Editors Column

The US has got increasingly isolated owing to the protectionist and impulsive economic policies under president Donald Trump, perhaps based on a propped up  notion of American power. The multi-lateral trading regime, World Trade Organisation (WTO), on the other hand, is under severe stress to justify its existence.

Scams invariably result in blame game. The blame game involving the government and the Reserve Bank of India in the wake of the Nirav Modi-Mehul Choksi episode follows this pattern, except that there is an important difference now.

After he assumed charge as Congress president, Rahul Gandhi had promised to present a new party to the voters. The 84th plenary of the Congress in New Delhi gave a glimpse of what he meant. He took over the party’s leadership at a time when the Congress worker was demoralised and disillusioned by successive electoral reverses. 

The inevitable has happened. The Telugu Desam Party (TDP)’s final parting of ways with the Bharatiya-Janata Party-led NDA was expected the day party chief N Chandrababu Naidu ordered his ministers to quit the Union cabinet.

The whole issue of getting to the bottom of the banking scam could be falling between two stools. After Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Urjit Patel, in effect, bared his heart as he revealed the limitations in the central bank’s power to regulate and investigate banking operations, it is pertinent to ask where the RBI’s responsibilities end and the government’s begin.

One way of looking at the recent by-elections in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, the results of which were declared on Wednesday, is that they give dynasts like Akhilesh Yadav and Tejaswi Yadav hope for the future. But, there is a larger message in the elections. For one, the invincibility of BJP juggernaut peddled with impunity in every election from Kutch to Agartala has come under serious threat.

Airbus A320Neo jets fitted with below quality Pratt & Whitney engines manufactured mid-2017 onwards should not put safety of Indian air passengers at stake. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) may have procrastinated for quite some time before grounding some of the aircraft belonging to IndiGo and GoAir aircraft fitted with these new but faulty engines.

The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2018, introduced in the Lok Sabha by the Narendra Modi government on Monday, faces some genuine concerns for being too harsh and violative of property rights. The proposed legislation, among other things, aims to impound and sell property belonging to fugitives who have been charged with economic offences.

French president Emmanuel Macron’s on-going four-day visit to India is significant in more ways than one and may turn out to be a watershed moment in Indo-French ties that have only flourished over time.

If there is one institution in the country that has escaped corrosion it is the Indian Army. But the recent turn of events has caused alarm and voices of concern have highlighted the need to isolate the army from politicisation. Army chief general Bipin Rawat has often exhibited the unusual trait of venturing into territories that were avoided by his illustrious predecessors.