News of Her Own

Deep inside the cramped streets of the bustling Kamathipura district in Mumbai, India’s financial capital, an editorial meeting is in progress at the tiny office of a new magazine. The clatter of keyboards is audible as contents for the upcoming issue are finalized, page layouts planned and the past issue dissected. This could be any…

Indian Men Put on a Pretty Face

Tall, dark and handsome? Make that tall, fair and handsome in India. While savvy brand managers have always cashed in on Indian women’s obsession for lighter skin by peddling a raft of `fairness’ products, they have now zeroed in on a new cache of clients – Indian men. Didier Villanueva, country manager for L’Oreal India,…

A Business School for the Indian Poor

In an age when business schools have become synonymous with stratospheric tuition fees and blue-chip faculties, the Mann Deshi Udyogini, or Udyogini Business School, which opened in January 2007 in a drought-prone village in Maharashtra State, is India’s, and perhaps the world’s, first and only B-school for unlettered rural women. A kind of parallel universe…

Hidden Darkness: Child Sexual Abuse in India

After a brilliant 16-year-old New Delhi girl repeatedly complained last month that her mathematics teacher was “touching and fondling her private parts,” the upshot was a long way from what anybody bargained for. When the girl’s parents complained, the principal called them “regressive” and blamed them for damaging the school’s reputation. The girl now stays…

Pakistan is the Spanner in South Asia’s Works

Although the 14th summit of the eight-member South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation summit in New Delhi last week raised hopes hope that finally the politics and economics of the region would be transformed, it is going to take a long time. The primary reason is Pakistan’s increasing instability after the sacking of Supreme Court…

The developing world’s curse from deep wells

Sing Ingti, 39, a watchman at a local high school in Asom (formerly Assam) state in Northeast India, has been suffering from serious, ill-defined bodily pain since 1995.  His teeth are mottled, his leg bones are distorted and his legs are losing strength from what seems a mysterious ailment. But actually this is an all-too-common…

Indian Hubris Creates a Mountain of Debt

It may have been a coincidence that the Shanghai stock market tumbled 5 percent on the day that India's Tata group won a $12-billion battle for the Anglo-Dutch steel company Corus. But maybe not. Easy money and reckless purchases are a global phenomenon fuelled by a surfeit of cheap money. Chances are the neophyte investors…

India Strengthens Military Ties with Burma

Indian security forces, frustrated by cross-border raids by armed rebels in the remote northeast, are looking for increased military ties with Burma and possible joint operations to flush out separatist guerrillas. A steady parade of senior officials and high-ranking military officers has trooped to Rangoon in recent months to offer military equipment, training and cooperation…

India Fever Overheats

There are several accidents waiting to happen in global financial markets. But the one that beats them all – even beats mainland Chinese bank fever – is India. Conditions are rapidly building for an accident that will not just devastate stock prices but strike a body blow at India’s expectations of sustaining a faster growth…

Slow Surfing in India

India, generally regarded as the outsourcing bull’s-eye of the planet, is far behind China in broadband connections, according to a new report by the New York-based eMarketer Internet research agency, which sees China adding broadband users at a pace that India will take years to match, perhaps if it ever does. Although India’s Telecom Regulatory…