Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

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Manny
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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Manny » 20 Jul 2015 03:01

DECONSTRUCTING WENDY DONIGER

http://www.desicontrarian.com/?p=1

Now, I have updated the page with a section titled:

Lets compare and contrast Wendy’s Anti Hindu thesis vs Martin Luther’s Antisemitic thesis. Shall we?

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby devesh » 20 Jul 2015 03:22

^^^
thank you! excellent work. the hatred of the "heathen" has not gone away. Abrahamism keeps the core intolerance alive and intact.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby devesh » 20 Jul 2015 05:45

Abrahamic hatred & propaganda against Hindus in full force:

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/07/1 ... to-differ/

India tolerant? Its Christians beg to differ

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RamaY » 20 Jul 2015 05:47

devesh wrote:Abrahamic hatred & propaganda against Hindus in full force:

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/07/1 ... to-differ/

India tolerant? Its Christians beg to differ


That means Christian population crossed 10%

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RoyG » 20 Jul 2015 05:48

devesh wrote:Abrahamic hatred & propaganda against Hindus in full force:

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/07/1 ... to-differ/

India tolerant? Its Christians beg to differ


Means PMO is hitting them where it hurts.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby devesh » 20 Jul 2015 05:54

this could simply be the start of a crescendo that builds up to concrete moves to bring resolutions against India and specifically BJP in the UN. we should de-sensitize ourselves to such propaganda. simply shrug it off. because there is reason to believe that a coordinated hate campaign against Hindus and Hindu political assertion in Bharat is under way. let them bark. but we will not flinch. that should be the goal. and if eventually sanctions come, so be it. we have 80 crore people on our side. if we harness the strength and power of these 80 crore, we will be self-sufficient and the world will have no choice but to accept us as we want to be, and learn from us.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RamaY » 20 Jul 2015 05:59

devesh wrote:this could simply be the start of a crescendo that builds up to concrete moves to bring resolutions against India and specifically BJP in the UN. we should de-sensitize ourselves to such propaganda. simply shrug it off. because there is reason to believe that a coordinated hate campaign against Hindus and Hindu political assertion in Bharat is under way. let them bark. but we will not flinch. that should be the goal. and if eventually sanctions come, so be it. we have 80 crore people on our side. if we harness the strength and power of these 80 crore, we will be self-sufficient and the world will have no choice but to accept us as we want to be, and learn from us.


Just want to add that remaining 45 crore are peaceful & patriotic Indians.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby devesh » 20 Jul 2015 06:01

^^^
I completely agree!

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby sanjaykumar » 20 Jul 2015 06:10

Catholics preaching tolerance? Irony is usually lost on the obtuse.

The bloodthirsty history of the church is barely matched by other Christian sects and Islam. Leave Hinduism out of this. Introspect.

It's not even entertaining to argue the case.
Last edited by sanjaykumar on 20 Jul 2015 06:28, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RamaY » 20 Jul 2015 06:13

So the hypothesis is that all Indians are peaceful & patriotic but have their own idea of India and vision for it.

A communist Indian wants single party (communist) rule where all religions are banned & citizens don't have any property rights or voting rights etc.

A Muslim Indian wants return of Khilji/Ghaznavi/Turk/Mughal rule with Sharia as the law of the land. They may charge a small tax on non-Muslims in return for state protection from the Islam.

A Christian Indian wants return of British rule with Vaticans blessing & the freedom and state support to spread the good news to rest of Indians and also civilize them.

A secular Indian wants freedom to all of the above to achieve their idea/vision of India.

What does a Hindu Indian want?

Will the above Indians hold on to peace & patriotism if another group gets to win?

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby UlanBatori » 20 Jul 2015 06:47

AoA! ppl doing yadayadayada when the barbarians are attacking in full force, hain? In Atanu Dey's words:
Circular Firing Squad of Flying Monkeys Targets Rajiv Malhotra


One response:
Fundamentalist Cleric Throws Plagiarism Bull at American Author

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby sanjaykumar » 20 Jul 2015 07:13

Okay. From Malhotra

http://creative.sulekha.com/risa-lila-1 ... 338_blog#6#6

Other conclusions by these well-placed scholars [i](Wendy's children) include: Ganesha's trunk symbolizes a “limp phallus”; his broken tusk is a symbol for the castration-complex of the Hindu male; his large belly is a proof of the Hindu male's enormous appetite for oral sex.[/i]

This surpasses an already grossly dated Freud.

I am sorry but this is old testament gibberish. Only Ezekiel could equal it. Perhaps it doesn't translate well from the Hebrew. There are more important things in life than debating the mentally infirm.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Arjun » 20 Jul 2015 08:01

devesh wrote:Abrahamic hatred & propaganda against Hindus in full force:

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/07/1 ... to-differ/

India tolerant? Its Christians beg to differ

Christians in India seem to be beating the Muslims in ability for manufactured victimhood complex. I wouldn't be surprised if they've slipped to rank bottom in country on education and other attainment metrics.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RoyG » 20 Jul 2015 08:37

sanjaykumar wrote:Okay. From Malhotra

http://creative.sulekha.com/risa-lila-1 ... 338_blog#6#6

Other conclusions by these well-placed scholars [i](Wendy's children) include: Ganesha's trunk symbolizes a “limp phallus”; his broken tusk is a symbol for the castration-complex of the Hindu male; his large belly is a proof of the Hindu male's enormous appetite for oral sex.[/i]

This surpasses an already grossly dated Freud.

