Indian History Happens Elsewhere | By Amitava KumarConcerning the trial of Tahawwur Rana at a federal court in Chicago
'The arrival of immigrants like myself here in the US doesn’t mean that we are the only ones acquiring new knowledge or identities. While writing my last book, I went to the offices of the US attorneys who had prosecuted a Pakistani man for supporting terrorism inside Indian Punjab. Near the desk of the Assistant US Attorney, Kelly Currie, was a picture of his office-mates in the Golden Temple in Amritsar. In the photograph, the Americans were sitting in the langar with their heads covered in the traditional Sikh manner'
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- The India Site's ''Top Ten" data visualizations! Like 'Cost of the war on terror' and 'Top 5 motives for murder in India'
J. Jayalalithaa and Sasikala: The Big Break-Up | By Nandini Krishnan
'In most photographs and videos of Jayalalithaa, a dour-faced woman wearing an expression not unlike that of an anxious grandmother watching a toddler bumble about the garden, can be spotted somewhere in the frame. She is Sasikala Natarajan, the close aide and best friend of the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. Some believe she’s also the CM’s puppet master. Often seen whispering furtively to Jayalalithaa, occasionally caught smiling, and never interviewed, the wary-looking Sasikala was her most – perhaps her only – trusted lieutenant. On 19 December, 2011, a terse statement was issued from the office of Jayalalithaa. She had expelled Sasikala and 11 of her relatives from the AIADMK party “with immediate effect”...' (The India Site)Part I of Krishna Kavita Kasturi's account of teaching Indian languages and culture to American diplomats
Everybody asks me how I landed my job. That is because, in the National Capital Region of Washington DC, I get to speak my mother tongue, wear my native attire and am paid to wax forth on my motherland & its shenanigans for five days a week (Telugu, sari, India).
Patrick French talking about India: A Portrait
The FountainheadA review of Orientalist Jones | By Keerthik Sasidharan
'In this handsomely produced biography, Michael J. Franklin eschews the low hanging fruit of easy moralizing on the early and rapacious days of the East India Company. Instead, he aims for something higher but more difficult to achieve: to narrate the man into existence. He patiently uncovers Sir William Jones’s early years as a fatherless child, a precocious teenager, an ambitious young man, and an imaginative translator of Persian, and then slowly brings him to the shores of India where his life’s works would emerge.'
Does God Have A Caste?...asks Meena Kandasamy
'What was our crime? We had portrayed two Tamil folk deities, Ponnar and Sankar, as “Dalit brothers.” A non-Indian parallel might illustrate this story better: An African-American leader says Jesus Christ was Black, and a White man takes him to court for causing communal disharmony. Would we not readily label the White man a racist and a supremacist?'Part II of KK Kasturi's story
No, we don’t ask if a woman is pregnant unless it is obviously evident that she is, although we are an extremely nosy kind of people otherwise. No, we don’t ever divide the bill/check at the restaurant under the waiter’s nose as he watches, smirking at your tight-fistedness. Oh! Please remember to always share whatever you eat, will you? But not if you have already tasted it: that would be inappropriate … But (is now a good time to talk about caste?) No, we don’t really understand what you mean by “space”, physical or mental. Emotional space? Ayiyyo! who wants THAT? Is it why Americans have so many psychological issues?A Wicked Leak: Stratfor, Dow Chemicals, and India | By Ulrik McKnight
'Union Carbide India Limited’s 1984 Bhopal pesticide plant leak is one of the worst industrial accidents in history, killing 4,000 people overnight and leaving 500,000 severely ill. The accident site has still not been cleaned up, victims continue to die in many thousands, and to suffer in hundreds of thousands ... The Stratfor materials reveal that over an extended period of time, Dow has employed Stratfor to produce intelligence reports on Bhopal activists. This was not a one off piece of analysis, but an ongoing, multi-year, and presumably very expensive campaign.'
Vishal Come Home | By Sonia FaleiroThe story of a missing boy
‘We worked hard,’ said Vishal. ‘We swept train carriages, we scavenged for empty bottles we sold to the kabaddiwala ... Who notices small boys? People thought we were beggars.’ Each boy carried one steel tiffin box of the sort children take to school packed with sabzi-parantha lunches. Except that each of the tiffin boxes was packed with heroin. Afterwards they hopped a train back to Jodhpur.
