That a deep pocketed media house like the India Today Group folded its tent without resistance in the face of Abhishek Manu Singhvi’s legal threats, while an obscure activist with a checkered free speech history dared to resist, is a permanent blot on a storied media house, for which it owes its readers and the public an apology and an explanation.
The extraordinary arrogance of Indian elites in dissing foreign aid for its poorest citizens and their chest thumping over India’s meteoric economic rise glosses over some glaringly painful realities.
The Indian public is under threat from satirical images of Sonia Gandhi? Really?
I could feel them taking inventory of my outfit, my hair, and my non-designer shoes, and inevitably, as soon as whomever I was talking to chalked me up as being a “fresh-off-the-boat,” they simply turned to someone more important.
Local elites in many developing societies shared the Western sensibilities and often took draconian measures to limit population growth.
We may be headed for a fairly long economic downturn, Far from improving, Western economies could slide into a double dip recession. We could be sitting on a powder keg, which will explode.
The richest people and companies — such as Fortune magazine’s list of the world’s largest companies or the world’s richest — are atleast based on measurable criteria of wealth, and even they hit and miss, because not all assets are in accessible public databases.
A steady stream of recent news and scholarly articles has been predicting the decline and fall of the American Empire.
Casting a glance back at how India appeared to the outside world just a few months ago is rather like looking at grainy footage of yesteryear: a booming economy, IT whiz-kids making waves all over the globe, top ranking in international Test cricket, the ICC Cricket World Cup in the bag, Bollywood on the roll.
Wah India. Your myriad avatars, your million mutinies never cease to amaze. We try hard to hijack you. Some cry, "India is Indira". Others sing, "You are my Sonia". Still others chant, "Saffron Shining."
For India to join the developed world it needs much more than eight-lane highways and spanking new airport terminals. It needs to drag its politics into the 21st century, along with the rest of the country.
"Give me a name, America, make of me a Buzz or Chip or Spike. Bathe me in amnesia and clothe me in your powerful unknowing."
The Never Return is a unique breed of people. Their uniqueness lies in the fact that they think they are the most fortunate people in this world. For them India is a third world country which is confined to those once-in-a-few-years visits for the sake of completing the formality of seeing their loved ones
It is time for some soul-searching within the community, before more Indians discover themselves attracting the relentless public humiliation that Kaur’s boorish and arrogant conduct has subjected her to.
I knew one other thing: I too had graduated and you were congratulating me.
You might as well not be, if you don’t belong.
The slew of recent financial scandals in which so many Indians have been ensnared is the natural corollary of the community’s fixation with wealth.
Clearly the self-appointed guardians of Gandhi’s legacy neither have read Lelyveld’s book nor have any understanding of the man they so venerate.