I am sorry but this is old testament gibberish. Only Ezekiel could equal it. Perhaps it doesn't translate well from the Hebrew. There are more important things in life than debating the mentally infirm.


This is pretty disgusting stuff.

Don't get me wrong, everyone's entitled to their views and opinions.

It becomes a problem though if it becomes the dominant discourse in an academic setting.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Satya_anveshi » 20 Jul 2015 08:42

UlanBatori wrote:AoA! ppl doing yadayadayada when the barbarians are attacking in full force, hain? In Atanu Dey's words:
Circular Firing Squad of Flying Monkeys Targets Rajiv Malhotra


One response:
Fundamentalist Cleric Throws Plagiarism Bull at American Author


As always, switft and brilliant guru ji. Shaastang pranams.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby sanjaykumar » 20 Jul 2015 08:54

Well RoyG why get the calvin kleins in a twist? Is there any meaningful debate in India other than malhotra and a couple of others? Are the louts from the right wing as versed in bible studies as they are in Valentine's Day?

Yes all are entitled to their opinions. No holy cows indeed. Only it is hopelessly one sided. The poor can be excused. The middle classes have their whisky. The general intellectual discourse in Indian society is pitiful.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RoyG » 20 Jul 2015 09:18

sanjaykumar wrote:Well RoyG why get the calvin kleins in a twist? Is there any meaningful debate in India other than malhotra and a couple of others? Are the louts from the right wing as versed in bible studies as they are in Valentine's Day?

Yes all are entitled to their opinions. No holy cows indeed. Only it is hopelessly one sided. The poor can be excused. The middle classes have their whisky. The general intellectual discourse in Indian society is pitiful.


Haha, hence:

It becomes a problem though if it becomes the dominant discourse in an academic setting.


Things are changing slowly. Already things are happening at the top and there is a growing grass roots movement to go along with it.

It will take 1-2 more decades to really see some big changes but it's going to need momentum which has only come in the last 5 years.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Paul » 22 Jul 2015 14:42

China is buying islands in the Maldives...Per RajaMohan

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby krithivas » 24 Jul 2015 09:29

This is dated 2009 report on the vermin Michael Witzels low key visit to India -
http://www.vijayvaani.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?aid=726
Unanswered Questions
What is the truth behind Dr. Michael Witzel’s visit? Why did he come, and why was it kept low profile? Which organizations apart from The Indian Academy of Sciences hosted him? Normally a visiting foreign dignitary/scholar receives generous media coverage, especially when he enjoys anti-Hindu credentials, but this time the media was kept away from Michael Witzel. Was it deliberate? If so, why?

Did he come alone or with a team? If he came with a team, where did the others go and what did they do? Witzel confessed in his tour report that he was given access to “original manuscripts” and other records in all the places he visited. Was he allowed to take copies of such documents or were they were sold to him? If so, were those institutions authorized to provide him with these records?


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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Manny » 24 Jul 2015 10:32

Lastly, Academia must make note of this… What happens to dictators and despots eventually… Eventually, people figure out what is going on, and they start to work around you before pushing you into irrelevance. With many more Hindus awake today than ten years ago, you are that much closer to being pushed aside and made to watch the resurgence of Sanātana Dharma as a strong, viable third civilizational option.2 Rather than fighting the people you claim to study, please make the effort to simply listen to Sanātanis as collaborators of equal standing, not as “native informants.” Having grown up as a white American woman and having studied enough about Sanātana Dharma to know the difference, I can see where western Indology knowledge doesn’t match the knowledge of insiders. First of all, you don’t know the people you claim to study. Secondly, you don’t know or speak the languages fluently, and thirdly, you don’t bother to ask the people to help check the accuracy of your translations and perspectives on subjects that are natural to them but alien to you.4 On top of this, many Hindus and supporters are now aware of the attempts of Christian missionaries, Muslims, Communists, and Western Indology to tear asunder Indic civilization and Dharmic life. For those of you work intentionally to try to defeat Sanātana Dharma and install in place some other substitute, beware; there are consequences, such as being shunned, blacklisted as haters, and having scholarly careers destroyed because people will know about you and what you are up to. Please stop to think about what you are doing and consider the consequences of being caught and tossed aside. Many regimes in the past fell because they thought they were so strong that nothing could stop them.

http://www.vicharvimarsh.com/2015/07/23 ... s-like-me/

Why Rajiv Malhotra matters to “White” Hindus like me

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby kish » 24 Jul 2015 18:28

Congratulations Kerala Hindus, you are the first southern state to become "Hindu minority" state.

MINORITIES HAVE BECOME MAJORITY IN KERALA: BJP

Muraleedharan said that Muslims now constituted 32 per cent of Kerala’s population. “The minorities were 44 per cent in the State in 2001 but in ten years they had grown to form 52 per cent of the population. Hindus, who were 56 per cent in 2001, have now been reduced to just 48 per cent,” the State BJP chief said.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby shravanp » 24 Jul 2015 18:53

devesh wrote:this could simply be the start of a crescendo that builds up to concrete moves to bring resolutions against India and specifically BJP in the UN. we should de-sensitize ourselves to such propaganda. simply shrug it off. because there is reason to believe that a coordinated hate campaign against Hindus and Hindu political assertion in Bharat is under way. let them bark. but we will not flinch. that should be the goal. and if eventually sanctions come, so be it. we have 80 crore people on our side. if we harness the strength and power of these 80 crore, we will be self-sufficient and the world will have no choice but to accept us as we want to be, and learn from us.



