P.C. Alexander


P.C. Alexander

In Nowhere Land

When the Congress Party lost its position as the dominant national party in the 1989 elections, many people believed that this role would be inherited by the Janata Dal coalition under the leadership

Control issues

When Kapil Sibal was elevated to Cabinet rank and assigned the crucial portfolio of human resources development (HRD), many people had great expectations from him about reforms in the education sector

PM’s straight talk

I cannot recall any press conference of Dr Manmohan Singh that created such varying and contradictory reactions in the media than the one addressed by him on May 24, 2010, on completion of one year of

Spitting images

The recent judgment of the five-member Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court on a writ petition challenging the removal in 2004 by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government of four governors

Going rate of loyalty

May.05 : No political party can be said to have come out with any great gains in the voting that took place on April 27 on the cut motions tabled by the Opposition parties in Parliament. The Congress, no doubt, won with a handsome margin (289 against 201) but I will deal here with the negative side of the voting.

Yours, feudally

April.21 : Two events in the last few days deserve special attention of the readers — one, a meeting of the Maha Panchayat of 36 “khaps”, or gotras, in Kurushetra, Haryana, on April 13, to protest against the death sentence of awarded to the five accused in an “honour killing” case and the other a march to Jaipur being organised by Rajasthan’s Gujjar community to demand five per cent special quota within the quota of other backward classes (OBCs). Though unrelated, both these events provide us an opportunity to take note of certain disturbing trends of social and political behaviour in our democracy and to consider what immediate steps are required to deal with such challenges to the authority of the Constitution and the law.

India’s problems

April.07 : Anne O. Krueger in her book Economic Policy Reforms and Indian Economy narrates an interesting anecdote about a meeting at which discussions were centered on development strategies. When a speaker referred to India with the words “In a country like India”, well-known economist Harry Johnson interrupted the speaker by a counter question, “What other country is like India?” Through a simple question Harry Johnson was trying to convey that India’s problems cannot be compared with those of other developing countries, large or small, and that they have to be tackled in the background that’s specific to India. Let me begin with some of these special problems.  

The quota quibble

March 24 : A few days ago a statement by Lalu Prasad Yadav appeared in the press — he was asserting that the Women’s Reservation Bill would be passed by Parliament only over his dead body. One would have thought that an experienced politician like Mr Yadav would not be so

Put states in order

March 10 : Most people who have been following the functioning of Parliament in recent years would have noticed that which causes protests and disorder in the House is the complaint that the government has not been taking the leaders of the Opposition parties into

Unprincipled politics

Feb.24 : Some of the recent decisions taken by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and the Congress, the main political party leading the coalition, have come in for sharp criticism — that certain healthy principles that must be observed by the ruling party in a parliamentary democracy have been sacrificed in order to retain power in some states. The UPA and the Congress has also been criticised for setting bad precedents.

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I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.