Lost Inheritance in the Mountains  

Lost Inheritance in the Mountains  

                                                                “In 1947, brothers and sisters, the British left granting India her freedom, granting the Muslims Pakistan, granting special provisions for the scheduled castes and tribes, leaving everything taken care of, brothers and sisters – Except us, EXCEPT US. The Nepalis of India. During that time, in April of 1947, the Communist party of…

Long Road Ahead!

Long Road Ahead!

Every time Triple Talaq is discussed, talked about or analyzed two questions invariably crop up. One, that data shows there is a higher percentage of divorce happening among Hindus than Muslims and the other being that the demand for doing away with instantaneous triple talaq does not address the short comings of the woman who…

Who was Sakshi Maharaj Defending?

Who was Sakshi Maharaj Defending?

  "One person has complained of rape against Ram Rahim. Crores others believed him as God. Who do you think is right?" Sakshi Maharaj said, alleging a "conspiracy to defame not only Ram Rahim and other saints, but also Indian culture." BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj made this statement in defence of Baba Ram Rahim, who was convicted in…

“The holes in knowledge are being replaced by attacks”: Githa Hariharan

“The holes in knowledge are being replaced by attacks”: Githa Hariharan

Renowned author, Githa Hariharan speaks at a public meeting held on August 22nd, emphasing on the problem of having holes in knowledge – the more you censor novels, seminars, discussions, movies, music, art, you create holes in knowledge. She discusses on the growing fear of questioning and debating against the authority among the student community. Witnessing the recent…

Right to Privacy is a Fundamental Right

Right to Privacy is a Fundamental Right

Talking about the recent judgement passed by a Nine judge bench of the Supreme Court of India, which upheld right to privacy as a fundamental right, Usha Ramanathan says, "Elevated privacy to a place where, which I think we woudn't have confidence to ask the courts to elevate it". Watch the entire conversation with Usha…

Marx in Ambedkar’s Thoughts

Marx in Ambedkar’s Thoughts

This is an excerpt from the valedictory address of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar at the study camp of All India Trade Union Workers held from 8-17 September 1943. The title of his speech was “Labour Parliamentary Democracy”. He further said, “But the labouring classes will not give them the attention they deserve. Instead, labour has taken…

Bharat Mata and Her Unruly Daughters

Bharat Mata and Her Unruly Daughters

    Bharat Mata’s daughter? But the Hindutvavaadi motherland produces only sons – Hindu, savarna sons – to protect their mother’s ever fragile honour. Let us begin these reflections with a moment from Nisha Pahuja’s disturbing film the World Before Her, which tracks two young women – Ruhi, a beauty pageant contestant, and Prachi, a trainer…

The Jogappas with T.M. Krishna

The Jogappas with T.M. Krishna

Any art form is not closed, but has spaces for experimentation and TM Krishna calls this experimentation as sharing. Here is one of those sharings between the Carnatic classical music and the music of Jogappas, a transgender community of Karnataka and Maharashtra.  Part One   Part Two   Also read:  T.M. Krishna and the Jogappas: Coming…

ईरानी औरतों की कहानियां 

ईरानी औरतों की कहानियां 

    मेरे बालिग़ होने में थोडा वक्त है ईरानी फ़िल्मकार मर्ज़ियेह मेश्किनी ने एक दूसरे बहुत मशहूर फ़िल्मकार मोहसेन मखलमबाफ़ की स्क्रिप्ट के सहारे तीन लघु कथा फ़िल्मों के जरिये ईरानी समाज में औरतों की दुनिया को बहुत संजीदगी से समझने की कोशिश की है। इस कथा श्रृंखला का नाम है द डे आई…

India Against Hate/ Nafrat Ke Khilaf

India Against Hate/ Nafrat Ke Khilaf

  INDIA AGAINST HATE / NAFRAT KE KHILAF ARTISTS DISSENT On Sunday, 27th August, 4.30 pm onwards, at 29 Ferozeshah Road (near Mandi House circle)  ​Join us in this nation wide  protest against  the violence unleashed by hate speech and hate crimes. The evening's programme will include: A visual signature campaign: register your dissent by getting yourself photographed against…

Voices from the Tea Plantations

Voices from the Tea Plantations

Guwahati, Aug. 23: The Joint Action Committee of Tea Tribes Adivasi Assam has demanded that the floods in the state be declared a national problem according to a report in The Telegraph.      If this demand is not met by February 2018, the organisation has also threatened to launch an agitation in tea gardens,…

