India’s gaffe at Samarkand

Tuesday, 20 September 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) met with Russian President Vladimir Putin at Samarkand, Uzbekistan, September 16, 2022

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at Samarkand on September 16 after the SCO Summit turned into a media scandal. The Western media zeroed in on six words culled out of context in the PM’s opening remarks — “today’s era is not of war” —  to triumphantly proclaim that India is finally distancing itself from Russia on Ukraine issue, as the US and European leaders have been incessantly demanding.

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Big picture of disengagement in Ladakh

Saturday, 10 September 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

The Ministry of External Affairs has done the right thing by explaining its taciturn press release on Thursday in a single sentence regarding the disengagement of troops in the area of Gogra-Hotsprings along the LAC in the Western Sector of India-China border areas.

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Timely assertion of India’s strategic autonomy

Friday, 9 September 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Russian President Vladimir Putin (3rd from right) greets Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) at Vladivostok, September 5, 2019

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s address at the plenary sessions of the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) at Vladivostok has been a regular feature of the annual event since 2019. But this year’s address on Wednesday was invested with added significance as the PM was speaking for the first time on India-Russia relationship after Moscow’s special military operation in Ukraine began in February.

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India’s energy diplomacy blossoms, finally

Wednesday, 7 September 2022 — Indian Punchline

M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Indian Oil Corporation’s Numaligarh Refinery, Assam (File photo)

To be sure, energy security has surged as the key to a country’s strategic autonomy and independence, as world events testify, currently within the matrix of “food-fertiliser-fuel” sufficiency where the global supply chains are disrupted. Europe’s missteps on this front, upon the advice of the US to atrophy and sever the continent’s seven decades-long economic links with Russia, is proving to be a Himalayan blunder that threatens the western economies with recession and brewing political turmoil.

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100 years of Russian gas for India

M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Yamal LNG Project in Siberia, Russia (File photo)

India is taking baby steps toward green energy. Two of India’s biggest business houses are spearheading it — Adani and Ambani groups. India has made several ambitious commitments at the Glasgow climate summit and two key pledges were that India’s non-fossil energy capacity will reach 500 GW by 2030 and the country will transition to net zero emissions by 2070. Sceptics doubt whether such timelines are realistic.

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Indian Workers Defend Their Steel with Their Lives: The Thirty-Fourth Newsletter (2022)

Thursday, 25 August 2022 — The Tricontinental

20220818 D55 Web Feature

Dear friends,

Greetings from the desk of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research.

The long and distant epoch of pre-history, dated to the time before the start of the Common Era, is conventionally divided into three periods: the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, and the Iron Age. Subsequently, in the era of written history, we generally have not relied upon specific metals or minerals to define our periods. Too many metals and minerals, harnessed by new production techniques and new labour patterns, have contributed to our immense capacity to generate large surpluses. There is the Age of Industry but not, for instance, the Age of Steel, the core metal of our period.

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When People Want Housing in India, They Build It: The Thirty-Third Newsletter (2022)

Thursday, 18 August 2022 — The Tricontinental

Communist Party of India Marxist protest in Khila Warangal 10 May 2022Communist Party of India (Marxist) protest in Khila Warangal, 10 May 2022.

Dear friends,

Greetings from the desk of Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research.

It all started with a survey. In April 2022, members of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), or CPI(M), went door to door in the town of Warangal in Telangana state. The party was already aware of challenges in the community but wanted to collect data before working on a plan of action. Thirty-five teams of three to four CPI(M) members and supporters went to 45,000 homes and learned how people were suffering from a range of issues, such as the lack of pensions and subsidised food. Many expressed anxieties around the absence of permanent housing, with a third saying that they were not homeowners and could not pay their rents. The government had promised to build two-bedroom apartments for the poor, but these promises evaporated. With inflation eating into their meagre incomes and serious unemployment due to the collapse of the local bidi (cigarette) industry, desperation marked the people the communists met.

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US-NATO Intent upon Boycotting Russia-India Relations

Friday, 29 July 2022 — Global Research – InfoBrics 28 July 2022

By Lucas Leiroz de Almeida

The US seems once again interested in boycotting good relations between Russia and India. Congressmen in Washington are proposing that New Delhi be included in the NATO-Plus group, guaranteeing a series of privileges in military cooperation. Obviously, the military ties between both countries are not recent, but this type of maneuver precisely at the current moment indicates the concern on the part of the US with the rapprochement between India and Russia.

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Biden’s I2U2 summit diminishes India

Friday, 15 July 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

US forms a West Asian Quad with Israel, India and UAE, which held its first summit meeting in virtual setting on July 14, 2022 coinciding with President Biden’s first regional tour of West Asia.

India’s involvement with US President Joe Biden’s quixotic venture called “I2-U2 Summit” is bizarre, to put it mildly. India’s excellent relations with Israel and the UAE are best pursued on the highly successful bilateral tracks instead of complicating them with the Abraham Accords or the US’ big power rivalry with Russia and China for regional influence in the Middle East — leave alone partaking of the wasteful American and Israeli obsession of “Iranophobia”.