Let them bring resolutions against India. The more they raise their shrill against India and specifically BJP/NaMo, the more Indians get woken up from the slumber to see this nonsense. EJ/Jihadis work the best when they are hiding under cover and silently. Just as they did under UPA rule. Without the cover, they cannot operate. Any slightest vindictive action by West against India will badly backfire on them.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby shravanp » 24 Jul 2015 18:57

kish wrote:Congratulations Kerala Hindus, you are the first southern state to become "Hindu minority" state.

MINORITIES HAVE BECOME MAJORITY IN KERALA: BJP

Muraleedharan said that Muslims now constituted 32 per cent of Kerala’s population. “The minorities were 44 per cent in the State in 2001 but in ten years they had grown to form 52 per cent of the population. Hindus, who were 56 per cent in 2001, have now been reduced to just 48 per cent,” the State BJP chief said.



The party resolution felt that Kerala could become a Muslim-majority State within 25 years. State BJP president V Muraleedharan sought an investigation into the large-scale migration of Muslims from Bangladesh into the State in the garb of migrant workers and the alleged efforts to get them enrolled in the voters’ list.



Cong/NCP have done this in Mumbai as well. Bringing in B'deshis in massive number. Nalasoprara and Dahisar areas have witnessed abnormal growth of Muslim population

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Manny » 26 Jul 2015 07:05

http://www.desicontrarian.com/?p=1

DECONSTRUCTING WENDY DONIGER


Wendy Doniger’s (The alleged Hindu expert of the west) hatred of the classical Hinduism and Brahmins is not very different than the 1930’s christian’s hatred of the Jews and Judaism.

Alternate history of the Jews written by none other than the protestant founder Martin Luther in his “Jews and their Lies” which almost every christian German was influenced by and their subsequent hatred for their “upper caste” Jews (God’s chosen people). There was the perception that the Jews not unlike the upper castes/Brahmins had a monopoly of the arts, the sciences and their financial institutions and everything else of importance in Germany during the 30s and that others were somehow prohibited from doing bigger and better things on their own by their “upper castes” (Jews). The allegedly “poor ordinary Germans” were the “backward castes” who needed to be saved from the alleged evil upper caste Jews. The only way that could be done was to take the Jewish history and Jewish culture and rewrite them for the benefit of the “underdogs” of German Christians. Let’s show these upper castes that we the populists can do to them was the thought of those days in that Christian country.. It went “We the backward caste ordinary Germans have a number on these elites”. So Martin Luther, Hitler and others ( Lyra, Burgensis, and John Chrysostom, before them) went about rewriting Jewish history and culture and had their own unflattering and grotesque interpretations which they embellished to their satisfaction. Thus was born the alternate Jewish history of “Jews and their Iies” and Mein Kampf.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Vipul » 17 Aug 2015 19:12

India's most influential think-tanks.

The US capital is known for its think-tanks. They are often aligned to one of the two parties, the Democrats or the Republicans. Each time, there is a transfer of power after the elections and a new incumbent in White House, there is an exodus and influx in these institutes as sympathisers of the winning side are brought into government and those on the losing side look out for jobs in policy institutions. This lateral movement between governments, think-tanks, and even corporates lends US polity a distinct character.

New Delhi has always been more like London, albeit more closed. With a permanent bureaucracy, UK's government does not get affected too drastically by a change in who occupies the Prime Ministerial residence at 10 Downing Street. The permanent establishment in India - the officials who belong to the elite all-India services - continue to run the show and influence policy and advise political leadership. Historian Srinath Raghavan says, "In both systems it is more difficult for outsiders to impact policy, which is bureaucracy-driven. This is particularly true in the foreign policy space."

India is, however, at an interesting, though rather paradoxical, moment. On one hand, power is centralised under this government. The Prime Minister's Office is driving policy across spheres. Nowhere is this truer than in the realm of security and foreign policy, where a very limited set of powerful individuals is calling the shots. The term of the last National Security Advisory Board (NSAB), which was the only mechanism for interaction between government and experts, ended over six months ago and no one is quite sure whether it will be reconstituted.

On the other hand, the system is indicating that it is more open to outside inputs and engagement. This is reflected through three developments. One, there is the rise of the think-tank with close party affiliations. When PM Narendra Modi took office, he appointed AK Doval as National Security Advisor and Nripendra Misra as Principal Secretary. Both were closely associated with the Vivekananda International Foundation. In the past year, the India Foundation has also gained prominence. IF's driving force is Ram Madhav, a powerful BJP leader who has been laying the groundwork for the PM's foreign visits and engaging with foreign interlocutors. Key cabinet ministers are among its members.

Two, Indian businesses have begun investing in creating policy research institutes and think-tanks, and the government has been engaging with such outfits. The Observer Research Foundation is supported by Reliance; the Ananta Aspen Centre has a group of business leaders funding their operations. Foreign think-tanks too have begun setting up their India operations. Brookings now has an India office, which again is supported by wealthy Indian business leaders. And Carnegie Endowment is expected to set up a local office by next year.

