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Republic Day went by with the usual celebrations, but even though our security forces put up a dazzling show, the tableaux were less than inspiring. Could we not up our game with the floats at a time when school children are capable of delivering more imaginative displays at a nominal budget? No wonder Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar dozed off in the middle of the proceedings.
Facing sexual harassment charges, Meghalaya Governor V Shanmuganathan finally resigned after a section of the Raj Bhavan employees demanded his removal from office for "seriously compromising" the dignity of the gubernatorial office.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is likely to borrow more than originally planned when he presents the budget on February 1, senior aides and officials said, despite counting on revenues from a national sales tax whose launch date is still unknown.
A day after a major lost his life in a snowslide in Jammu and Kashmir's Sonmarg, 10 soldiers were killed and four went missing after two avalanches hit the Gurez sector of the valley, an Army officer said. Gurez and Sonmarg are avalanche-prone sectors where 16 soldiers were killed and four injured in two such incidents in March 2012.
Two Pakistani teenagers, arrested for their alleged involvement in the terror attack on an Army camp in Uri last year, are likely to be cleared of terrorism charges, a senior government official told The Hindu. They could be booked under milder Sections for illegally crossing over to India instead.
Appointments recently cleared by the National Democratic Alliance's Appointments Committee of the Cabinet have at least 10 politicians affiliated with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as independent directors on the boards of top public sector companies. BJP's Delhi unit vice president Shazia Ilmi, Gujarat IT cell convenor Rajika Kacheria, BJP's Asifa Khan in Gujarat, former BJP MLA from Odisha, Surama Padhy, and former Bihar MLC Kiran Ghai Sinha are some of them.
Off The Front Page
Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati announced the merger of gangster-turned-politician Mukhtar Ansari's Quami Ekta Dal (QED) with her party and gave tickets to him and two of his family members, a move that signals her strong desire to woo the minority vote.
Accusing the BJP of "backstabbing" his party and saying he was "not going to go with a begging bowl to anyone", Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray called off the Sena's alliance with the BJP. He said his party would contest elections to urban bodies in Mumbai and elsewhere in Maharashtra on its own.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said he had scrapped plans to meet Donald Trump next week after the US President tweeted that Mexico should cancel the meeting if it was not prepared to pay for his proposed border wall.
Former chief election commissioner Navin B Chawla establishes the relationship between criminality and politics in the Hindustan Times. "Power and criminality [has] now began to feed one upon the other with the result that criminality within political ranks, instead of lessening for any fear of 'name and shame', actually increased its appeal," he writes during a historical and contemporary survey of such structures.
In Mint, Aurodeep Nandi looks back on the Nawab of Awadh's fiscal policies during the devastating famine in the 1780s to suggest contemporary lessons for the framers of the Union budget. "Government spending need not always lead to amplified growth," he writes. "Debt sustainability aside, spending in the form of freebies and handouts raises aggregate demand and in the process could push up inflation."
With the United Arab Emirates getting closer to India, Pakistan's ruling elites must come to terms with new regional and global realities, where their friends are now befriending their rival, writes Husain Haqqani in The Indian Express.
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