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India to boost Sakhalin-1 oil output

Sunday, 10 July 2022 — Indian Punchline

Sakhalin-1 oil and gas development project is located off the coast of Sakhalin Island in the Russian Far East (File photo)

After Sakhalin-2, Moscow also plans to nationalise Sakhalin-1 oil and gas development project by ousting US and Japanese shareholders. But Moscow will make an exception for India so that OVL which holds 20% stake will remain & continue to work. Moscow grapevine is that while Rosneft will continue to hold controlling share, more Indian companies may be inducted to replace US & Japan and thereby also ensure a sales market in India.

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India, BRICS in cold war conditions

Saturday, 2 July 2022 — Indian Punchline

The phone conversation on Friday between Prime Minister Modi and Russian President Putin conveyed a big signal, coming on the morrow of the release of the new Strategic Concept by NATO which called Russia the alliance’s “most significant and direct threat.” The readouts from Moscow and New Delhi both highlighted the two leaderships’ determination to carry forward the momentum of economic cooperation despite the western sanctions against Russia. (here and here)

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St. Petersburg sets the stage for the War of Economic Corridors

Saturday, 18 June 2022 — The Cradle

In St. Petersburg, the world’s new powers gather to upend the US-concocted “rules-based order” and reconnect the globe their way
https://media.thecradle.co/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/IMG-20220618-WA0016.jpgAt St. Petersburg on Friday, backers of multipolarity pushed forward integration of their networks * Photo Credit: The Cradle

The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum  has been configured for years now as absolutely essential to understand the evolving dynamics and the trials and tribulations of Eurasia integration.

St. Petersburg in 2022 is even more crucial as it directly connects to three simultaneous developments I had previously outlined, in no particular order:

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Why India must decouple from I2U2

Friday, 17 June 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Foreign Ministers of India, Israel, UAE, US (clockwise) held a videoconference in October 2021 to launch a ‘Quad’ for West Asia

Indian diplomacy is descending from the sublime to the absurd. Such wild swings signal rank opportunism. These are extraordinary times when to be smart is equated as being opportunistic.

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IPEF will be a hard sell in Indo-Pacific

Tuesday, 24 May 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

From L-R: Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, US President Joe Biden, and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the launch of Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity at Izumi Garden Gallery in Tokyo on May 23, 2022

A new economic bloc comprising twelve countries of the Indo-Pacific region and the United States was unveiled on Monday in Tokyo on the sidelines of President Joe Biden’s visit. Christened as the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF), it is conceived as the economic correlative of the US Indo-Pacific Strategy.

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India, Germany cogitate on Ukraine

Tuesday, 3 May 2022 — Indian Punchline

by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

Germany to send fifty Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine to fight Russia

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s short visit to Germany pegged on the Indian-German Intergovernmental Commission meeting in Berlin on Monday inevitably came to focus on the Ukraine crisis. The western media would have loved to grill Modi on India’s reluctance to criticise Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine. But German hosts thoughtfully skipped the customary Q&A after the joint appearance of Modi and Chancellor Olaf Scholz before the press.

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India’s dilemma over West vs. Russia

Wednesday, 6 April 2022 — Indian Punchline

The information war over alleged killings in the town of Bucha near Kyiv underscores the high stakes in smearing the Russian operation in Ukraine. Pentagon has distanced itself saying it has no independent  information.

There is a notion among some mainstream Indian strategic analysts, including some who held top positions in the security establishment in past regimes that what is unfolding in Ukraine is quintessentially “a war between Europeans over the European security order.”

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India, US have different priorities

Wednesday, 23 March 2022 — Indian Punchline

M. K. BHADRAKUMAR

The cruelty and cynical complacency with which the Biden Administration and the EU conduct their foreign polices is absolutely stunning. And, mind you, all this is happening in the name of “democratic values” and “international law”!
Prime Minister Modi and President Biden (File photo) 

An extraordinary week has passed for the Modi government’s dalliance with the Quad. Call it a defining moment, a turning point or even an inflection point — it has elements of all three.

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India Should Quit Quad Now!

Monday, 14 March 2022 — Indian Punchline

Prime Minister Modi chaired a meeting of Cabinet Committee on Security and top officials, New Delhi, March 13, 2022  

Hedging between superpowers — United States, Russia and China — was never the smart thing to do. India should have known that the contradictions are simply irreconcilable.

This is a moment of truth, therefore, as the US unsheathes the sword to bleed and dismember Russia, and gives an ultimatum to China to stay out of it.

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Just Beyond the Pale

Sunday, 13 March 2022 – The New Dark Age

By Supratim Barman

In a Globalised World, when we see images of the conflict that is currently occurring in Ukraine on our News Feeds, Whatsapp Groups, Telegram Twitter and Instagram; as well as of course on our TeleVision sets; we tend to lose sight of the human element and how close it could have been us instead. We sit far away and analyse it, show our support for the Corporation side by posting stickers and flags on our social media profiles and we feel good; as if we have done something worthwhile with our day. As if we have somehow “helped”.

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