Arundhati Roy, the Not-So-Reluctant Renegade
By SIDDHARTHA DEB
“I’ve always been slightly short with people who say, ‘You haven’t written anything again,’ as if all the nonfiction I’ve written is not writing,” Arundhati Roy said.
It was July, and we were sitting in Roy’s living room, the windows closed against the heat of the Delhi summer. Delhi might be roiled over a slowing economy, rising crimes against women and the coming elections, but in Jor Bagh, an upscale residential area across from ... Read More
NATIONAL CONVENTION FOCUSED ON MIDDLE-CLASS
Ralph Goodale MP
The relentless focus of the Liberal Party's national policy convention this past weekend was the well-being of Canada's middle-class and all those who are working so hard just to get there.
Liberal delegates grappled with the reality that middle income levels have been largely stagnant for far too long. While the Harper government denies there's any real problem -- witness their vacuous budget two weeks ago -- an internal federal report has just ... Read More
‘Indian Women Have Come a Long Way’
Better daycare facilities and flexible work hours can help retain women in the workforce even after they become mothers, says Ashu Suyash, chief executive of Mumbai-based L&T Investment Management Ltd., which manages 170 billion rupees in assets.
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Women at Work Face a Backlash
“I know of ... Read More
Penguin Breaks Silence Over Withdrawal of ‘The Hindus’
Penguin India Pvt. Ltd. has broken its silence and hit out at Indian laws days after receiving sharp criticism for agreeing to withdraw and pulp a book that re-envisaged the history of Hinduism.
The publishing house, after a four year legal battle with a nationalist group to defend the publication of Wendy Doniger’s “The Hindus: An Alternative History,” said it still believed in freedom of thought and expression, but had an obligation to “respect the laws ... Read More
Indian Pride Ramps Up the Prejudice
By Chandrahas Choudhury
Here are three strange but instructive instances of pride, pique and prejudice in modern India at different levels of state and society. To some Indians, they could represent the might and glory of the newly assertive motherland; to others of a perhaps more paranoid bent, they might indicate a creeping new culture of illiberalism and intolerance:
Scene 1: The American scholar and veteran radio broadcaster David Barsamian is a well-known Indophile. He has frequently ... Read More
How the Indian Man Leads the World in Preening
The average Indian woman spends more time on household chores than women anywhere else in the world. No surprise, then, that the average Indian man spends a huge chunk of his day eating, sleeping and preening. His contribution to household work is among the lowest world-over.
Those were some of the findings by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, which released a study Thursday on gender disparities in 29 countries. Indian women, the Paris-based ... Read More
A democracy that gets hurt by books, but not the body bags
By Avinash Pandey
At 218 in 2013 and 237 in 2012, one would expect a national outrage on the unusually high number of body bags returning to India from Qatar. One would think especially so, for the fact that these body bags belonged to Indian citizens. It must have incensed even the apologists of neoliberal regime for whom the idea of citizenship might be passé but still value the significant foreign remittances sent by those ... Read More
Your Ancestors, Your Fate
By GREGORY CLARK
Inequality of income and wealth has risen in America since the 1970s, yet a large-scale research study recently found that social mobility hadn’t changed much during that time. How can that be?
The study, by researchers at Harvard and Berkeley, tells only part of the story. It may be true that mobility hasn’t slowed — but, more to the point, mobility has always been slow.
When you look across centuries, and at social status broadly ... Read More
Carnival or Come Down?
Dr. James Kottoor
Bright & brittle rainbow colours of Palai centred casualty room calls for vertical & horizontal dialogue to decrease dissent & increase consensus to prevent a divided house going to pieces. Giant steps, not baby steps, of leadership a la Francis needed to unleash untold potentials for good in Kerala Church.
The week long 31st Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI) which met with a lot of fan fare is over. Palai, ... Read More
India Among the Worst for Press Freedom
By PREETIKA RANA
Reporters Without BordersThe world’s largest democracy remains one of the most restrictive places for the press.
In a report published Wednesday, Reporters Without Borders, a Paris-based nonprofit, ranked India 140th out of 180 countries surveyed for the free speech it affords the media. This was a one-point jump from the country’s 2013 ranking, when it recorded its steepest fall on the annual-list since 2002.
On Monday, acting on an agreement chalked out by a Delhi ... Read More
Why the AAP offers the best hope for governance and policy
Dr Rahul Pandey, Citizen News Service (CNS)
In a short period of time the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has shaken up India’s political landscape by offering an honest alternative to the mainstream national parties, specifically the Congress and the BJP. This article is an attempt to understand AAP’s credibility on certain crucial dimensions, namely, the integrity of senior leadership; their policy agenda for the underprivileged sections of society; and for the economy and business sector. ... Read More
AAP Means Aam Aadmi Pope! Become Aam Aadmi Pastors!
Dr. James Kottoor
Can Indian Bishops become aam aadmi shepherds imitating Pope Francis? Church Citizens plead for dialogue & inclusion, their due, in CBCI, through parallel meet, Knanites through prayer march call for expulsion of advocates of pure blood in Kottayam Diocese. Not Rite but be Right!
The new full form of AAP is: Aam Aadmi Pope. He in fact was the first to herald the dawn of an aam aadmi culture in Vatican and among the ... Read More
Rahul Gandhi Speaks Too Much ... and Not Enough
By Nisid Hajari
You know an interview is in trouble when in the first five minutes, the subject starts speaking in the third person. “To understand that question,” the scion of India’s Congress Party, Rahul Gandhi, hemmed when asked in his first TV sit-down last night if he feared a head-to-head confrontation with opposition leader Narendra Modi, “you have to understand a little bit about who Rahul Gandhi is.”
And, er, who might that be? “What ... Read More
Gandhi Aide Sees Toilets Helping Congress to Surprise Win
India’s ruling Congress party may promise voters legal rights to basic facilities like toilets, drinking water and housing in a bid to surprise pollsters and win a third term in elections due by May, a senior leader said.
Meeting needs of the “common man” will propel Congress to victory in a nation where more than half of 1.2 billion people don’t have a toilet in their homes, according to Digvijay Singh, a party executive helping ... Read More