech a proposal first made in the mid-90s, and then in the early 2000s, that our public sector undertakings in the oil and gas sector be merged into one giant oil behemoth whose market value would top $100 billion, close to that of Exxon.
On the main arterial road in Ayodhya, Santosh Bhargava lifted a kerosene stove he had repaired and came forward to hand it to a customer. His spine bent after 83 years of a life of struggle in the temple town. I had met him several times from the start of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement in the late 80s - till the peak 90s. He used to repair harmoniums...
Following the municipal elections in Maharashtra, particularly in Mumbai, I've been struck by the cynicism and apathy in the media and even among politicians. They appear convinced that our cities are irredeemable and nothing can be done to rescue them.
Last spring, when I heard Donald Trump say that Caitlyn Jenner could use whatever bathroom she wanted at Trump Tower, I breathed a sigh of relief. There weren't many things Trump and I agreed on, but this was one. Surely, I hoped, if he became president, he would extend the same courtesy to my 7-year-old daughter, Henry.
"In a war, it is not possible to vacillate or to be weak or to play the role of Hamlet. One has to be really ruthless if the need arises. I am ruthless for what I think. The difficulty is I move. These people remain static...Circumstances, experiences challenge me and change me. I am no longer the same person."