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India’s defeat in the Cairn retrospective tax arbitration, after similar humiliation against Vodafone, underlines that the retrospective taxation amendment must go. Much energy, reputation, money and goodwill have been wasted on this self-inflicted atrocity. We hope the Modi government wouldn’t drag on. An economic power needs a predictable, smooth tax regime.

J&K poll results show people want development. Parties must not make them hostage to politics

J&K’s DDC poll outcome is a victory for all, no matter the numbers. People have sent out an unequivocal message: Development is their main concern and they’re hopeful about the future. The Centre and Kashmiri parties must focus on fulfilling their demands, not make them hostage to contentious political issues.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. New York Times (NYT) was invited by Modi government along with some other international media members to to visit Kashmir on a tightly controlled, government-organized trip to cover the polls. This is what it wrote: “The election — a vote to choose rural development officials — was called suddenly, giving parties only a week to register candidates before the first round of the eight-phase polling began in November, political leaders said. Many prominent Kashmiri politicians and public figures remain in detention with no recourse, or under threat. And hundreds of thousands of political workers for India’s Hindu-nationalist ruling party, the Bharatiya Janata Party, traveled through the region carrying banners and signs, hoping to make a strong showing in a mostly Muslim territory where it has traditionally been loathed. Activists say hundreds of people, including separatists, political moderates, civil society advocates and journalists remain in jail after they were swept up last year. Accusations of torture by security forces were widespread.” The NYT contacted Mehbooba Mufti,, and Farooq and Omar Abdullah, and reported that ” ….. they said they were unable to grant interviews. On Saturday, it was announced that the Indian government was investigating Farooq Abdullah on money-laundering charges.” Sure, the people there are interested in development, but aren’t they concerned about the detentions of prominent Kashmiri politicians, public figures, separatists, political moderates, civil society advocates and journalists? Don’t they want their state back?

  2. India – in a broader sense than the government, although it has the legal authority – should accept the verdicts for Vodafone and Cairn. One, because they represent the correct position in facts and law, arrived at by neutral, impartial bodies. Equally, as an acknowledgement that it respects a global, rule based order, even if it is sometimes hurt by the determination. 2. The gentlest observation about the author of the retrospective amendment – now being called out on social media – is that he was much more than the sum of his parts.

  3. Both development and dignity. Restoration of statehood would move the process of reconciliation forward. The binary of political interest versus national interest is playing out all over the country. At least Kashmir should be off the table for that enterprise. The gains of 5th August 2019 are proving to be as elusive as those of 8th November 2016.

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