Dalit Theatre and Ambedkar

Dalit Theatre and Ambedkar

Dr Ambedkar’s ideology has manifested itself in many forms. Dalit Theatre is one of them. Like Dalit Literature, Dalit Theatre also originated in the Marathi-speaking area. In other words, Marathi Dalit Theatre was the foundation of the Indian Dalit Theatre.   Today, Dalit Theatre has struck roots not only in Maharashtra but in the entire…

Indira Jaising: “It’s tragic that there were no women in the SC Bench that delivered the Triple Talaq Judgement”

Indira Jaising: “It’s tragic that there were no women in the SC Bench that delivered the Triple Talaq Judgement”

Shivangi Misra from the Lawyers Collective in conversation with the former Additional Solicitor General of India Indira Jaising on the Supreme Court judgement that anulled instant triple talaq. In the first part of the interview, they discuss the long tradition of cases that preceded the judgement, and then move on to discuss the judgement in detail.    Also see:…

The Image and the Individual: Hunger and Pain in the Making of the “Conscientious” Bengali Artist

The Image and the Individual: Hunger and Pain in the Making of the “Conscientious” Bengali Artist

Bergman, in his evocative essay titled “Film making”, gives a cinematic account of his childhood in his grandmother’s apartment in Uppsala, where he would sit under the large dining-room table, “listening” to the sunshine that filtered in through the gigantic windows. On the wall hung a large picture of Venice, and “as the sunlight moved…

Fragments of Desire in Delhi

Fragments of Desire in Delhi

1. Delhi sets like embers Falling into the cracks Of dismembered flesh Of everyday exhaustion And dying desires 2 Why do you come to me like the Delhi rain Breezy and scattered When I pant for a memory whole Of bruised bodies Coloured and caked Like the softness Of a noisy hometown Scurrying past the…

Blanket Ban on Manual Cleaning of Sewers

Blanket Ban on Manual Cleaning of Sewers

  In a long overdue decision, the Delhi social welfare minister Rajendra Pal Gautam on Monday, August 21,  announced a blanket ban on manual cleaning of sewers and warned that anyone found violating the rule will be booked under culpable homicide.He also said that a committee had been formed to find out the best possible…

On Literary Activism

On Literary Activism

In December 2014, Amit Chaudhuri, novelist, essayist, and Professor of Contemporary Literature at the University of East Anglia, decided to add to the activities of UEA in India by starting a series of symposiums and conversations that would inhabit and aim to create a space different from both the "academic conference" and the "literary festival"'….

What’s at Stake in the Triple Talaq Case?

What’s at Stake in the Triple Talaq Case?

Can “personal laws” that violate any provision of the Constitution, including the right to equality and non-discrimination based on sex, be declared unconstitutional? Or is there something inherent to them that makes them immune to the discipline of fundamental rights? This is the question that was raised in the challenge to Triple Talaq by the…

Dental Hygiene is Very Important

Dental Hygiene is Very Important

      Baba once told me about a man  who he was friends with in the 80s. He lost all his teeth, Baba said, in the Bhopal Gas Tragedy.  They just fell,  the minute gas entered his room  through a half open window. Just like that, all his teeth, anywhere between 28 and 32,…

In Defense of March for Science

In Defense of March for Science

  On 9th August, 2017, scientists took to the streets to march for science. They were demanding the Government to stop promoting unscientific and obscurantist ideas, stop throttling scientific research, and increase the funding allocated to education in general and science education in particular. In a note preceding these demands the protesting scientists also expressed anguish…

We Write Our Own Destinies : Madhu Valmiki

We Write Our Own Destinies : Madhu Valmiki

Madhu Valmiki, a young and ambitious 19 year old Dalit girl belongs to Valmiki community, one of the most socially excluded communities in UP. The community faces countless challenges even for accessing their basic resources. This girl is the support system for the entire family. She takes up part time household jobs and pursues her goals through education. From this perspective, Madhu’s…

“We are not liars”, Women to Supreme Court

“We are not liars”, Women to Supreme Court

“We oppose dilution of Section 498A”, “Violence is not a trivial issue” were slogans heard loud and clear at the Supreme Court of India on the morning of 31 July, 2017. A group of women’s organisations gathered to register their protest against the regressive judgment of Rajesh Sharma & Ors. v. State of UP and Anr. passed by Justice Adarsh…

One Bar, One Gown

One Bar, One Gown

    A tweet by senior advocate Ms. Indira Jaising took the shape of a “Gown Wapsi” movement on the eve of India’s 70th Independence Day. Three decades ago, Ms. Jaising had become the first woman to be designated senior advocate by the Bombay High Court. She has been a leader of the feminist movement…

