26/01/2017 8:09 AM IST | Updated 26/01/2017 9:19 AM IST

The Morning Wrap: We Need More Democracy, Says President Pranab Mukherjee; Trump Signs Order For US-Mexico Wall

Our selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers.

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The Morning Wrap is HuffPost India's selection of interesting news and opinion from the day's newspapers. Subscribe here to receive it in your inbox each weekday morning.

Essential HuffPost

Against the backdrop of upcoming elections and the ongoing efforts for a demonetised economy, President Pranab Mukherjee addressed the nation saying that India's strength lies in its pluralism and diversity. India needs "more democracy" he said in his Republic Day speech.

Over 20 soldiers from the 4 Para and 9 Para (Special Forces), who carried out the surgical strikes inside Pakistan last September in retaliation to the Uri Brigade attack, have been given gallantry medals this year. Read the full story here.

Actor Bobby Deol made his debut in Raj Kumar Santoshi's hit Barsaat in 1995 and appeared in many hits from the 1990s, like Gupt, Aur Pyaar Ho Gaya, and Solider. Then he seemed to have vanished for years. Read our big interview with him about the loss of stardom, his plans to revive it and who he blames it all for.

Main News

A much-curtailed Padma awards list this year is marked by the domination of the second highest honour by politicians, with four of the seven Padma Vibhushans being bagged by veteran leaders, including the BJP's Murli Manohar Joshi, NCP's Sharad Pawar, ex-chief minister of Madhya Pradesh Sunderlal Patwa and former Lok Sabha Speaker and Meghalaya chief minister PA Sangma. The last two were honoured posthumously.

President Donald Trump moved aggressively to tighten the nation's immigration policies Wednesday, signing executive actions to jump-start construction of a US-Mexico border wall and block federal grants from immigrant-protecting "sanctuary cities".

Over 80 employees of the Shillong Raj Bhavan, from officers to peons, have sent a five-page letter to the Prime Minister's Office and to the Rashtrapati Bhavan demanding the immediate removal of Meghalaya Governor V Shanmuganathan. He is allegedly involved in misconduct and indecorous behaviour at the Raj Bhavan.

Off The Front Page

Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building in Dubai, was lit up in the tri-colours — saffron, white and green — to celebrate India's 68th Republic Day, showcasing strong cultural and trade bond between India and the UAE. The Prince of Abu Dhabi will be the guest of honour at this Republic Day celebrations.

For the first time in Punjab, a candidate under the "other" gender category is contesting the Assembly elections. Mumtaz, the only transgender candidate out of the 1,145 in the fray, is the Bahujan Samajwadi Party candidate from Bhucho Mandi constituency.

Sweden terminated investigation into the Bofors arms scandal in an attempt to shield Rajiv Gandhi from embarrassment as it felt further probe may throw up more revelations of bribes to Indian officials in the deal, a declassified CIA report has said.


Republic Day comes the day after National Voters' Day. The link between the two is conceptually and historically appropriate. While accepting universal suffrage during the nationalist movement may have been a nod to the democratic spirit of India, are elections being celebrated more over democracy these days? Read Pratap Bhanu Mehta's analysis in The Indian Express.

Rajesh Kumar makes a case against universal basic income in Mint. The government has been misallocating funds for years now, he writes, but there's no reason to continue doing so, albeit more efficiently. "Instead, the government should focus on increasing the use of conditional cash transfers with better targeting," he adds, "which will not only help the poor but will also plug leakages."

In The Telegraph, Swapan Dasgupta analyses the changes in the geopolitical scene with the ascension of Donald Trump to the office of the President of United States. Taking note of the reaction on media, social media and the streets, he looks closely at how this might affect Indian politics.

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