May 27, 1998 |
In a sign of spreading international protest over India's recent nuclear weapons tests, the World Bank postponed action Tuesday on more than $800 million in development loans to New Delhi after the United States and its allies threatened to block them. Without specifically mentioning the nuclear testing issue, the bank issued a statement saying it had decided to put off any vote on the four lending packages after several of its board members requested the delay.
May 14, 1998 |
President Clinton's announcement Wednesday of tough sanctions against India jeopardizes billions of dollars in U.S. trade and investment in that populous nation, a blow to U.S. companies already hurting from the financial crisis in Asia. U.S. government officials and business executives were scrambling to assess the impact of the sanctions, which include a ban on the sale of military goods and technology, a cutoff of U.S.
March 29, 1998 |
India's Hindu nationalist party narrowly won its first vote of confidence in Parliament on Saturday after leaders promised to moderate its aggressive religious policies to embrace a broad-based government. The vote means that the new coalition government put together by Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party, can stay in power--a relief to a country that has seen five governments in the last two years.
March 20, 1998 |
Atal Behari Vajpayee, the country's new Hindu nationalist prime minister, took office after assembling a diverse Cabinet. "I have a pledge to redeem, I have a promise to fulfill," Vajpayee told reporters as he walked to his new office in New Delhi after he and 42 ministers were sworn in. Vajpayee, a 71-year-old moderate member of the Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, kept the Foreign Ministry for himself.
March 16, 1998 |
India's Hindu nationalists were asked to form a government here late Sunday, all but ensuring that they will take charge of the world's most populous democracy and rein in their staunchly sectarian agenda. Atal Behari Vajpayee, leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, was invited by President Kocheril Raman Narayanan to lead the fifth Indian government in two years.
March 15, 1998 |
The Congress (I) Party on Saturday picked the Italian-born widow of assassinated Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi as its new president. Though Sonia Gandhi has hardly any political experience and has not outlined any particular vision for India, she is a member of the family that ruled the nation for most of its 50 years of independence and is thus immensely popular. Party insiders have been pushing for her appointment as Congress president since her husband's 1991 assassination.
March 4, 1998 |
Hindu nationalists surged but fell short of a majority Tuesday in ballot-counting after India's parliamentary elections, all but ensuring a future of weak, unstable governments for this country of 970 million people. The Bharatiya Janata Party, whose pro-Hindu agenda threatened to ignite ancient communal tensions, is certain to emerge as the largest party in Parliament by the time all 300 million-plus votes are tallied.
March 1, 1998 |
Voting ended a staggered election for India's next government in all but a handful of remote districts, with exit polls Saturday suggesting stronger support for Hindu nationalists. Seven people were killed in election-related violence Saturday, bringing the death toll to at least 75 since elections began Feb. 16, but the day's violence was mild compared with other voting days.
February 14, 1998 |
Shankar Prasad Jaiswal, member of Parliament, sits cross-legged on a floor of hardened cow dung, shoves handfuls of rice into his mouth, shares a smile with the male members of this central Indian village and lets out a self-satisfied belch. "People vote for me because I eat their food," said Jaiswal of the Bharatiya Janata Party. "Last time I won by 100,000 votes. This time I'll win by 200,000."
January 30, 1998 |
With one of the century's great freedom struggles nearly behind him, Mohandas K. Gandhi looked to India's future and glimpsed his own irrelevance. "Everybody is eager to garland my photos and statues," the Hindu leader said seven months before his assassination on Jan. 30, 1948. "But nobody wants to follow my advice." The frail, bespectacled prophet of nonviolent revolution still dominates India's consciousness.