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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Dec 2014

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SpiceJet's turbulence is far from over

The airline industry, the world over, is prone to spectacular booms and busts. That India is no exception is borne out by what has been happening to SpiceJet, a once-promising budget carrier that is now struggling to take off.

The Cold War finally ends: US policy was misguided on Cuba

Barack Obama recently agreed a landmark climate deal with China, passed executive orders on immigration and has now taken the historic decision to establish full diplomatic ties with Cuba.
The winters have been late this year but many have already died in north India. According to the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board, 3,500 homeless people died in the city due to cold last winter.
India must be mindful of Pakistani machinations and demonstrate that it can decisively secure its interests in Afghanistan -- considered the ‘gateway to Central and South Asia’, writes Amitabh Mathur.
The disappointing negotiations and the inadequate agreement signed at the annual UN climate change conference COP 20 in Lima, Peru, have once again delayed the urgent action on mitigating climate change and enhanced the uncertainty of outcomes.
The attack has demonstrated that the Taliban nexus remains equipped with a fighting force to strike at vulnerable targets, especially institutions associated with the military, writes Razeshta Sethna.
Pakistan's Deep State must realise that it cannot be that the Talibani ranks are terrorists and the armed Lashkar foot soldiers are freedom fighters. It cannot be that the Tehreek-e-Taliban is bad and the Lashkar is good.
A day after we were reassured that there is some hope in the world — with Australia standing up for Muslims in solidarity during and after the Sydney hostage crisis through Twitter hashtag #illridewithyou — it all came crashing down, writes Osama Salman.

The people of J&K will rebuff attempts to define India narrowly and assert their right to negotiate relations with New Delhi.

The second anniversary of the December 16 gang rape in Delhi is a time for sober-reflection. The criminal justice system continues to fail women as do policies of the NDA, writes Vrinda Grover.
Put an end to the abusive system that locks up women with psychosocial or intellectual disabilities.
Women’s safety cannot be only about stringent laws, their time-bound implementation, enhanced policing, plugging the gaps in the criminal justice system. It must necessarily address values, beliefs and notions that men hold.
My column this week is an unusual one — I wish to salute Rakesh Maria and his exemplary force of police officers, both men and women. I salute the Bombay Police once again.
The current RS impasse is a reflection of the furious unfolding of the Modi govt’s ‘lethal cocktail’ — selling grandiose illusions of ‘prosperity’ through ‘development’ while unleashing rabid communal polarisation, writes Sitaram Yechury.
The Indian quest for national pride is meaningless. Sometimes comical as was evident from its hosting of the C’wealth Games. But, usually destructive, writes Manu Joseph.
It is clear that India needs to be proactive about a new online global culture and evolve a new legal framework that guards free speech while ensuring security and responsibility, writes N Madhavan.
Political parties, especially those in power, should educate their ministers, legislators and workers on decency and decorum in public life, writes Chanakya.
Given that you can vote at 18 and, second, given that in six states you can drink at 18 and in 12 at 21, why should one have to wait till 25 to smoke? Asks Karan Thapar.
Very tricky characters, our cute Indian kids. You never know what they’ll be up to next. In 2013, guess what they did — 1.3 million of the little blighters died before reaching their fifth birthday. That’s 3,561 of them popping off every day, 148 every hour. Now what on earth do they mean by doing that?
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