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Socialism after Gore and the old guard

There is no dearth of citizens’ movements for rights today. But do they have the ideological frame, the vision of society, economy and politics that Mrinal Gore and her generation of socialist leaders had, which could weave disparate struggles into a larger transformative force, asks Rajni Bakshi

Mrinal Gore socialist and women’s rights leader

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Queer beauty

By Abhijit Kondhalkar

Pahal, a beauty parlour for gay and trans people run by young transgender Simmy since 2009, is also a drop-in centre providing counselling, comfort and warmth to a community in desperate need of acceptance

Pahal Foundation Gay community

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In Vinoba's footsteps: Tribute to Eli Gadkar

Jyoti Punwani profiles Eli Gadkar, the quintessential Sarvodaya worker whose every action was informed by the values of non-violence and swarajya, and by the lives and thoughts of Tolstoy, Ruskin, Gandhi and most of all, Vinoba Bhave

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"Being Indian, you have no right to be cynical"

Mahasweta Devi, the formidable literary talent and relentless fighter of many causes, talks to Anosh Malekar about the inequity in our society and why it’s necessary for every Indian to raise a voice against injustice

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Interpreter of dreams

By Moushumi Basu

Ramnika Gupta of Jharkhand is a chronicler of marginal cultures. She has scoured the country to document the wonderful diversity of tribal literature that goes back 3,000 years, told in 90 known tribal languages in India

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Niti, nyaya and perfect justice

By Rashme Sehgal

The theory of justice must be more concerned with the elimination of removable injustices than with defining a hypothetical perfectly just society, says Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen in an interview to Infochange

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Laxmi Orang's fight for justice

By Ratna Bharali Talukdar

Undeterred by the brutal attack on her during a public rally, Laxmi Orang wants to contest the Lok Sabha elections from Tezpur in Assam to ensure the voice of her Adivasi community is heard in the corridors of power

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'Women are the strongest critics of fundamentalist groups'

By Rajashri Dasgupta

Pakistani social activist Khawar Mumtaz talks about the importance of resolving conflict and the role that women can and have played in bringing about a more just and equitable society

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Vijay Tendulkar: An artist and an activist

By Amrita Shah

Renowned playwright, novelist and activist Vijay Tendulkar, who died on May 19, discusses, in this interview recorded last year, the role and responsibilities of the artist, the importance of freedom of expression, and the frightening dichotomies of our times

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Irom Sharmila: Eight years on, and still fighting

By Deepti Priya Mehrotra

A profile of the unique rebel who is fighting for a repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act in Manipur, by the author of a new book on Irom Sharmila

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'My fasting is a means; I have no other'

By Kavita Joshi

Manipuri activist Irom Sharmila, who has been on a fast for six years demanding repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act 1958, is currently in custody at AIIMS, New Delhi. In this interview with a filmmaker, she discusses her motivation

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Backgrounders

Agriculture And Food Security : Background & Perspective

Agriculture And Food Security : Background & Perspective

By Devinder Sharma

Pre-Independence India suffered repeated famines, drought and food shortages. But following the Green Revolution in the '60s, yields and foodstocks rose manifold. Now, 30 years later, Indian farmers have realised the follies of their tryst with intensive agriculture. Despite 70 per ...

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Analysis

The organic foods divide in India

The organic foods divide in India

By Rahul Goswami

The divide between farmers growing and selling organic produce in India and the major organic foods and beverages retailers is widening, to the detriment of organic farmers. This was evident at Biofach India 2013 held in Bengaluru

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Features

Ragi over rice

Ragi over rice

By Ananda Siddhartha

As in the rest of India, in Pavagada taluka of Karnataka, ragi is losing out to rice, groundnut and other cash crops. Until 15 years ago, it was the reverse. What are the market and policy pressures that have caused this reversal, and what are its consequences on health and nutri...

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Books & Reports

Vertical farms

Vertical farms

By Sudhirendar Sharma

A new book by Dickson Despommier posits the farm of the future as a vertical farm over 30 floors in any city centre. Powered by renewable energies a vertical farm could meet the food needs of 50,000 people, consume 70-95% less water, restrict the use of harmful agro-chemicals and...

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Punjab Series

Nation's food bowl in crisis

By Anosh Malekar

When the state that was the country's biggest agricultural success story in the 1970s tops the list of indebted farmers, it is obvious that there is something very rotten in the state of agriculture in the country. A three-part series that looks at the agriculture crisis in India's fo...

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News

Stories of change

Nalbari farmers resume cultivation after 25 years

By Ratna Bharali Taukdar

Thousands of farmers in Borigog-Barbhag block, in lower Assam’s Nalbari district, joined hands to dredge a 15-km stretch of a water channel that had blocked and flooded farmlands across 50 villages. For 25 years, farmers had abandoned work on their waterlogged lands. No...

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Changemakers

Urban poverty and the food crisis

A grain in an empty bowl: Government services in the urban context

By Maheen Mirza

Anganwadis, ICDS and PDS are huge government programmes meant to cater to the health and nutritional requirements of the poor. Yet 72.4% of urban poor children in Madhya Pradesh are underweight, 60.4% are undernourished and almost nine out of 10 are anaemic. The fifth and final part o...

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Backgrounders

IT And Development : Background & Perspective

IT And Development : Background & Perspective

By Aditya Dev Sood

What use can a computer be to someone earning less than a dollar a day? What use is information technology in a country that has a low penetration of telephony and computers, where even electricity is not assured, and where millions are still illiterate? These are standard questions...

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Analysis

Free culture for a free society

By V Sasi Kumar

What is it that prompts a group of people in Calicut to start the Chamba Swatantra Cinema Project? How did the world move from copyrights over knowledge, introduced in the 16th-18th centuries and codified as the Statute of Anne, to free software, free knowledge and free culture? And w...

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Features

Do you want to be watched?

The new rules for surveillance under the IT Act are an assault on our freedom. They also seem misguided, says Sunil Abraham . How many terrorists or criminals will be arrested in India thanks to the new ID requirements at cybercafés or a ban on public wi-fi? Intelligence work cannot be replaced...

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Changemakers

Stories of change

The people's voice

By Sherna Gandhy

Every citizen in this country has a right to be heard. But what happens when you live in an area where no mainstream media organisation bothers to penetrate, and when you speak a language no media organisation knows or understands? CGNet Swara uses mobile telephony to break through th...

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News

India turns to ICT for better delivery of welfare schemes

Bihar will become the first state in the country to videograph the distribution of PDS coupons to weed out ineligible recipients. And the Union human resources ministry proposes to use a cheap, indigenously made tablet PC to record BPL and caste data

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Digital Divides

OPENSPACE

 OpenSpace Talk Think Act for change
Our youth forum

KIDSFORCHANGE

Food diaries of poor children
Stories for children

VIDEOS

In Search of My Home
Infochange documentaries

AUDIO FILES

The visible scares of Kashmir
Infochange audio stories

FILM FORUM

REVIEWS OF FILMS
Reviews of documentary films