Patralekha Chatterjee

Patralekha Chatterjee

Patralekha Chatterjee

Patralekha Chatterjee

Babies, dead and anonymous

West Bengal has a new government, a new chief minister, and a new name — Paschimbanga, but the situation on the ground remains obdurately familiar. The state is again in the news for all the wrong reasons.

Europe’s de-growth: A view from Italy

For those with time, money and the urge to splurge, there is Aldo Coppola, the hair stylist to the beau monde. Coppola opened his first salon in Milan in 1965.

Superbug not invincible

Last week, “Superbug” swaggered onto the front pages of newspapers and primetime television with the dash of Superman. The circumstances that marked the occasion were packed with all the drama that it takes to be a headline-grabber.
Delhi was hosting the First Global Forum on Bacterial Infections. One of the British scientists whose study on New Delhi Metallo-Beta Lactamase 1 or NDM-1, the superbug, had caused a global stir last year was in town to present a paper.

The tragic toll tale

India’s creaky infrastructure is in desperate need of upgradation; Public-private partnerships are the answer; Big-ticket initiatives are in the pipeline. Without better infrastructure, India is unlikely to ever make it to the A-list of the global economy. All this is well-known, and oft-repeated. But recent events show that the infrastructure policy have to take on board new risks and challenges. A key concern is the safety and security of the foot soldiers of the infrastructure industry. They are often among the most vulnerable.

There’s safety in the nitty-gritty

Eight years ago, while researching a report on awareness about HIV and AIDS in India, I spent an afternoon at the Inland Container Depot at Tughlakabad, on the outskirts of Delhi.

Victory march fine. Now battle begins

They were playing “Lose Control”, that peppy, foot-tapping track from the mega hit Rang de Basanti when we arrived at India Gate early Sunday evening.

‘I’ for inequality

Last week, as television brought the riots in Britain into the living room, images from a visit to another town more than 20 years ago came hurtling back. It was early 1990 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Apart from its notorious religious divide, what I remember most graphically about that city was a forest of dish antennae in a housing estate in a very poor neighbourhood. Satellite television had not yet arrived in India, and colour TV was still a status symbol.

Labels that shut up debate

Unfair. Pakistan foreign minister Hina Rabbani Khar’s pricey black Birkin bag got more play than all her other assets — even the Roberto Cavalli shades — during her recent visit to India. Blame it on the makers of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. Had Ms Khar not timed her visit to this country so close to the release of this delightful Bollywood film, the texting, tweeting, Facebook-loving populace may not have mistaken her as the original “Bagwati”.

From stretcher to where?

We are all Mumbaikars now. Television sledge-hammered the horrors home — the glass shards, the blood, the gore. Wherever we were, we felt the pain of Mumbai as terror called on the city again.

The ideology bogey

Call someone ideological, and you have effectively done him/her in. In today’s popular perception, an ideological person does not have an argument. He or she only carries baggage — mostly old, mostly junk — and therefore can be ignored. The latest to get the rap for being ideological is Mani Shankar Aiyar, the former sports minister.

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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.