Three, when Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar took over office earlier this year, he made it clear that a key priority for him would be reviving the Policy Planning division of the Ministry of External Affairs. He brought in a new Joint Secretary, and indicated that the division would have more resources. It could hire experts from outside the government; and it was tasked to enhance engagement with the city's think-tanks. The government has also appointed a new head for the MEA-supported think-tank, with a brief to ramp up its operations.

The state in India has historically been more open to outside expertise in the realm of the economy. From Manmohan Singh and Montek Singh Ahluwalia to Arvind Panagriya and Arvind Subramanian, the executive has brought in experts at the highest levels. The Niti Ayog itself has been envisaged as a think-tank.

While this has not extended to the strategic affairs space, things may slowly be changing. In this context, here's a look at the city's premier think-tanks, their areas of work, sources of funding, and role in shaping policy and engaging in wider public debates.

IDSA - inside the national-security state
After the debacle of the 1962 war with China, the government felt that it needed outside expertise on defence and security affairs. And thus was born the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis (IDSA). The eminent strategic guru, K Subrahmanyam, played a key role in structuring the institute's research. A key moment in its evolution was during the debate on whether India should go nuclear. IDSA came out strongly backing the strategic choice to go nuclear, shaped larger opinion, and conveyed India's position to the global strategic community through Track 2 dialogues.

IDSA's president is the Raksha Mantri; its annual report is tabled in parliament; and the funding is entirely by the Ministry of Defence. Serving officers of the armed forces come for a period of two years to gain a wider policy perspective. The institute's infrastructure is the envy of all other think-tanks in town - its vast structure built on land leased by the government in Delhi's cantonment area includes office space, housing for scholars and staff and guest accommodation. IDSA's annual budget is about 14 crore and it has around 60 full-time researchers and scholars on its rolls.

But the direct link with government is also a weakness. It is seen as an extension of the MOD, with little autonomy.

Brigadier Rumel Dahiya, IDSA's deputy director general, however, counters this perception. "We are not a part of government, and I have never seen anyone impose a government line on IDSA. What happens is the government takes note of our research, which is mostly in the public domain. They may sometimes ask us for more specific papers which we provide. We also get to know the general line of thinking in government but do not have access to confidential papers and documents," he says.

Countering the criticism that the institute should be doing more given its resources, he said, "If you compare it to foreign think-tanks, our budget is adequate but minimal. We could send a larger number of scholars for field trips for longer duration if it increases."

IDSA's last Director General, Arvind Gupta, a former IFS officer, was appointed the Deputy National Security Advisor last year. Since then, there has been a leadership deficit at the institute as the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet has not picked a new DG.

ICWA- the diplomatic den
Set up in 1943, the Indian Council for World Affairs (ICWA) has an illustrious legacy - the Asian Relations Conference was convened here right before independence, which set the tone for Nehru's policy emphasis on Asian unity.

The ICWA's budget, according to its website, is around Rs 10 crore annually. Its chair is the Vice President of India and it is often the platform where key visiting dignitaries make their public speeches. Rajiv Bhatia, a retired diplomat, who just finished a three-year term as ICWA's director, said the council's activities included research and Track 2 exchanges. He added that, in recent years, they had made a concerted effort to work in Hindi and to reach out to the young.

But its problem, like IDSA's, is that it is only seen as an extension of the ministry, in this case the MEA (Important to track which of its "researchers" belong to the JNU jholawala types).

Bhatia counters this. "The ICWA is not a government think-tank. It is answerable only to the governing body and the direction in which the research happens is academically sound," he says.

A criticism that ICWA has faced is that it has become a retiring home for diplomats (Bhadrakumar types). Some believe that academics should lead it as they would better understand research requirements and be inclined to shape the trajectory of younger academics.

Bhatia, however, feels that as former diplomats know the broad policy framework, they also know which areas need greater research. "It is a policy think-tank and need not be necessarily run by a professor," he says. He concedes that a serving official running the council could pose credibility issues. "Having a retired ambassador however is a good via media."

The government has recently appointed Nalin Surie, a well regarded retired diplomat, to ICWA with a brief to restructure the outfit and enhance its output. Whether Surie at ICWA - and the new appointee at IDSA - can walk the tightrope of being government supported yet independent and whether they can shore up quality will be an important test.

ORF - between government and business
If you are on any of New Delhi's think-tank mailing lists, your inbox would often be flooded with mails from the Observer Research Foundation with an invite to their events - the frequency of which has only increased. This is not surprising given that ORF has grown five times in the last five years, and now has a budget of Rs 25 crore. By annual spending alone, this makes it the biggest think-tank in town.

Conceived in 1991 by Reliance founder Dhirubhai Ambani as a platform for his policymakers, scholars and journalists of different persuasions to devise pragmatic solutions and a liberal regime they were comfortable with, ORF spent its first decade focused on internal issues of economy. Since 2000, the conversation has expanded and now 80% of ORF's work is centred on engagement with the outside world.

This, says Samir Saran, the man who has driven ORF's growth in recent years, is natural because of the interconnectedness of internal and external issues. The presence of key thinkers on foreign policy like C Raja Mohan at ORF has added to its intellectual heft.

