Q. In your book, you tell us stories of how everyone— Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Gulzar—had agreed to work with you almost instantly. What led to this, do you think, your personality or your talent?
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SUKHBIR'S COMEBACK QUEST
On September 3, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) chief Sukhbir Singh Badal suspended his statewide tour, ‘Gall Punjab Di (conversations about Punjab)’, in which he meant to cover about a hundred of the state’s 117 assembly seats.
The change of guard at the top had two primary objectives: winning over the Patidars and tackling disaffection in the BJP ranks. Can new chief minister Bhupendra Patel keep the BJP’s ranks together until the election in 2022?
“WE HAVE FOCUSED ON BRINGING CHANGE ON THE GROUND”
The Covid pandemic did not spare Himachal Pradesh. Tourism in the state was hit hard, but the apple economy mitigated some of the damage. Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, 56, spoke to Group Editorial Director Raj Chengappa and Senior Editor Anilesh S. Mahajan on the impressive progress his government has made in vaccinating its citizens and sounds confident that tourism and other state industries will soon be running at full steam. Excerpts:
THE DEFENCE MINISTRY’S AMBITIOUS PLAN FOR A SECOND PRODUCTION LINE TO BUILD SUBMARINES, FIGHTER JETS, BATTLE TANKS AND HELICOPTERS STUTTERS IN THE SLOW LANE
DIDI MEANS BUSINESS
It took more than a decade and three back-to-back assembly wins for the Mamata Banerjee government to roll out the red carpet again for the Tatas. Mamata came to power on the back of a farmers’ movement in Nandigram-Singur against the land acquisition for the Tata Nano factory (2006-08), and it hasn’t been easy for her government to shed the anti-industry image it acquired in the bargain.
BIG BROTHER'S SHADOW
AN UPBEAT BJP HAS AN ‘ATMANIRBHAR’ PLAN FOR THE 2025 BIHAR ASSEMBLY POLL. THE TWO CURRENT DEPUTY CHIEF MINISTERS ARE SETTING THE STAGE FOR THIS
ADDED BENEFITS, HIDDEN COSTS?
MAKING FORTIFIED RICE A NATIONAL STANDARD IS A WELL-INTENTIONED MOVE, BUT EXPERTS WARN OF THE RISKS OF OVERDOSING ON MICRONUTRIENTS
A WILD WIND FROM WESTERN UP
AS THE REGION’S JATS AND MUSLIMS UNITE AGAINST THE CENTRE’S FARM POLICIES, THEY POSE A CHALLENGE TO THE RULING BJP’S PROSPECTS AHEAD OF THE 2022 UP ELECTION
War Or Peace?
On September 11, the Assam government extended the ‘disturbed area’ status of the state by another six months under AFSPA or the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958. While the state government is yet to give a reason for the extension, the move has come at a time when the central and state governments, both led by the BJP, have been making regular claims that peace has returned to the northeastern state.
Asset Monetisation: The Big Push
The Modi government hopes to raise Rs 6 lakh crore over the next four years by ‘monetising’ public sector assets—leasing them out to the private sector for long-term operations. Can it deliver on this game-changing idea?