Cancelled SAARC summit exposes Pakistan’s foreign policy failure, whose root cause is its obsession with India

With five out of seven neighbours of Pakistan withdrawing from the SAARC summit scheduled to be held in Islamabad next month, the dismal failure of Pakistan’s diplomacy has been exposed. SAARC’s mechanism dictates that non-participation of any one member will result in cancellation of the summit. Yet five member nations officiated their withdrawal, showing how… Read More

Prospects & Challenges of Connectivity & Trading in Power & Energy: A Regional & International Perspective (IPAG Knowledge Series Book 1)

On the occasion of the capacity building & training program on ‘Power & Energy in South Asia: Connectivity through Cooperation’, IPAG published this collection of 30 articles authored by policymakers, seasoned experts, practitioners and academicians. The articles reflect thoughts and intellectual prowess of national and global professionals from 15 countries across 4 continents. The authors have… Read More

Why ‘love thy neighbour’ is still great advice for China and India

Mr. Syed Munir Khasru says given the significant influence of the two countries over the entire Asia-Pacific, they could learn from the EU and find ways to come together for greater regional prosperity Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s (王毅) meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in New Delhi on… Read More

Nice to Singapore to Dhaka: Joining the dots on terrorism

Radical ideologies are spreading faster than before, and appealing to vastly different cross-sections of people. How can this be tackled? In Bangladesh, a popular cafe in the capital, Dhaka, is attacked on July 1 by youngsters from well-educated, wealthy backgrounds who kill the cafe’s Italian, Japanese, Indian and local patrons. In Singapore, on July 12,… Read More

Take Dhaka tragedy as a wake-up call: No country is immune from such terror attacks

The terrifying attack on a calm Friday evening, at the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka, has perplexed the world. The gruesome killing of innocent civilians has prompted many theories. For the first time in the history of Bangladesh, a popular socialising place had more than 30 people taken hostage for a gut-wrenching 12 hours of… Read More

Nailing the neighbourly dividend

A year since Mr. Modi’s visit to Dhaka, progress has been made on many fronts but greater issues remain at bay. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Dhaka last year raised hopes for the settlement of old issues between India and Bangladesh. “We are not just neighbours. We are two nations bound by the threads… Read More

Reflections on Modi’s two years as Indian PM

When The Straits Times declared Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as “The Asian of the Year” in 2014, I wrote: “Your promise of ‘Acchhe Din’ or ‘Better Days’, which electrified Indian voters, needs to be backed by solid performance” (“An open letter to Modi, ST’s Asian of the Year”; Dec 12, 2014 ). With the… Read More

Cyber heist at the Fed is a wake-up call for all

Last week on May 6 Lorenzo Tan, President of the Philippines’ Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC) resigned in connection with the laundering of the funds when one of the biggest breaches of cyber security happened with funds of Bangladesh Central Bank siphoned off last February from the New York Federal Reserve. The news made headlines… Read More

South needs to COLD for cooperation to get warmer

The international conference on ‘South-South Cooperation (SSC)’, organized on March 10-11 by the Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS), one of the well respected Indian think tanks, took place at a time when the world is witnessing major paradigm shift in ‘global center of gravity from North to South’; also known as the… Read More

The real face of Bangladesh – moderate, secular

The arrests of 27 Bangladeshi workers under the Internal Security Act is the first instance that a radical militant terror cell comprising foreigners has been uncovered in Singapore. The Ministry of Home Affairs said last Wednesday that the authorities had arrested the Bangladeshis between Nov 16 and Dec 1 last year for supporting the armed… Read More