Table of Contents
Covershut up Cuckoo!
Exiled to cyberia
By: Kunda Dixit
Like the fashion business, the Third World development debate seems to go through fads and styles. Mantras come, and mantras go. The latest buzzword is knowledge. The world is now a Knowledge Society, we are told, and the global gap between know and know-not is growing, therefore the only way to give the poor the chance to catch up is to pump in more knowledge with computers and through the Internet.
The mother of all media
By: Altamash Kamal
It was during an uncharacteristically sultry summer afternoon attending a session Of a Salzburg seminar our years ago that I got my first taste of the Internet. There at the foot of the Alps, I got on 'the Net' and (having skipped dinner) stayed on till three in the morning. Then I called and woke my wife up in Karachi and told her: "I think I have discovered what I was born for."
2001 A Cyber Odyssey
By: Arthur Clarke
Arthur Clarke’s optimistic guide to surving the information Age. The advent of the computer has given us an invaluable, though often exasperating, assistant in tasks that once seemed could be performed only by human beings. It is hard to believe that only 50 years ago, the then chairman of IBM famously declared that the world market for computers was about six.
Today we will take questions from all of you out there who have been waiting to ask me everything you've always wanted to know about computers, but were afraid of making asses of yourselves.
Literary south asiaDinas home
FeatureGuilty, until proven guilty
The Netaji Files
By: Sujoy Dhar
Fifty-four years after his mysterious disappearance in an air crash in Taiwan in 1945, controversy continues over the 'death' of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. Generation after generation of Bengalis have dismissed Bose's death in the said air crash citing lack of corroborative evidence.
By: Deepali Nandwani
To catch even the tail end of the informationRevolution South Asia needs a telecome backbone says Deepali Nandwani. Deep inside Savai Madhopur, a dusty Uttar Pradesh village, is located a small, almost incongruous tin shed. You would miss it if it weren't for the dozen or so people patiently waiting for their turn to use the telephone, the only one within a 35-km radius.
By: Praful Bidwai
SOUTH ASIA The indian government led by the hard-line Bharatiya Janata Party has put a spoke in the wheel of SAARC (South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation), by forcing a postponement of the summit, scheduled for 26-28 November in Kathmandu.
By: Vijay Prashad
INDIA • PAKISTAN By ballot and bullet, the Indian and Pakistani states have committed themselves to the forces of the Right by late 1999. In India, an election returns a vast alliance dominated by the Hindu Right, while in Pakistan, the generals resort to a coup d'etat against a corrupt, but democratically elected regime.
PAKISTAN The commonwealth team that visited Pakistan at the end of October to make an on-the-spot assessment of the official, political and public opinion in the country, will have found that the military takeover of 12 October was greeted largely with relief. Sent by the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) in order to take a decision on whether to suspend Pakistan's Commonwealth membership, the team was unable to obtain any time-frame for the restoration of an elected civilian government.
SAF in the time of cricket
If you didn't know, the eighth edition of the South Asian Federation (SAF) Games was held in Kathmandu in October-November; and as expected, there were no earth-shattering performances. All that seemed of relevance was that Nepal's capital got spruced-up, with flyovers springing up, traffic islands suddenly greening, and a brand new sports complex got built with the Chinese government's help.
Obituaryâ€˜The Muslim Buddhustâ€™
By: Tarik Al Khan
Akhtar Hameed Khan (1914-1999) The death of Akhtar Hameed Khan came as an ominous portent on the eve of Pakistan's military takeover. While the rest of the country waited anxiously to see how Pakistan would deal with its latest democratic failure, the rural development guru was quietly laid to rest in the arid soil of Orangi, the periurban Karachi settlement where he had tirelessly worked for nearly two decades to instill the spirit of self-help.
Dangerous support The first speeches of almost all of Pakistan's elected, dictatorial or caretaker leaders, have differed little in intent from that of General Musharraf's this week. They all talk about critical junctures, accountability of the past, moral authority and direction, and the like. After about a couple of years, the expectations with every new government go sour and the government begins to lose its popularity amongst the public. This happened with Nawaz Sharif's government as well which had a mandate which is never likely to be repeated gain.
ReportThe Jury Experience
By: Salman Shahid
Is there a particular measure with which a film jury determines the quality of films that they view? Most probably, in certain film festivals, there is. Festivals that have been happening for some time now and have matured, probably, have a code for viewing and determining the merit of the wares that they scrutinise.
AnalysisReturn of the khaki
By: Zia Mian and A.H.Nayyar
Pakistan's military coup truncated a democratic process that would have thrown out Nawaz Sharif as decisively as Benazir Bhutto was rejected in the last election.
OpinionThe emperors newfatigues
MediafileTidbits of the region's media
By: Chhetria Patrakar
The archive: 25 years of Southasia
Image: Penguin India
Penguin India withdraws The Hindus
On 11 February 2014, Penguin India decided to recall and destroy all remaining copies of Wendy Doniger’s book The Hindus: An Alternative History. The decision was part of an agreement between them and Shiksha Bachao Andolan, a Hindu campaign group that filed a case against the publishers in 2010, arguing that the book was insulting to Hindus and contained “heresies”.
From our archive:
Diwas Kc reviews The Hindus: An Alternative History. (March 2010)