KeywordsAarushi BJP black money Bollywood business caste china Congress Party corruption cricket Dalit economics Education environment family politics foreign ministry gold Gujarat health Hindu terror India Indian Muslims Kashmir legal Mahatma Gandhi Manmohan Singh Maoists media Mumbai music Muslims NRI Pakistan people police politics poverty religion society Telangana Telecom terrorism USA weird Wikileaks India
"There is however one truly strange thing about the supposedly liberal vision of Hinduism that has been offered by writers crusading against the Hindu right. Their worldview seems to have little respect, if not consideration, for how Hindus themselves see their religion"
- Zahra Shahid Hussain, vice president of the Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaf, gunned down outside her house by killer on a motorbike
- Should a Bombay artist be permitted to paint nude pictures of his estranged wife? “The wife had alleged offences against her artist husband Chintan Upadhyay under Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act for painting her in the buff”
- Tahawwur Rana - Headley's accomplice - sentenced to 14 years in jail by US court for providing "material support to Pakistan-based LeT and for backing a plot to strike a Danish newspaper"
- Pakistan's Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar accuses India of war-mongering: “It is deeply disturbing to hear statements which are upping the ante where one politician is competing with the other to give a more hostile statement”
- Praveen Swami on the runaway grandmother... "A relatively innocuous incident spiralled into a series of murderous clashes, before culminating in the killing of Lance-Naik Sudhakar Singh and Lance-Naik Hemraj. Both armies, the officials said, engaged in aggressive action, driven by the still-fraught situation on the Line of Control"
- Unliked other protestors, Andhra Pradesh MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi avoids questioning over hate speech because of 'internal pain' .... "The dichotomy in treating powerful politicians is blatant in Owaisi's case"
- "The coveted Birkin has become the Black Label Scotch in India. Just like India sells and consume more Black-Label than it’s produced in Scotland, the number of Bag-Hags flaunting their Birkin are more than the bags sold by Hermes"
- India's "mountain of coal problems" which come from "essentially a combination of misgovernance, apathy and neglect of the entire sector" - don't miss the striking photos!
- Felicitations to the new DMK leader (son of the father!) “I will dedicate myself to the cause of betterment of Dalits till the last. The question that naturally arises is who will be after me, and you should not forget that the answer is M.K. Stalin,” Mr. Karunanidhi said while admitting a section of Pattali Makkal Katchi workers of Vellore district in to the DMK
- In her blog post titled “First posting as District Collector”, Ms Shubhra writes how people have such low expectations from administration that “even the most mundane thing I would do here would be huge for them. I inspected a Block Resource Center of SSA where training of teachers was going on. As expected, most teachers were absent. I took immediate action against the teachers. When I came out, people there were shouting slogans... 'ziladhikari Shravasti zindabad'. I felt humbled to my core”
- "The protestors who gathered to demand better policing weren’t pleading before dynastic icons with folded hands. They were self-confident, angry and exasperated. They represented a new, assertive and even insolent India ... Their demands are a key element of modern politics: the expectation that the state will be responsive and efficient. The chalta hai fatalism of an earlier age has been replaced by a voluble rejection of a meek theek hai"
- C. Rammanohar Reddy asks, 'How is India doing?' | "In the end, one of the achievements of electoral democracy and the working of the Constitution is that the citizen knows she has rights and will fight for them, however much she may despair at not being able to exercise them"
- Big Sister is watching you in West Bengal | "The Mamata Banerjee government has decided to introduce hidden cameras to record the ins and outs of employees in government offices to ensure they reach by 10.30am. The pilot project will be tried in the new year at the West Bengal Essential Supplies Corporation"
- Railway attendant "beaten, forced to hold his both ear to do sit-ups more than 50 times and was also made hostage in the running Punjab Mail train compartment between Rampur and Lucknow stations" by UP minister Azam Khan
- Modi takes it away: '“You have given me power. Now you also give me your blessings so that I do not commit any mistake, no one is hurt and there is no mistake by me even unknowingly. When people, who are in fact God give their blessings, there is no possibility of a mistake,” the Gujarat Chief Minister said'
- 'Is there a long-term pattern in Indian capitalism? When did major breaks occur in that pattern? And does history shed light on economic changes in the present? “India in the World Economy” answers these questions'
- The life of a worker from Faridabad, now in Gurgaon | "To work nights means enormous difficulties – lack of sleep, not being able to sleep during the day, not eating properly, no time to meet friends. If you refuse, they tell you to quit the job"
- Now the babus go after Flipkart and Walmart | "The government on Wednesday told Parliament that investigation into alleged FEMA violations in the Bharti-Walmart joint venture had been referred to the Enforcement Directorate"