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Road to growth: NDA beats UPA, and in less time - Surya Sarathi Ray, Financial Express
While its ambitious national highway (NH) construction targets have been hard to reach, the NDA government has clearly outdone the previous UPA dispensation when it comes to expanding the country’s national highway network. Four-and-a-half years into its tenure, the NDA has built 33,361-km of highways, a trifle more than what UPA did in the seven years between FY-08 and FY14 (see chart). Of course, pure-play public private partnership (PPP) ventures, which had come to a grinding halt... Read Full Article››
A politician of principles - M Venkaiah Naidu, Pioneer
It is a truism that occasion produces the leader. One of its telling examples would be Dr Syama Prasad Mukherjee (1901-1953), independent India’s first Minister of Industry and Supply and founder of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh in 1951. His 118th birth anniversary is being observed today (July 6). A qualified barrister by training, his passion was education, academics and Indian culture. A Vice-Chancellor of the Calcutta University at a mere 33 years — the youngest ever in India...
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India incredibly Modi-fied - Navin Upadhyay, Pioneer
Modi hai to mumkin hai. The evocative tagline of the BJP campaign aptly reflects the party’s massive victory in the Lok Sabha polls. The brand ‘Modi’ has outshone every competitor, be it regional satraps or Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who found few takers for his “chowkidar chor hai” jibe at the PM. The result shows the BJP has emerged as a pan-India force as the saffron party made big inroad into the strongly protected fortresses...
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Lessons from a massacre - M Venkaiah Naidu, Pioneer
Today marks the 100th anniversary of one the goriest episodes in human history and the darkest chapter of the British rule in India when an unarmed peaceful gathering of thousands of people was fired upon at Jallianwala Bagh on the instructions of General Reginald Dyer, leaving several hundreds dead and many more wounded. It was Baisakhi on April 13, 1919, and the thousands who assembled, including children and women at Jallianwala Bagh, were apparently unaware...
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‘BJP will win more seats than in 2014,’ says PM Modi - Shashi Shekhar, Hindustan Times
It had been a very satisfactory and extremely good five years. My experience in these five years boosted my belief that there is no reason why India should remain in the category of developing countries. We have all the capabilities to be a developed country. When I came here, the situation was much worse than what I thought it would be. It was a terrible situation. I was new to this place and I also had to understand issues but as we started taking decisions, several worrying things came up.
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‘Confident’ Modi all set for second term - Swapan Dasgupta, Pioneer
No Indian election, at least in these days of intensely competitive politics, is ever really won until the last vote is counted. Yet it is commentary on the state of play, some two weeks before the first round of voting, that some Opposition leaders are actually claiming that this will be last democratic election in India in the event Prime Minister Narendra Modi is re-elected to power. The suggestion is, needless to say, quite preposterous. It implies that India’s democratic Constitution is on the verge of being junked.
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Death of an icon - Pioneer
Usually when a high-profile politician passes away, particularly in these times of over-sharing on social media, some people tend to reflect on the negative aspects of the person in assessing his legacy. Even if everyone might not share these anecdotes publicly, often gossip and innuendo make it to private conversations, particularly among reporters, who tailed that politician as part of their jobs. Manohar Parrikar, however, was not that kind of politician.
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Does Priyanka have sanjeevini? - Kalyani Shankar, Pioneer
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has taken charge as Congress General Secretary responsible for eastern Uttar Pradesh last week. The state is not new to her as she has campaigned earlier also in some parts apart from looking after her mother Sonia Gandhi’s constituency Rae Bareilly and her brother Rahul Gandhi’s stronghold Amethi for years. Home to 80 Lok Sabha seats, UP sends the highest number of lawmakers to Parliament, making it a key electoral battleground.
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Test of a United India - Amitabh Shukla, Pioneer
As the Lok Sabha election gets tantalisingly close, the season of mahagathbandhan or a grand alliance has started in right earnest. So has flexing of political muscles by what can loosely be called as the anti-Bharatiya Janata Party (anti-BJP) — a conglomeration of diverse regional parties, united by a single agenda of removing the Modi-Shah duo from national politics in the Lok Sabha election. Of course, BJP rebel and now architect of the “Save Democracy” movement Yashwant Sinha adroitly...
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Looking ahead without fear - Sandhya Jain, Pioneer
A prime ministerial interview is an occasion for the incumbent to address his constituents, not an opportunity for critics to extract their pound of flesh. In an interview to news agency, ANI, Narendra Modi tackled a range of issues with finesse. Deflecting charges of corruption in the Rafale deal, Modi made the subtle distinction that the allegations were not against him, but his Government: “If there is any allegation against me personally, let them dig who gave what, when and where and to whom”.
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When terror came to the House - M Venkaiah Naidu, Indian Express
As we mark the supreme sacrifice by our security personnel and others in the diabolical attack on this day 17 years ago on the Indian Parliament, the temple of our vibrant democracy and the symbol of people’s aspirations, we not only have to strengthen our resolve to make every inch of our motherland a safer place, we also need to step up our diplomatic efforts to combat the ever-growing global menace of terrorism. We have to build stronger coalitions against this scourge that is afflicting humanity.
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