Reliance continues to support ORF. If, in 2009, 95% of the budget was provided by the company, it is now around 65% with the foundation diversifying its sources to include the government, private corporates, foreign foundations and others. There is also a trust that the ORF reports to, which is, on paper, independent of Reliance.

This relationship with Reliance has led to a key question: is it is appropriate for private corporates to try to influence policy, especially in sectors like energy and defence where they have other commercial interests?

Saran says, "Influence is a misplaced description. It is more investing in policy research institutions. Is it our intention to keep corporate India from investing in research and public policy studies or to keep out one set of actors from the debate? Policy making must not be the monopoly of any one set of actors and in recent times, many corporations and private entities have begun to invest in this space. This is a welcome trend and the more such institutions we have, the more irrelevant this question would be."

He adds that it is only in India that private sector participation is looked down upon, whereas in the rest of the world, the ability to engage with all actors is appreciated. "Look, be it political think tanks, private think tanks or government think tanks, the more the better. Funding must be transparent; there must be no hidden strings attached; there must be full disclosure; and the research work must be professionally conducted. The consumer of research can then take an informed decision."

ORF's engagement with the government has also grown over the years. It now receives project-specific funding from the Ministry of External Affairs for studies on BRICS, Russia, climate and other thematic issues. It hosts a range of Track 2 dialogues with France, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Australia, BRICS and Track 1.5 dialogues where officials from both sides are present but without a formal agenda and format. It also hosts the Indian Ocean Dialogue and Blue Economies Forum and has other projects lined up with the government.

When asked about the government relationship, and whether this kind of support would compromise its independence, Saran says, "We are acutely aware of the need to balance a proximate relationship with the government that would allow enough distance to be able to conduct research freely and yet be cordial enough so that we would be able to share insights and ideas with institutions that are best placed to make use of them." He says their approach is different from that of activists. "We believe it is possible to be critical without being adversarial."

CPR - between academia and policy
Few individuals evoke the kind of respect that Pratap Bhanu Mehta does in India's public sphere. A political theorist, constitutional scholar, policy analyst and prolific public commentator whose writings are taken seriously by those in power, Mehta has a full time day job - President and CEO of the Centre for Policy Research.

Over lunch at the Malcha Marg market close to the CPR office in Chanakyapuri, Mehta says he sees the role of CPR as being an 'honest broker in a public argument'. For him, policy impact is not necessarily the hallmark of a successful think-tank. Mehta believes that the democratic public, rather than the state, needs to be the intended audience. "There is also a difference between the government listening to you and the government agreeing exactly with what you suggest. I would not like to carry the presumptive authority that the government in a democracy must agree."

CPR itself is somewhat distinct as it is a cross between a think-tank and a research institution. "There are people here who would have been happy in universities too but find the independent research space congenial to work." CPR has, Mehta says, historically been comfortable with people from different sides of the argument being in the same organisation with the operating assumption that it is on good faith. There is no CPR line and scholars are free to pursue their independent interests.

The centre now has an annual budget of Rs16 crore. As an Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) recognised institution, it receives support from the government. It also gets funding from foreign foundations and private philanthropists.

Commenting on debates around foreign support, Mehta points out that institutions like the Ford Foundation were important in creating an independent, social science intellectual system in India . "From the Law Institute to CSDS to CPR, Ford played a big role. The key is funding should not have any strings attached." (Check the insidious role that Ford Foundation has played in delaying important projects like Narmada Dam)

In the realm of foreign and security policy, Mehta, former diplomat Shyam Saran, economist Rajiv Kumar, and historian Srinath Raghavan - all at CPR now - were a part of the team that drafted Non-Alignment 2.0 (2012), an influential policy document on the direction Indian foreign policy should take. Saran was the chair of the National Security Advisory Board, with Raghavan as a member till recently. Brahma Chellaney and Bharat Karnad of the centre are also important voices in foreign policy debates. CPR also has expertise in climate change policy.

India Foundation - the inner chamber
With a board that includes the country's railway minister Suresh Prabhu, MOS for finance Jayant Sinha, MOS for commerce Nirmala Sitharaman, the BJP's powerful general secretary Ram Madhav, BJP Rajya Sabha MP MJ Akbar, and the son of the National Security Advisor, Shaurya Doval, there is little doubt that India Foundation is today the country's most powerful think-tank.

When the IF convenes a meeting, everyone who is invited turns up. Just last week, RN Ravi, the government's interlocutor for the Naga talks, addressed a closed door IF roundtable. Ravi himself was a part of IF activities till he was appointed interlocutor. Often held on Wednesdays, such meetings are moderated by MJ Akbar and have been addressed by the NSA, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti, and Walter Anderson, a scholar specialising on the Sangh.

The IF has four core events every year. The India Ideas Conclave, held in Goa, is an attempt to create a new 'ecosystem of the intellectual right'; the Counter Terrorism Conference, held in Jaipur, saw the cream of the security establishment and global experts participate; the Indian Economy Convention, organised by Shaurya Doval, was addressed by Modi before the elections and will be held next month in Delhi; and the Dharma-Dhamma conference will bring together 'oriental religions', Hinduism and Buddhism, in Indore this year.

