SALARPUR, India Oct 25 (Reuters) – India will hold its first
Grand Prix this weekend – a glitzy coming-out party for an
emerging economic juggernaut that is lost on villagers like
Meera, standing by a fetid pond near the brand new Formula One
race track with a child covered in warts.
“What is this Formula One? I learnt only recently that some
of our land was acquired for it,” said Meera, a mother of four
who goes by one name. The floodlights of the $400 million F1
circuit that can hold 100,000 roaring spectators could be seen
in the distance.
THIMPHU (Reuters) – For a sign of things to come with isolated Bhutan’s young democracy, look no further than a draconian smoking law, some bar talk, and a Facebook page.
For decades, Bhutan has been the world’s most reclusive kingdom, with conservative villagers living under an absolute monarch. The introduction of parliamentary democracy in 2008 by the then-king was forced on many reluctant subjects who still look to the monarch as the final arbiter of justice.
PUNAKHA, Bhutan (Reuters) – Bhutan’s “Dragon King” married a commoner in a Himalayan monastic fortress on Thursday, sipping a chalice of ambrosia symbolizing eternal life, in a wedding that has transfixed a reclusive kingdom slowly embracing globalization.
King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck wore a crown adorned with a raven’s head during the sumptuous ceremony in this 17th-century fortress, as 21-year-old student Jetsun Pema, daughter of an airline pilot, received a crown embroidered with silk.