Asia Sentinel Writer Wins Fellowship

Asia Sentinel correspondent Nava Thakuria, 40, is the recipient of a fellowship from the United Nations High Commission and the Centre for North East Studies and Policy Research for his reporting on refugee issues.

A journalist in Northeastern India for the past 17 years, Thakuria’s areas of interest are the health, economic and socio-political aspects of women, among others. In addition to refugee issues in Northeastern India and Burma, Thakuria has also written extensively for Asia Sentinel on Chinese and Indian competition for Burmese energy, Bhutan’s efforts to turn itself into a democracy, insurgencies in the restive northeastern Indian region and ethnic tensions. He holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Assam Engineering College.

The theme of the fellowship is "The Chins of Myanmar: Refugee Life in a Distant Neighbor," with a focus on the protection of the Chin ethnic group, which ranges from western Burma across the Northeast of India. The fellowship will run from March 1 to May 31. Thakuria is expected to travel to the region and write a minimum of three in-depth articles on the topic.

The announcement was made by a committee comprised of Sanjoy Hazarika, the managing trustee of the Centre for North East Studies, journalist and editor, Pamela Philipose, Independent Journalist, and Nayana Bose of the UNHCR.