Remembering Sova Sen, Legendary Actress of Political Theatre in Bengal

Remembering Sova Sen, Legendary Actress of Political Theatre in Bengal

Sova Sen, the legendary actress of Bengali theatre and cinema, passed away five days ago, on 13 August. Sen joined the political theatre of Bengal after she passed out from Bethune College. With these excerpts from Himani Banerji's essay, based on her interviews with Sen, we begin a series of tributes which critically evalute Sen's contribution to the political theatre…

Love-Letters Like No Other

Love-Letters Like No Other

  On January 3, 1831, 176 years ago Savitribai Phule, arguably India’s first woman teacher and forgotten liberator was born. With the first school for girls from different castes that she set up in Bhidewada, Pune (the seat of Brahmanism) Krantijyoti Savitribai as she is reverentially known, by the Indian Bahujan movement, blazed a revolutionary…

देश के आज के हालत पर एक व्यंग “होली है “

देश के आज के हालत पर एक व्यंग “होली है “

ये रैप सांग पिछले साल रिलीज़ हुआ और सोशल मीडिया पे काफी लोकप्रिय भी हुआ , "मोटरसाइकिल शायरीज़ " नामक बैंड के इस गाने  में उन्होंने देश के सामाजिक और राजनैतिक हालत पर तंज़ कसा  है।

On Dalit Autobiographies

On Dalit Autobiographies

The kind of experiences which are narrated in Dalit autobiographies have had no models before. One of the first points that strikes the readers of Akkarmashi by Sharankumar Limbale is the dehumanising impact of caste oppression in Hindu society. His autobiography documents his struggles against poverty, deprivation, discrimination and caste violence. His family rarely enjoys…

All India Radio is Not for All

All India Radio is Not for All

    All India Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan (DD) refused to air the pre-recorded, Independence day speech of Manik Sarkar, the democratically elected Chief Minister of the state of Tripura. Prasara Bharati, an autonomous body that runs both AIR and DD informed the same to the Chief Minister's office. In the email written to the Chief…

Harassment of Writer Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar Must Cease

Harassment of Writer Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar  Must Cease

  Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar must be free to practice his craft of writing without fear of intimidation and harassment, PEN International said today. Shekhar’s critically acclaimed literary and journalistic writing focuses on the Santhal community, which lives primarily in eastern India and parts of Bangladesh. His books include The Mysterious Ailment of Rupi Baskey (Aleph 2014) and The…

The Vultures Feasting on the Misery of the Poor

The Vultures Feasting on the Misery of the Poor

How did Modi put up so many holograms all over the country? How did he and his supporters flew in chartered aircrafts? Who funded these politicians? In Indian reality such fundamental questions are always hidden from common citizens. And the main stream media refuses to cover the ground reality of Indian politics. Investigative journalist Josy Joseph in his…

For Eunice and Vijay

For Eunice and Vijay

    I. All this whining after the passing is like cigarette smoke. Coiling up. Eunice would puff away at it, askance; her questions tightly grabbing at shirt corners, a little determined to be sly. The neighbors are frying jalebi to eat with curdled cream. Bloody brown sahibs. Don't you know, we're good at pretense…

Not In My Name- Say No To Hatred

Not In My Name- Say No To Hatred

  The silence has been broken. A protest initiated in June 2017 by the #NotInMyName campaign spread to 26 cities and towns across India. Thousands of Indians stood up to say NO to hatred and violence in the name of religion and caste. That was a moment of pause. Even the Prime Minister spoke up, briefly, but there has…

Stop Killing the Marginalised

Stop Killing the Marginalised

 Image Courtesy: Thelogicalindian The series of deaths in sewer lines and septic tanks over the last one month, 27 in the country including 9 in Delhi is tragic, disgraceful and devastating; not only for the families of the deceased but for all of us celebrating the 70th year of Indian independence. Those who died belong to…

Tribal goddess Chamunda and Mahishasur

Tribal goddess Chamunda and Mahishasur

Chamundeshwari is considered the family deity of the Wodeyar dynasty that ruled what was then the tiny state of Mysore between 1399 and 1947. The idol of the goddess is seated on the golden howdah during the ceremonial procession that forms part of the famous Mysore Dasara pageant – because the Maharaja became only one in…

दलित छवियों से क्यों डरते हैं वे?

दलित छवियों से क्यों डरते हैं वे?