Operating out of a small apartment on Hailey Road, the line between the government, party and the think-tank is clearly blurred in IF's case - with overlapping loyalties of members. Unlike the US, where those who join government leave positions in think-tanks, that has not happened here. IF sources claim that is not necessary as the ministers are not receiving any salaries. This overlap makes it difficult to judge exactly how it influences policy. It happens as much through the informal network - a casual chat and phone conversation - as through any structured dialogue. IF sources are keen to clarify that it is not a party think-tank. The Shyama Prasad Research Foundation is officially linked to the BJP but it is mostly dormant. So the IF is as close to an influential party-affiliated think-tank as India has seen.

For its big events, the IF collaborates with outside institutions including state governments, public bodies and private foundations. Sources claim that it has limited resources, only a few full time staffers and does not engage in primary research. HT could not access the exact annual budget of the outfit. Doval was travelling outside the country when contacted for this story.

VIF - foot in the PMO
With both NSA Doval and the PM's Principal Secretary Nripendra Misra having been closely associated with the Vivekananda International Foundation, it is no surprise that this became the most talked about think-tank in town when the new government was formed.

Built on land provided by the PV Narasimha Rao government, the vast and spacious VIF office is located in the city's diplomatic enclave, Chanakyapuri. VIF's core activities revolve around international relations, defence, economy, governance and historical and civilisational studies. In the last year, among other activities, it has engaged deeply with Chinese and US delegations and had Track 2 exchanges. It hosted the British and French defence ministers, convened meetings with over 20 foreign ambassadors, and hosted many seminars on relations with Pakistan.

General NC Vij, former army chief who took over as VIF director from Doval, believes the USP of the outfit is that it has a large number of senior people who have served in government. "They bring in vast amounts of experience. They are listened to because they are not prone to flights of fancy and provide practical advice."

When asked if the presence of Doval in the PMO means that the VIF is close to the BJP and now the government, Vij says, "Doval had a strong independent identity even before he actively led the VIF. He was, after all, Director of IB. The government needs good professionals."

Vij points out that it is a 'small circle' and people know each other but categorically asserts that the VIF is 'independent' and 'apolitical'. "We have no links with any party. We don't really see ourselves as influencing policy. Our role is to throw up ideas, offer opinions, and then it is up to the government to use it or not."

The engagement with government however takes other forms. Reports of key seminars - with the Chinese ambassador or Pakistani high commissioner - are sent to authorities with relevant recommendations. Next month, the VIF is hosting a Global Hindu Buddhist Conference on Conflict Avoidance and Environmental Protection. This will be inaugurated by PM Modi, who has made the theme of Buddhism an important element of his cultural diplomacy.

The VIF takes no money from the government. "We are funded by the Vivekananda Kendra," says Vij. The Kendra is headquartered in Kanyakumari and depends on donations. The VIF's annual budget, according to its annual report, in 2013-14 was a little less than Rs 3 crore.

Ananta Aspen Centre - convening dialogues
The first thing that Kiran Pasricha, the executive director of the Ananta Aspen Centre, likes to clarify is that the organisation is not a branch office or an India chapter of the Aspen Institute.

Run out of Thapar House on Janpath, the Centre was initially a result of collaboration between CII and Aspen - but over the years, while it has relationships with both, it has evolved into an autonomous entity. It views itself as being primarily a convening body for discussions on diverse themes with a diverse set of interlocutors, and not as a research-based outfit. Ananta has a good relationship with the government. It convenes over ten strategic dialogues with countries like China, Japan, Singapore, Israel, Turkey, and Bhutan.

Some have become Track 1.5 in nature, because of the presence of a relevant Joint Secretary from the MEA or the Indian ambassador when it is happening outside the country. Visiting delegations also get to meet the local government, including senior ministers. And events hosted by the centre have seen high level government participation including of NSA Doval and cabinet ministers. Its current chair is SK Lambah, a former diplomat who served as the special envoy for Pakistan. (He was the point person appointed by MMS for back channel talks with Pakistan and his solution to the problem was reduction of troops in Kashmir and allowing "Free Movement" of people from Pakistan into J&K)


It takes no money from the government but derives its support from members of the Board of Trustees. The board includes top industrialists and business leaders like Gautam Thapar, CK Birla, Sanjiv Goenka, Naina Lal Kidwai, and Anu Aga.

When asked if this means that the centre is a medium for Indian business to push its interests, Pasricha is emphatic. "No. Our funding is not from any one business house but is diversified. Our board also includes MPs and distinguished intellectuals who guide programmes. And none or our events have been used by any delegates to push their business interests," he says.

Revenues are also raised through a separate organization, the Ananta Centre, which is for profit. [u]Its chair is Jamshyd Godrej[/b]. The organisation also runs leadership programmes. The combined budget of both is about Rs 5.5 crore.

It is interesting that Think Tanks advocating sell out of Indian interests are all either funded by controversial /favor seeking houses and retired babudom's who jet-set to various Paki, Atlantic council/ and Ford foundation type's sponsored "conferences" while those advocating the dharmic /or no sell-off cause are all self-funded, have military and non controversial personalities at the helm.

Note the role of PV Narsimha Rao in providing the initial support to Vivekananda Foundation.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby A_Gupta » 17 Aug 2015 22:16

I think the bombing in Bangkok is a reminder that the civilization is more extensive than the nation.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Vipul » 18 Aug 2015 21:23

Zee Media ventures into English news broadcasting.

Dr Subhash Chandra, chairman of Essel Group, which runs over 70 TV channels under the Zee umbrella and dna, on August 7 announced his plans to launch a global news network, in English, for global audiences with an India point of view, on the lines of BBC and CNN.

