Tuesday, July 27

Engaging Burma

The Burmese leader Than Shwe is on a five day visit to India. My take on it at the FPA.

"The Indian Prime Minister should take this opportunity to extend support and guidance in conducting free and fair elections in Burma. As the largest and successful democracy in the region, India has the necessary experience and standing to do so. India could offer direct assistance/guidance in voter registration, ensuring security at voting booths, use of electronic voting machines, etc. It could also offer to be an external observer during the election process to oversee that the elections are held in a democratic, free and fair manner. It would help Burma’s image if it allows external observers into the process. Such constructive contribution by India to the democratic process would be of greater value than merely opposing the Burmese junta on principals."

Read the rest of the post here.

Thursday, July 15

The Indian Rupee gets a new symbol

The Indian Rupee now has its unique symbol - a confluence of the Roman ‘R’ and Indian (Devanagari script) ‘Ra’. The symbol was finalized yesterday by an Union Cabinet Committee.

Uday Kumar, the designer of the symbol explains the symbol, “My design is based on the Tricolour with two lines at the top and white space in between. I wanted the symbol for the Rupee to represent the Indian flag. It is a perfect blend of Indian and Roman letters: a capital ‘R’, and Devnagari ‘Ra’, which represent rupiya, to appeal to international and Indian audiences. After working onthe design for few months, I shortlisted eight to 10 designs and then refined them further till I got this one.”

My latest post on the Indian Rupee symbol at FPA India blog here.

Friday, July 9

A mindset change to stop honor killings

"As India tries to fly high with its nuclear deals, claims to an UNSC permanent seat, ~8% growth rate, a sense of moral uprightness in dealing with Pakistan, condemning human rights abuses across the globe etc. such disgraceful events will only deal a blow to its international image. ‘Honor killings’ are murders, human right abuses, atrocities against women, denial of individual’s freedom of choice, and a display of the failure of the law and order situation in the country. India cannot claim to be a democracy, one of the biggest at that, if it cannot guarantee its citizen their fundamental rights to live on their own terms..."

My latest post on honor killings at the FPA India blog.