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

Letter from a possible climate-change migrant

Dear Global Leaders and Activists, As you continue efforts in Paris to produce a meaningful deal over climate change, the future of vulnerable countries hangs in the balance. Against such a background, this letter comes from a potential climate-change migrant seeking shelter in other countries in a future that may not be as distant as… Read More

Rise of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and New Development Bank reinforces need for World Bank/IMF reform

Mr. Syed Munir Khasru says the emergence of two multilateral development banks should lead to an opportunity to push the reform process forward The annual meeting of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund held in Lima, Peru earlier this month failed to come up with meaningful takeaways on the agenda of reform. Meanwhile,… Read More

Modi talks up SAARC in Dubai — but a SAARC minus Pakistan and weighted east.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in his speech in Dubai: “We are strengthening connectivity in SAARC. Some have tried to block talks. But rest of SAARC will move ahead — India, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh have signed a pact for building connectivity (BBIN). A new life has been infused in SAARC which was earlier a forum for sparring… Read More

A month after Modi visit, there are doubts in Dhaka if he will walk the talk

A month has passed since Prime Minister Narendra Modi endeared himself in Dhaka with his charisma and eloquence. Through a slew of cooperation agreements, a captivating public speech and Bengali tweets among other things, Modi won many hearts in Dhaka. The entire spectrum of Bangladeshi political parties warmed to the cause of taking Indo-Bangla relations… Read More

Rohingya refugee crisis can be solved only if ASEAN musters the will do to so

For the boat people of Southeast Asia, each day begins with a thickening sense of uncertainty, despair and a fading glimmer of hope. Thousands have been rescued in the past month by authorities and fishermen in Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia after being stranded in the Andaman Sea. While some are Bangladeshis migrating for better jobs… Read More

Great expectations in Dhaka: Modi has an opportunity to reboot India-Bangladesh relations after many erratic flip-flops

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is visiting Dhaka from June 6-7 to discuss the ‘entire gamut’ of bilateral issues. The Modi government has shown decisiveness in passing the Land Boundary Agreement that was in limbo for more than four decades. While the Indira Gandhi government made the deal, Congress failed to ratify it in Parliament,… Read More