    भारतीय सिनेमा में, चाहे वो कथा फिल्में हों या गैर कथा फ़िल्में, दलित समाज की अभिव्यक्तियाँ बहुत मामूली रही हैं। यह बात उसी तरह सच है जैसे हमारी सिनेमाई दुनिया मेंमहिलाओं और अल्पसंख्यकों की कहानियाँ भी बहुत कम हैं। भारी-भरकम संख्या वाले हिंदी सिनेमा में एम सथ्यू निर्देशित सिर्फ़ एक फ़िल्म गर्म हवा…

Governance Without Data Is Bound To Fail

Governance Without Data Is Bound To Fail

A farmer in Tarihal village, Karnataka, where all four wells had dried up during a prolonged drought. The present government was quick in circulating the notice that 25th December every year shall be observed as good governance, however, what seems to have been over looked by not just the present government, but all previous ones…

Fearless Godavari Parulekar Led the Warli Tribes in the Freedom Movement

Fearless Godavari Parulekar Led the Warli Tribes in the Freedom Movement

  When we hear the phrase “freedom fighter”, we often imagine a male freedom fighter. But nearly half of the freedom fighters involved in the struggle for Independence were women who participated in equal numbers, and strove fearlessly to attain freedom from the British colonisers.  The All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) has compiled a list…

Destruction of the University

Destruction of the University

    The Vice Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University recently remarked that he desires to install a tank in the University campus to instill love for the country. This has made one thing absolutely clear – the VC has no interest in the University, and therefore, he has no moral right to remain in the…

March For Science

March For Science

                                                                                                          Image Courtesy:https://allevents.in/events/india-march-for-science-pune-chapter/1539584542778636#…

मैनुअल स्केवेंजिंग से हुई मौत – कहाँ है इंसाफ?

मैनुअल स्केवेंजिंग से हुई मौत – कहाँ है इंसाफ?

    ऐ, रहबरो मुल्कों कौम बता, ये किसका लहू है कौन मरा– इंकलाबी तेवर वाले मकबूल शायर साहिर लुधियांवी की ये नज्म अनगिनत वाकयों पर जनता के ऊपर होने वाले जुल्म, कत्लेआम की बानगी के तौर पर पेश की जाती रही। यहां पर जिन लोगों की हत्याओं की बात कर रहे हैं, उनका भी…

Adivasi Scholars Stand Up for Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar

Adivasi Scholars Stand Up for Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar

  Award-winning Santal author Hansda Sowvendra Shekhar, who has written the acclaimed novel The Mysterious Ailment of Rupi Baskey (2014) and a collection of stories, The Adivasi Will Not Dance (2015), both works of fiction that explore the Adivasi life, suddenly finds himself thick in the middle of a vicious controversy. A group of Adivasis in Jharkhand, where he works…

Dakshinayan Abhiyan Appeals for March for Science

Dakshinayan Abhiyan Appeals for March  for Science

Dakshinayan Abhiyan has appealed all the citizens including scientists, writers, professors, teachers and students to attend the meeting scheduled to be held on Monday, 7th August 2017 at Conference Hall of Goa Union of Journalists, , Shrama Shakti Bhavan, Patto – Panaji at 5:30 pm. to press for demands to allocate at least 3% of GDP to scientific and technological…

“I resemble everyone/ but myself”: Revisiting A K Ramanujan and the Controversy Over “Three Hundred Ramanayas”

“I resemble everyone/ but myself”: Revisiting A K Ramanujan and the Controversy Over “Three Hundred Ramanayas”

Poet, folklorist, essayist, and translator, A K Ramanujan, died on 13 July, twenty four years ago. A multilingual writer, Ramanujan worked tirelessly in translation after translation to draw our attention to folktales, oral stories, and literatures from classical Tamil, a language that is older than Sanskrit. In 2008, the Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), took offence…

No place for OBCs and STs in Higher Education

No place for OBCs and STs in Higher Education

The Centre for Studies in Social Sciences (CSSSC), a premier state-funded research institute based in Kolkata, has had a poor record when it comes to implementing reservations in faculty appointments and admitting students. On other matters related to social justice too, the institute that boasts illustrious faculty members such as historian Partha Chatterjee – currently an…

Apples of Kashmir

Apples of Kashmir

Calm down, Kashmir, sit for a while by the Dal tucked aside like a cold meal by a captive; look at us, we the forbidden fruits, scored with ash, grime and gore, sweet anyways, if not alluring; come, pluck us, sin! The half-burnt chipmunk caking beneath the chinar, we know, is your wrath; the skeleton peering…

Two Poems

Two Poems

A Journey, Backward Writing on the bark of a tree, sometimes, seems to be tricky Than writing a propos to a tree. We stretched one of our legs each And, with other two creased, Tried to form a cave; A cave where light embezzles its siesta After a tedious journey from Love-me to love-me-not. It…