Previous Issues

What Bollywood Thinks of You

Cover Story

… and why that should make you gnash your teeth

Stories in this issue

Got Change?

As a student entering the eighth grade, I was appalled to discover on the classroom door a sign with ‘VIII B’ on it. Not that I had anything in particular against being in section B. Rather, I…

Guns ‘n’ Woes

India has a relatively low count of privately-owned firearms—we’re ranked 110th among 179 countries. Yet, the ‘country-made rifle’ is a common spectre in news reports of robberies and murders. A…

Meter Down in Mumbai

Those who commute to work in Mumbai look at autorickshaw and taxi drivers with almost as much hate as Raj Thackeray, but for different reasons. Rickshaws, at a half-utopian point in the past,…

India as a Scatological Superpower

NEW DELHI ~ Who can forget Naipaul’s famous refrain on India’s ‘national pastime’? ‘They defecate, mostly, beside the railway tracks. But they also defecate on the beaches; they defecate on the…

The Indian Employment Puzzle

Let’s begin with the bad news. According to the latest data on employment released by the National Sample Survey Organisation, while 60 million new jobs were created in India between 1999-2000…

Orwell’s 1984: Starring the Sori Family

NEW DELHI ~ Early on 3 October, a truckload of police personnel landed at the house of Jaipur-based civil rights activist Kavita Srivastava. The personnel were from four local police stations,…

The Bal Thackeray Whimper

MUMBAI ~ Every Dussehra, the Shiv Sena organises one of its biggest political events: the Dussehra rally, or melava, at Shivaji Park in Dadar, Mumbai. On this grand annual occasion, party chief…

When Everything Is Okay

I am so out of the loop these days. It was only the sudden rush on sabudaana at Las Viegas supermarket that alerted me that Durga is coming to town. Here in Goa, where the festival of Ganesh the…

Manmohan’s Foreign Policy Twist

WASHINGTON DC ~ Hedging your bets is an old Indian tradition, chiselled and honed to perfection over centuries. Keep all doors open, dole out criticism and largesse in equal measure, and hope…

Don’t Count Him Out Ever

In the autumn of his career, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, the Congress’ bhadralok politician who is widely seen as the party’s most active link with the pre-Rajiv Gandhi era, is still…