ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Kalpana SharmaSubscribe to Kalpana Sharma

A Book of Memory and Forgetting

Splintered Justice: Living the Horror of Mass Communal Violence in Bhagalpur and Gujarat by Warisha Farasat and Prita Jha; New Delhi: Three Essays Collective, 2016, pp 221, ₹ 500 (paperback).

Evictions of Urban Poor

In the Public's Interest: Evictions, Citizenship and Inequality in Contemporary Delh i by Gautam Bhan, Hyderabad: Orient BlackSwan, 2016; pp 290, ₹ 825.

The Reluctant Minister

Green Signals: Ecology, Growth and Democracy in India by Jairam Ramesh, Oxford University Press, 2015; pp 604, Rs 850.

Surviving Land Grab

The Durable Slum: Dharavi and the Right to Stay Put in Globalizing Mumbai by Liza Weinstein (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press; published in India by Orient BlackSwan), pp 216, Rs 695.

Catch Me If You Can

A biopic attempts to capture the elusive metier and appeal of the documentary film-maker and activist, Anand Patwardhan.

Pakistanis, Indians and Thin Skins

Unlike their Pakistani counterparts, Indian writers seem to be cowed down by a general fear of irreverence and open criticism of society and the establishment.

Rejuvenating India's Small Towns

Visits to seven small towns in north India reveal how paucity of funds, slipshod planning and a dearth of capabilities have contributed to poor civic services and inadequate infrastructure. Citizens in some areas have organised themselves into neighbourhood committees to tackle problems that the urban bodies neglect, but this has its limitations and cannot substitute for efficient local government. The keys to tap the rich potential in these small towns are purposeful research, participative planning, responsive governance and healthy finances.

Citizens of an 'Undercity'

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo (New Delhi: Penguin Books), 2012; pp 254, Rs 499.

In Search of Common Ground

Uncommon Ground: Dialogues between Business and Social Leaders by Rohini Nilekani (New Delhi: Penguin Books), 2011; pp 250, Rs 499.

Wounded Mumbai

The 13 July bomb blasts in Mumbai have posed questions once again about the vulnerability of the city to terrorist attacks. But everyday life is itself terrifying for the majority in Mumbai. It is a terror to which you get inured; you do not even think of it as terror. One of the key issues in dealing with the vulnerability of Mumbai is of enhancing a sense of citizenship in all residents, and not just the privileged. It is the erosion of that sense of association with the city, exacerbated by divisive politics, that needs to be addressed - not to deal just with external terror attacks, but to tackle the terror of people's daily lives.

The Potential of 'Common Pool Resources'

The 13th Biennial Conference of the International Association for the Study of the Commons that was held in Hyderabad earlier this month discussed the idea of the "commons" in its manifestations, from the physical to the digital.

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