The Statesman (India)

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - The Election Commission’s Model Code of Conduct comes into force with the announcement of the poll dates. Parties make their pledges and promises accordingly. But the people can’t be fooled all the time. They do realise that the promises made before the elections are meant to be broken. Then, how can an election become a festival of the masses? The festival of democracy is a veritable horror in certain parts of the country.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - When elections are being conducted for 543 seats in the Lok Sabha, the outcome of a mere seven is unlikely to heavily influence the overall balance of power. Yet when those are the prestigious seats from the Capital they carry decidedly more weight than the numbers might suggest.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - In a major setback to Donald Trump’s foreign policy, the US-led peace process, geared to end nearly 18 years of relentless conflict in Afghanistan, has hit the reefs. This lengthens the loop of US setbacks ever since President George Bush ~ in the aftermath of 9/11 ~ had raided the caves of Tora Bora to “smoke out” Osama bin Laden (October 2001).

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) -Two things – money power and muscle power – are choking Indian elections and the current Lok Sabha polls are no exception. A recent Bloomsburg report notes that Indian elections would be the world’s most expensive polls.The Delhi-based Centre for Media Studies puts an estimate of over Rs 50,000 crore for the current 2019 poll expense, a 40 per cent jump from 2014.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday said that he had warned Pakistan of consequences if they didn’t release Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman from their custody.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - India’s Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale will be on a two-day China visit from Sunday to meet Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi where he is likely to discuss the issue of blacklisting of Pakistan-based terrorist Masood Azhar at a UN panel.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - Amid clashes between the UN-backed Libyan government and the east-based Army in and around the capital Tripoli, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Friday asked the Indians stranded there to leave the city immediately.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - The hard truism is that microfinance has been saddled with misplaced expectations, and we have lost a sense of its more modest, even though critical, potential.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - A direct fallout of the uncertainty that has gripped the bailout package for Pakistan has been Thursday’s rather abrupt resignation of the finance minister, Asad Umar. Ostensibly, he has put in his papers after the cabinet reshuffle and his transfer to the Energy ministry.

NEW DELHI (The Statesman/ANN) - In an interview in his home town Palampur, Shanta Kumar spoke on the current political scenario