"If you watch BBC closely, you will realise that there is some British angle in most news items that they disseminate. CNN is having an overtly American point of view. They do not shy away from criticising those who are against the US interests. Don't know if we can reach their levels, but will surely attempt it," Dr Chandra had said then.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby rsingh » 18 Aug 2015 21:40

Vipul wrote:Zee Media ventures into English news broadcasting.

Dr Subhash Chandra, chairman of Essel Group, which runs over 70 TV channels under the Zee umbrella and dna, on August 7 announced his plans to launch a global news network, in English, for global audiences with an India point of view, on the lines of BBC and CNN.

"If you watch BBC closely, you will realise that there is some British angle in most news items that they disseminate. CNN is having an overtly American point of view. They do not shy away from criticising those who are against the US interests. Don't know if we can reach their levels, but will surely attempt it," Dr Chandra had said then.

That is something I was waiting for years. Good news.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby panduranghari » 19 Aug 2015 17:26

Vipul wrote:India's most influential think-tanks.

It is interesting that Think Tanks advocating sell out of Indian interests are all either funded by controversial /favor seeking houses and retired babudom's who jet-set to various Paki, Atlantic council/ and Ford foundation type's sponsored "conferences" while those advocating the dharmic /or no sell-off cause are all self-funded, have military and non controversial personalities at the helm.

Note the role of PV Narsimha Rao in providing the initial support to Vivekananda Foundation.


Vipul ji,
Many thanks for the post. My understanding of the 'think tank' phenomenon from the American perspective is - it acts like a way for the past politicians or bankers to stay relevant in the policy matters. Madeline Albright runs her own think tank. So do people or past people like Perot, Paulson, Carter etc. Where do they get so much money for running such institutions? Some have massive budgets - larger than some countries. Just like Reliance's ORF, these multitudes of American TT, must have business benefactors. Almost all would expect kickbacks for their investments. I do wonder if Reliance has derived any direct benefit through ORF?

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Vipul » 19 Aug 2015 22:27

During the Kargil conflict days there were some interesting news reports of what Prem Shankar Jha of ORF was trying to do for Reliance through the Track II contacts on the pakistani side.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby krithivas » 19 Aug 2015 23:07

NYT is attempting to resurrect Setalvad and poses an important question - "When the white man Ford Foundation found no fault with Setalvad, How dare can the dark-brown-skinny man challenge their judgement". Leave alone the fact that Ford is a private foundation, where as GoI represents the will of a billion people.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/20/world/asia/teesta-setalvad-modi-india.html
Soon after, the state of Gujarat joined the rush to jail Ms. Setalvad, recipient of one of India’s highest honors, the Padma Shri Award. The state filed an affidavit in India’s Supreme Court accusing her and her husband, Javed Anand, of perpetrating a “colossal fraud” — to wit, raising $1.1 million “in the name of riot victims” only to siphon most of it to pay themselves exorbitant salaries and splurge on luxuries. The affidavit, while neglecting to mention that the Ford Foundation and other funders have found no evidence of financial wrongdoing, dwelled at length on the couple’s “conspicuous consumption,” noting, for example, that they had eaten at a Subway, and, in boldface type, describing the purchase of sanitary napkins

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby panduranghari » 20 Aug 2015 12:24

If you looked at the U.S. economy under a microscope, what you’d see is a gigantic cancerous blob of cronyism surrounded by tech startups and huge prisons. If you zeroed in on the cancerous tumour, at the nucleus you’d see a network of crony institutions like the Federal Reserve, intelligence agencies, TBTF Wall Street banks and defence contractors. Pretty close to that, you’d probably find the Ford Foundation, Templeton Foundation, Clinton Foundation. A veritable clearinghouse for cronyism masquerading as a charity.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby chetak » 20 Aug 2015 12:46

Vipul wrote:During the Kargil conflict days there were some interesting news reports of what Prem Shankar Jha of ORF was trying to do for Reliance through the Track II contacts on the pakistani side.


there has been a lot of chatter about some very big Indian players paying off paki pigs very high up in the food chain to keep their assets safe in case the sh!te hits the fan. jamnagar airbase is only a very short f-16 ride away. :wink:

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby JE Menon » 20 Aug 2015 13:55

The article in NYT also fails to mention that Modi, who faced probably the most thorough investigation of any politician in history, anywhere, was cleared by all the courts including the Supreme Court.

That would have been inconvenient for the agenda that the article is promoting.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Vipul » 20 Aug 2015 17:39

Chetakji it was more than that. More then a hint was being given to the Pukis on which alternate target was to be used if PAF had the khujli to do a sortie near Jamnagar.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby SaiK » 20 Aug 2015 19:01

http://www.dailyo.in/politics/terrorism ... /5755.html

Are we ready to create 4 paki provinces into 4 new states? and put the state-less under the guns?
the chinese front must be engaged on economic might.. they must go down to struggle for investments. war is only a second option to china.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RoyG » 20 Aug 2015 19:34

