A bib­lio­phile

Business Standard - - DEMOCRACY AT WORK -

Pres­i­dent of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani, was in for a rap­tur­ous wel­come in Delhi re­cently es­pe­cially by the In­dia Foun­da­tion which has strong affin­ity to the Na­tional Demo­cratic Al­liance (NDA) gov­ern­ment. Trade Min­is­ter Suresh Prabhu and Tele­com Min­is­ter Rav­is­hankar Prasad of­fered all pos­si­ble help from In­dia in the fields of in­fra­struc­ture and hu­man cap­i­tal train­ing. But Ghani, him­self an aca­demic sin­gled out Min­is­ter of state for ex­ter­nal af­fairs, MJ Ak­bar, whose books, he said pub­licly, he read with en­joy­ment and won­der. Ghani be­gan his re­marks by re­call­ing, pre­dictably, Ra­bindranath Tagore’s

Kab­u­li­wal­lah. Ghani stud­ied at New York’s Columbia Univer­sity and dur­ing the Soviet oc­cu­pa­tion of Afghanistan in the 1980s, taught at sev­eral Amer­i­can uni­ver­si­ties.

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