Speaking Of Asia: Goodbye, India. Hello, Hindustan?

First Kashmir, then Ayodhya, and now the controversial change to India's citizenship law - the moves raise concerns about the Modi government's push for a Hindu nation


A decade ago, the headlines about India were all about scandals tumbling out of the closet of the Congress Party-led coalition that governed the country then. Everyone except the scholarly Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and a handful of others, it seemed, had their hand in the cookie jar one way or the other. Headlines screamed government paralysis.

But importantly, there was a cookie jar. The services and consumption-led economy was expanding at a fast clip, foreign direct investments continued to flow in and the unemployment situation did not seem so dire. Communal relations were stable. It helped that the country was run by a Sikh premier who took orders from a Roman Catholic party-and-coalition chief, and a Muslim was vice-president.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 20, 2019, with the headline 'Goodbye, India. Hello, Hindustan?'. Subscribe