A selection of the best news reports, analysis and opinions published by ThePrint this week.
The Modi government had a rare chance to reform and modernise India’s military. But it blew the opportunity and settled instead for tinkering, says Shekhar Gupta in his weekly column, National Interest. Equipment and hardware lags are important but a much bigger loss is the opportunity for structural reform, he argues.
Modi today is not half as strong as 2014 but the only reason he will win 2019 nevertheless is Rahul Gandhi, who is not even trying to win, writes Shivam Vij. Ever since the Congress’ historic low in 2014, Gandhi has not been able to convince voters that he has a vision for the people of this country.
The Indian Army first sought to replace INSAS after Kargil, when soldiers reported jamming, heavy recoil and cracked fibre glass magazines in the weapon, and the quest is still on. Meanwhile, in an irony of sorts, a hi-tech one will be made near the Chambal ravines in Madhya Pradesh, reports Sujan Dutta. Interestingly, the guns being made in the Chambal have been notorious through the 1970s and the 1980s for dacoits wielding country-made firearms, he adds.
In what became the talk of the town all of last week, Kritika Sharma reported how one of the six universities declared top-notch by the Modi government does not even exist. Read this story to know how the Jio Institute — granted the coveted Institute of Eminence tag — will have far greater autonomy from government regulators as compared to most institutions even though it is yet to start its operations.
A departmental inquiry started against him for an innocuous tweet was “an opportunity to reopen the debate around primitive service rules for government employees”, IAS officer Shah Faesal told Mahrukh Inayet and Sanya Dhingra in an interview. “Public policy is not divine revelation that it can’t be questioned. Government employees can’t be asked to vacate the intellectual space because a primitive rule somewhere says that they should be anonymous and their comments can be viewed as critical of the government of the day,” he said.
Financial constraints have compelled the Indian Army to shelve all new raisings for a China-specific Mountain Strike Corps, Sujan Dutta reported. In effect, the decision has placed the corps, as originally conceived, in cold storage.
Pakistani leader Imran Khan’s ex-wife has made a jaw-dropping claim in her new book. Imran has an Indian child or two, British-Pakistani journalist Reham Khan, has revealed in her autobiography, writes Shivam Vij. What’s more, he could have had an affair with one of the sexiest Indian heroines of the ’70s.