Battle for Bihar: On Assembly polls

The Assembly election in Bihar will be taking place in unprecedented circumstances over three phases, in the last week of October and the first week of November. This will be the first Assembly election since COVID-19 disrupted normal life, and the performance of the governments on the health and economic fronts will become an issue in the election campaign. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s record of 15 years is mixed. After initial improvements in governance after he took over in 2005, there was an evident downslide, culminating in the bungled handling of the pandemic. He deserted the BJP in 2013 and won the 2015 Assembly election in alliance with the RJD, only to return to the BJP’s embrace soon. His popularity is waning, while the BJP is on the defensive on questions of border security, economic stagnation, and farmer backlash. The State and the Centre, jointly and separately, mismanaged the return of migrant workers from other States to Bihar during the lockdown. They have held

Salutary lesson: On the Vodafone case

Vodafone Group Plc has won yet another round in its 13-year-long battle with India’s tax authorities. On Friday, an international arbitration tribunal ruled that the Indian government’s efforts to claim more than ₹20,000 crore in tax (including related interest and penalties) from Vodafone using retrospective legislation was in clear breach of the ‘fair and equitable treatment’ protections afforded under Article 4(1) of the Bilateral Investment Treaty between India and the Netherlands. The ruling upholding the British multinational’s stand ought to end India’s protracted and often perverse pursuit of what at the very outset was a highly contentious claim. The dispute began in September 2007 when tax authorities served a demand on Vodafone International Holdings BV for tax that it said Vodafone’s Dutch unit ought to have withheld while acquiring the controlling stake in the erstwhile Hutchison Essar Ltd. from Hutchison Telecommunications International Ltd. Since the stake purchase
Lead

Growth compulsions, fiscal arithmetic

C. Rangarajan D.K. Srivastava
Lead

Diagnosing what ails medical education

George Thomas
 
Comment

Where is the sentinel guarding our rights?

Dushyant Dave

The devil is in the detail

A.S. Panneerselvan

When food arguments escalate into bitter war

Ruchir Joshi

Dealing in virtual reality – both on and off the cricket field

Suresh Menon
 
Open Page

To all the ‘Thangavelus’ out there

S.G. Vombatkere
 
Open Page

The price of extra kilos

Sarangapani Bashyam
 
Open Page

Don’t break the ground rules

Sharada Natarajan