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May 18, 2015
via India Insight

Book Talk: Mizoram’s pain yet to heal 29 years after peace accord


Author Malsawmi Jacob was in high school when the independence movement in the future state of Mizoram began in 1966. Her father, an army subedar stationed in the hill town of Shillong, now in the state of Meghalaya, predicted at the time that ordinary people would bear the brunt of an armed conflict. He was right.

The two-decade-long revolt by the Mizo National Front (MNF) would lead the Indian government to use war planes against its own citizens for the first time. A “grouping” policy was introduced where villages were burned and civilians herded to guarded centres so that people would be unable to shelter insurgents.

Apr 30, 2015
via India Insight

Primary care centres key to reforming healthcare in India: health economist Kenneth Thorpe


Over 60 percent of deaths in India are due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and cardiovascular disease, which are also responsible for about 70 percent of spending on healthcare. They also affect the economic health of the country, with NCDs and mental illness expected to cost India $4.58 trillion between 2012 and 2030.

Health economist Dr. Kenneth E. Thorpe, chairman of Partnership to Fight Chronic Disease, an international NGO, is advising the government of India on developing a policy to deal with the country’s rising chronic disease problem.

Apr 29, 2015
via India Insight

How Delhi’s shoeshine boys learn to read and write


It’s 8:30 am and office workers are streaming out of the Delhi Metro’s Gate No. 5 on Barakhamba Road, the capital’s central business district. Nearby, five shoeshine boys holding pencils and notebooks crowd around Firdos Khan, who sits with them on the ground in her white salwar and is busy explaining the difference between 7 plus 2 and 7 multiplied by 2.

Khan, 23, teaches math and other basic education to street children in the surrounding markets. Her goal is to meet the educational needs of these children who are too busy working to go to school, or to children whose parents are too poor to send them to school. She doesn’t work for any organization – government or NGO.

Jan 28, 2015

India’s lone male tenor aims to sing opera in local key

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – When Anando Mukerjee tells people in India that he’s an opera singer, they are intrigued – and impressed. Opera is almost unheard of in a country obsessed with Bollywood spectacle.

Mukerjee wants to change that. As India’s only male tenor performing on the global stage, the 30-something singer has made it his mission to demystify the art form through live shows, social media and by adapting opera to an Indian context.

Jan 27, 2015
via India Insight

India’s lone male tenor wants to ‘Indianise’ opera


Opera singer Anando Mukerjee discovered his love for music while listening to crooner Al Martino’s Here In My Heart on state-run All India Radio when he was 13. Now, he is India’s only male tenor performing on the international stage.

Born in Bihar to Bengali parents and now living in London, Mukerjee studied at Cambridge University but quit academics for opera after getting a degree in molecular biology. At 23, he started getting singing lessons from vocal coaches including Nicolai Gedda, and went professional in 2006. He debuted at Belgrade’s National Theatre, and has performed in Italy, France, England, Scotland, Wales, Norway and the United States.

Aug 22, 2014
via India Insight

First pictures of Taj Mahal to ‘Hairy family of Burma': subcontinent photos from 1850-1910


A new exhibition in India’s capital showcases some of the earliest photographs from South Asia, taken between 1850 and 1910 when the region was under British rule.

Around 250 images from India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Nepal are on display at the “Drawn from Light: Early Photography and the Indian Sub-continent” exhibition in New Delhi.

Aug 13, 2014
via India Insight

Coupon websites make merry as deal-hunting Indians go online


Four years ago, Kaveri Nandan bought a discount coupon for a session at a hair salon in New Delhi from Snapdeal, which at the time was a website for daily online deals and a pioneer in the segment in India. When Nandan called up the salon to book an appointment, she found that the place had closed.

“The segment (digital coupons) was just starting out, so I guess they had not sorted out many things. They were idiots for not doing their homework. I complained and got my refund,” said 35-year-old Nandan, who works at a business magazine.

Jul 22, 2014

Restaurant run by Indian convicts wins praise for politeness, hygiene

NEW DELHI, July 22 (Reuters) – As India’s capital baked in a
heat wave, banker Gaurav Gupta sat down for lunch at a new
air-conditioned restaurant, to be greeted by a smiling waiter
who took his order for a traditional “thali” meal of flatbread,
lentils, vegetables and rice.

Nothing unusual, except that the employee, like most of his
colleagues, is a convicted murderer serving time in South Asia’s
largest prison complex.

Jul 17, 2014
via India Insight

Indian eatery run by murder convicts praised for politeness, hygiene


As India’s capital baked under a heat wave this month, banker Gaurav Gupta sat down for lunch at a new air-conditioned restaurant, and was greeted by a smiling waiter who offered him chilled water and took his order — a traditional “thali” meal of flatbread, lentils, vegetables, rice and pickle.

Nothing unusual, except that the employee, like most of his co-workers, is a convicted murderer serving time in South Asia’s largest prison complex.

Jul 16, 2014
via India Insight

Four of every 10 Asians living with HIV are Indian – U.N. report


India has the third-highest number of people living with HIV in the world, with 2.1 million Indians accounting for four of every 10 people infected in Asia, the United Nations said in a report on Wednesday.

The epidemic has killed about 39 million of the 78 million people it has affected worldwide since it began in the 1980s, the U.N. AIDS programme said, adding that the number of people infected with HIV was stabilising around 35 million.

    • About David

      "David Lalmalsawma is the deputy editor of the Reuters India website and the Delhi online desk. He previously worked on the online desk of the Economic Times and on the foreign desk at the Press Trust of India. He tweets @davidlms25"
      Joined Reuters:
      April 2008
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