The Congress and the other sec-left parties are disintegrating fast and the BJP stands to gain by filling the void. That being said the business interests of elements within Pakistan will be coming to an end. Counterfeit notes, insurgencies, hawala, bollwood, etc. are being threatened as viable productive enterprises. With that in mind, how do these interests proceed to put all the dirty info on corporates, politicians, media personalities, etc. to good use. They've been sitting on it for a very long time. What better way to bring Doval to the table given that Modi, Shah, etc. are focuses on winning elections. Blackmail is a powerful tool and it gives them the ability to keep the border hot and start the mischief deeper within India.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby krithivas » 20 Aug 2015 20:50

^^ Though not right to do so, I don't think BJP is doing enough to engineer faster splits within Congress and The Lefties. Were roles reversed, and PM Indira Gandhi been at the head of the table, she would have aggressively promoted splits within BJP. This was the singular mistake (IMO) of BJP of letting Congress stay as a singular block when PM Vajpayee was the PM. At the end of the day, it is politics, and Congress has degenerated into a Vatican Fronting party. There should be absolutely no political life-lines to enable the Clown Prince or the Dark Horse Princess to find a way back to power.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby Tuvaluan » 20 Aug 2015 23:29

moved from foreign policy thread:

Chanakya wrote:SC is right abt Aadhaar Card not being mandatory.NaMo should have gone for NPR and CIN proposed by NDA-I and replaced by Aadhaar by UPA just like FOIS replaced with RTI.


OT, but want to say a word here. The SC is horribly wrong and hopelessly ignorant in this -- I am glad the PM wisely chose to continue the Aadhaar programs. The same jholawallahs who claim to weep for the poor and identity-less indians numbering in the 100s of millions, are the ones opposing Aadhar. Aadhar is a way of a citizen to authenticate his/her identity with the rent-seeking scum/middlemen in local governments that assume their identity and also steal all the benefits meant for these really poor Indians. The only people who gain from knifing Aadhar are the criminals in politics and bureaucracy, make no mistake - the INC tried to knife Aadhar once they realized what it meant to their long-standing thievery of the public exchequer (i.e., it would put a halt to it) and which is why they offerred Mr. Nilenkani a seat to contest from and removed him from the UIDAI at the same time, and were hopeful that the PM Namo would knife it once he was in office, and thankfully he was much wiser than the rest of the jokers in the BJP who bought into all the FUD without thinking it through, and I mean the likes of Yashwant Sinha whose ridiculous parliamentary committee report on the Aadhar was an utter joke.

No matter how often, Mr. Nilenkani and others in Aadhar state that it is nothing but a unique number that maps a person to his biometrics as an authetication factor verifiable in real time (which needs to be combined with other authentication factors like id cards). All the idiots who write utter nonsense in every single magazine, and I mean the likes of Usha Padmanabhan do not have the faintest idea of how software works and the concept of shared libraries and the meaning of an API -- these jokers are the ones who get quoted as authorities on Aadhar. These ignoramuses are the ones creating a racket about the "violation of privacy" (among other things) by the introduction of Aadhar.

Sorry for OT post, but I would suggest people actually read the UIDAI web page and understand how the tech works before repeating second hand information. India's poor absolutely need a way to prove their identity to banks and other means for joining the Indian economy in a legitimate way, and Aadhar is the answer.

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Re: Indian Interests (09-08-2014)

Postby RoyG » 20 Aug 2015 23:41

Tuvaluan wrote:moved from foreign policy thread:

Chanakya wrote:SC is right abt Aadhaar Card not being mandatory.NaMo should have gone for NPR and CIN proposed by NDA-I and replaced by Aadhaar by UPA just like FOIS replaced with RTI.


OT, but want to say a word here. The SC is horribly wrong and hopelessly ignorant in this -- I am glad the PM wisely chose to continue the Aadhaar programs. The same jholawallahs who claim to weep for the poor and identity-less indians numbering in the 100s of millions, are the ones opposing Aadhar. Aadhar is a way of a citizen to authenticate his/her identity with the rent-seeking scum/middlemen in local governments that assume their identity and also steal all the benefits meant for these really poor Indians. The only people who gain from knifing Aadhar are the criminals in politics and bureaucracy, make no mistake - the INC tried to knife Aadhar once they realized what it meant to their long-standing thievery of the public exchequer (i.e., it would put a halt to it) and which is why they offerred Mr. Nilenkani a seat to contest from and removed him from the UIDAI at the same time, and were hopeful that the PM Namo would knife it once he was in office, and thankfully he was much wiser than the rest of the jokers in the BJP who bought into all the FUD without thinking it through, and I mean the likes of Yashwant Sinha whose ridiculous parliamentary committee report on the Aadhar was an utter joke.

No matter how often, Mr. Nilenkani and others in Aadhar state that it is nothing but a unique number that maps a person to his biometrics as an authetication factor verifiable in real time (which needs to be combined with other authentication factors like id cards). All the idiots who write utter nonsense in every single magazine, and I mean the likes of Usha Padmanabhan do not have the faintest idea of how software works and the concept of shared libraries and the meaning of an API -- these jokers are the ones who get quoted as authorities on Aadhar. These ignoramuses are the ones creating a racket about the "violation of privacy" (among other things) by the introduction of Aadhar.

Sorry for OT post, but I would suggest people actually read the UIDAI web page and understand how the tech works before repeating second hand information. India's poor absolutely need a way to prove their identity to banks and other means for joining the Indian economy in a legitimate way, and Aadhar is the answer.


How secure is this technology? How hard would it be to duplicate cards?


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