Rohini Nair

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A tale of ordinariness


For an author promoting his latest book, Amit Chaudhuri sets an unhurried pace. A day after Calcutta: Two Years In The City, was launched in Mumbai, the acclaimed writer’s agenda for the morning was to look around the bookstores in a city that was once home. I see Mr Chaudhuri — a tall, casually dressed man with a fringe of salt and pepper hair that nearly brushes the top of his spectacles — at the Kitab Khana store, and he agrees amiably to cut short his tour and settle down in the in-house cafe for a chat.

The new superstars


They’re young, at the top of their game and extremely photogenic. Yet, you won’t find their faces plastered over every hoarding and bus-stop or speaking to you from your television screen. Perhaps that’s because they’ve chosen to excel in sports other than the Great Indian Obsession, cricket. But they’ve got a dedicated set of fans, and their charisma makes them a shoo-in for the glamour club. Sports’ new superstars simply need a suitable marquee.

Indi-genius crafts

Colourful paper towl holders

l Bengaluru-based Karthik Vaidyanathan is the founder of Varnam. He previously worked in the corporate sector for 15 years.

Norah woos Mumbai on a summer’s night

The newspapers would report the next day that Sunday, the 3rd, was among the hottest days in March in a decade.

A faith unshaken but unsettled


Ma Anand Sheela was Bhagwan Rajneesh’s personal secretary from 1981 to 1985, and a member of his inner circle for several years preceding that.

Run Leela Run!


Amit Sheth, a Mumbai-based businessman and self-confessed couch potato, was 38 when he decided to run a marathon. He’d just watched his brother-in-law compete in the first ever Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon, in 2004. With mere months left for next year’s event, Amit began training in earnest.

Cracking the cancer puzzle


At first glance, there’s nothing much that might differentiate Shree Bose from any other home-from-the US-on-a vacation teen.

Tower raises interesting questions about Parsi practise of disposing the dead

pp. 412, `399

Just after 7 pm on a weekday, in weather that counts as the Mumbai winter, I make my way through the quiet bylanes of Dadar Parsi Colony.

What is the $300 house?


As the name suggests, the $300 house is simply a house that costs $300 or less to build. It was proposed as a solution to the housing crisis for the poor that has beset many developing countries, by two Indians, Christian Sarkar and Vijay Govindrajan in an issue of the Harvard Business Review.

What is the Buskaid project?

Rosemary with students

“A challenge always turns into a miracle”, this is the thought that helped Rosemary Nalden set up Buskaid, an initiative that helps children from economically backward families in Soweto, South Africa, to gain a high quality education in playing stringed instruments.

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I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.