Politics & the Nation
  • What an exciting time!
    • Having secured a substantial mandate, the Congress party is savouring every moment of it.  The allies are falling over each other to announce support for the party.  Parties, which till the other day have demanded more than their fair share of flesh have now fallen by the wayside and Congress is in a position to pick and choose its allies to form the government.
    • Happy days for the business and foreign affairs front can surely be expected.  With the hurdles being kept by megalomaniacal allies out of the way, the Congress party can now articulate a strong foreign policy and also go ahead with the reforms without any fear.  This will, in no small measure ensure India being seen as a safe investment destination by the world at large.  All the best to it.
  • If you are asked to put forth your demands for governance from the prime minister, would they look like this?
    • Now is the time for him to do the things expected of a man with his reformist credentials: dismantle the APM for oil, disinvest PSUs, raise the limit for FDI, reform the labour market, the police and the judiciary and, most of all, improve governance. Seize the opportunity!
Finance & Economy
  • What is the state of the economy as the new government is poised to take charge?
    • Take a look at this article that is peppered with lot of graphics.  It gives you a thorough perspective of things as they stand today.  A must read.
  • With all the election result hang up there is not really much that we could cover in today's finance & economy section.  It is all about expectations and aspirations of various sectors of the economy from the incoming government.
  • LTTE silenced?
    • Looks like it's the end of the road for LTTE.  With unconfirmed reports of the LTTE chief committing suicide or about his body having been found and its web site announcing that it is time silence the guns for the sake of Tamil civilians, it appears that one of the longest and bloody wars in our neighbourhood has finally come to an end.
    • This is one more development that is a cause for cheer.  Though it is time for the Sri Lankan government to recognize that it has to be magnanimous in its victory and genuinely ensure some devolution of powers for its Tamil civilians.
  • Tennis
    • In the midst of all the IPL brouhaha we have certainly missed a rare event.
    • The win of Federer over Nadal on a clay court.  That too in Madrid open!  What a feat!  
    • The win should be really very sweet for Federer as he beat the Spaniard in straight sets 6-4, 6-4 to clinch the title.
Language lessons
  • praxis: Noun
    • Translating an idea into action
    • eg: The defeat means that nothing short of a complete re-evaluation in its praxis is needed within the Left.
  • opprobrium: Noun
    • State of disgrace resulting from public abuse; A state of extreme dishonour
    • eg: While the Congress has been the target of much opprobrium from its political rivals for upholding the Nehru-Gandhi clan’s supremacy, very few parties — if any — have shunned the family factor in the race for seats.
  • naïve : Adjective
    • Marked by or showing unaffected simplicity and lack of guile or worldly experience
    • eg: At a time when gross market borrowings are already slated to touch Rs 4.01 lakh crore, it is naïve to assume government will be able to borrow more without serious (adverse) repercussions. 
  • acolyte: Noun
    • Someone who assists a priest or minister in a liturgical service; follower (colloquial)
    • eg: Mr Modi was casting his long shadow over the election campaign, collecting in the process acolytes in the party already rooting for him as the natural candidate for the office of PM.
  • cognoscenti: Noun
    • An expert able to appreciate a field; especially in the fine arts
    • eg: But few, even among the cognoscenti, comprehend the need for financial security.