India’s Classrooms Without Borders

Every day at 3am, with the stars still stippling a dark, phosphorescent sky, Madhur Kapdi drives to his office in suburban Bangalore, India’s information-technology crucible, for work. After greeting his colleagues, Kapdi settles down in his cubicle with a mug of coffee, logs into his computer and begins — tutoring students online across a swath…

India’s Press Comes Under Fire

  Should the media repeatedly show the image of a young girl who was stripped naked, chased and humiliated by thugs in a city street during broad daylight? Should the picture of the girl, with some portions blurred, be printed in the front pages of daily newspapers days after the incident? Why didn’t the newspaper…

Indian Justice Delayed is Indian Justice Denied

In what must be a judicial record anywhere, courts across India on a single day, October 24, handed out life sentences to 60 people in four different cases – although there is no sign that any of them will go to jail anytime soon. Two of the cases relate to murder, one to planning the…

In India, a Tibetan Can Only Wait

 photo by Derrick Chang Palden, who like many Tibetans goes by a single name, was a teenage monk when he was arrested in 1992 along with 16 others for staging a small demonstration on the main street of Lhasa. It earned him six years imprisonment for committing a “counter-revolutionary act.” About 18 months ago Palden…

Industry Comes Calling for India’s Housewives

Reena Dewan, 46, was thrilled to receive an interview call from a multinational for a post as their sales manager. “I’d applied for the job months ago but soon forgot about it, thinking some cool dude must have bagged it,” said Dean, a qualified MBA who had put her career in the deep-freeze eight years…

India’s Burma Problem

  The carnage in Burma after the junta cracked down on widespread protests in September and October appears to be stirring unrest in India’s own remote northeastern states. Surrounded by Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet, Burma and Bangladesh, the region is only tenuously connected to India itself and has long been beset by numerous insurgencies. Bangladesh juts…

India’s Asian Ambitions Face Risks at Home

With the political fate of Australian Prime Minister John Howard hanging by a thread, and the departure early last month of Shinzo Abe from Japan's political stage, the "conservative spring” in the Asia-Pacific political region is coming to an end. George Bush, Howard and Abe, the three leading spirits of that abortive revolution, can now…

Wedding Wows!

Namrata Kaur of Mumbai married her childhood sweetheart Vijay Kalra in September in a burst of bling and blazing lights. About a thousand guests participated in her five-day wedding extravaganza featuring elephants, horses, chariots, 26 types of cuisine rustled up by renowned chefs and performances by award-winning artists. "I’d always dreamt of a fairy-tale wedding,”…

India’s IT Sector Needs to Reboot

  After spectacular tenfold expansion over the last decade, India’s vaunted information technology juggernaut is slowing, a victim of rising wages, an appreciating rupee, slowing exports to the US and rising taxes from a government not only trying to mop up revenues from every source but one giving in to popular perceptions that the IT…

Viewing India’s Down and Out

Photo by Wen-Yan King There was a time not long ago when India was synonymous in the popular imagination of the west as a place of numbing poverty, streams of beggars and teeming slums. Now that the image is shifting to silicon-fueled growth, Bollywood glamour and call-center empires, tourists – and the 300 million-odd members…