Provocative commentaries on international issues, social development, and people and places by a veteran journalist
PranayGupte's Articles » Page 4
January 3, 2009 by PranayGupte
1. Barack Obama will take major steps toward fixing the US economy. But very hard times still lie ahead.

2. Shashi Tharoor will replace Pranab Mukherjee as India's foreign minister.

3. If the Congress wins the national elections in March or April, Indian National Congress Party president Sonia Gandhi will choose Shashi Tharoor as the prime minister.

4. Rahul Singh will get married.

5. Despite the global financial turmoil, the United Arab Emirates will do all right.
December 1, 2008 by PranayGupte
It’s probably unwise, if not unseemly and unkind, to say it, but the terrorism that afflicted Mumbai these last few days is almost certain to have financial implications for India and the United Arab Emirates.

 It isn’t untimely, however, to suggest that those implications could be negative and positive for both countries. Let’s start with tourism, which accounts for nearly 6 percent of India’s trillion-dollar economy. In the short to medium run, tens of thou...
November 28, 2008 by PranayGupte
When I was very young and single and living in New York, I would visit my parents in my native city of Mumbai from time to time. They would predictably make mighty efforts to find a bride for me in the traditional custom of conservative Hindu families. I was, after all, an only child, and it was understandable that my parents dreaded the prospect – however unlikely – that I would wind up with an American spouse.

 An endless procession of eligible Indian women would be brought...
November 27, 2008 by PranayGupte
There’s a major square in South Mumbai – a complex intersection, really – that mirrors the open, secular and trusting society that India has always been.

 In and around the square, there are small haberdasheries run by Hindus and groceries owned by Muslims; there’s a Catholic church; there’s a theater that exhibits brash foreign films, and another one that features Bollywood fare. There are tiny eateries that offer everything from samosas to sandwiches. Ther...
November 25, 2008 by PranayGupte
DUBAI, Nov. 24 – Senior officials and leading business leaders said today that the fundamentals of the economy of the United Arab Emirates were healthy, and that the federation was taking steps to ensure that it would be able to deal adequately with the financial turmoil roiling the global community.

 Those steps include improving the liquidity situation of key real-estate companies in which governmental institutions have a stake, and of locally owned banks. Better governance of th...
November 22, 2008 by PranayGupte
By Francis Matthew, Editor at Large, Gulf News, Dubai
Published: November 19, 2008, 23:15

The UAE has a very young population which has been educated from a curriculum which is global and outward-looking in spirit, in contrast to some other countries in the region which have fostered more conservative and inward-looking schooling or more Islamic curriculums. The widespread awareness of the outside world in the UAE is a vital asset that the country will be able to benefit from in the next few...
November 8, 2008 by PranayGupte
So it has happened, and very early on the morning after history had been made, one of America’s authentic legends, Theodore C. Sorensen, was savoring it all in his lovely apartment overlooking Manhattan’s Central Park.

 A score of close friends had spent the previous evening at his apartment, watching the results of the election that made Barack Obama the 44th president of the United States. The 80-year-old Sorensen, President John Fitzgerald Kennedy’s closest aide, was...
November 4, 2008 by PranayGupte
NEW YORK, November 4 – I wanted to be a witness to history. That’s why I decided to fly 7,000 miles from my new home in Dubai to my old home in America.

 I could have cast an absentee ballot in the American presidential election, of course – the United States Consulate is in the building next to where I live on Sheikh Zayed Road. But I flew back in order to vote in person. I flew back to see for myself what it would be like when Americans choose a new president after wh...
November 4, 2008 by PranayGupte
I flew 7,000 miles to America from Dubai in order to vote in the US presidential election. I could have cast an absentee ballot, but I wanted to come home to Brooklyn and be part of history.
October 18, 2008 by PranayGupte
In early October, I decided to take a short break and flew to the country of my birth, India. Although I hold a United States passport, I visit India frequently; and over a career of more than four decades in international journalism, I have written about India often; these writings include columns and books.

In New Delhi, I went with my friends Sunita Kohli and her husband Romesh to the home of Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Isher Ahluwalia. Montek is deputy chairman of India's Planning Commissi...
September 18, 2008 by PranayGupte
One thread linking my student days to the present has been Gary Trudeau's wonderful Doonesbury cartoon panel seven days a week. What an extraordinary gift he has for trenchant political and sociological commentary!
September 17, 2008 by PranayGupte
It's fascinating to see all these polls showing the fortunes (or misfortunes) of the presidential candidates. But just who do the pollsters call? Who qualifies to be a respondent? What about American citizens living abroad?
September 10, 2008 by PranayGupte
EIA estimates that members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) earned $671 billion in net oil export revenues in 2007, a 10 percent increase from 2006. Saudi Arabia earned the largest share of these earnings, $194 billion, representing 29 percent of total OPEC revenues. On a per-capita basis, OPEC net oil export earning reached $1,137, a 8 percent increase from 2006. Through August, OPEC had earned an estimated $740 billion in net oil exp...
July 25, 2008 by PranayGupte
I watched an extraordinary video that celebrated India's diversity and secularism. Produced by Durga Jasraj and Vikram Shankar, it features lyrics by Javed Akhtar, and performances by everyday Indians and by maestros such as Pandit Jasraj. Truly moving, beautifully photographed. The team behind Durga and Vikram, Arts & Artistes, is inventive and highly motivated. Besides films, the group produces a variety of concerts and other events. Ah, the energy, resourcefulness and determination of you...
June 27, 2008 by PranayGupte
The single most significant aspect of this book is that it's under the byline of Kamal Nath, arguably India's most talented and resourceful politician since Independence. In fact, he's 61 years old -- just a year older than Modern India, which was carved out of the British Raj in 1947. 

There are those who predict that he will some day be the country's prime minister, and, indeed, some of his friends are already canvassing in his behalf. Mr. Nath's intrinsic decency and good nature make ...