Why Malnutrition Grows In Rising, Urban India

Children having lunch at a malnutrition treatment centre in a Mumbai slum. Image: Dilnaz Boga   Saleema Habib, 33, stares vacantly ahead as the local social worker Zahira Shaikh jots down the details of how her three-month-old infant died. The baby had not been keeping well for two weeks and had died of diarrhoea, she … Continued

Last 5 Years, Number Of Undernourished Indians Rises

Health workers measure the height of severely malnourished two-year-old girl Rajni at the nutritional rehabilitation centre of Shivpuri district in Madhya Pradesh.   India has the highest number of undernourished people in the world at 194.6 million–about 12 million more than the Pakistani population–down 7% over the past two decades, but up 2.6% over the … Continued

Coal Kills Indians. Can The Sun Power India?

Workers carrying a photovoltaic panel in a solar park in Patan, Gujarat.   Third of a three-part series assessing India’s energy options as climate-change gathers pace   The first and second part of this series largely argued that India–the world’s third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases but 127th in per capita emissions–had few short-term economic options … Continued

Why India Must Submit To King Coal—For Now

Workers at a coal mine in West Bengal.   Second of a three-part series assessing India’s energy options as climate change gathers pace.   Mumbai: Coal generates over 75% of India’s electricity and is among the cheapest energy sources available. But its main advantage over other feasible alternatives is that it is largely immune to … Continued

Indians, Marginal Polluters. So Why Cut Coal?

Women carrying coal from a mine near Dhanbad, Jharkhand.   First of a three-part series assessing India’s energy options as climate change gathers pace   Mumbai: India’s development dilemma centres around a basic calculation: the carbon emission for an average Indian is only marginally higher than the carbon dioxide produced in flying one passenger from … Continued

$94 Billion On Basic Education Doesn’t Address Teaching Crisis

  In February 2015, the western state of Maharashtra held its annual evaluation tests for teachers of government-run schools, those who teach (a) classes I to V and (b) classes VI to VIII.   These were the results:   Maharashtra Teacher Test Results Category Total registered Total present Total absent Passed in the exam Pass … Continued ...

For India’s Farmers, Harder Life Ahead: Latest Studies

  The unseasonal rain and erratic weather unsettling the Indian farmer—and the nation’s agriculture, economy and politics—are no aberrations.   Extreme rainfall events in central India, the core of the monsoon system, are increasing and moderate rainfall is decreasing —as a part of complex changes in local and world weather—according to a clutch of Indian … Continued

A Farmer’s Life Crisis—And India’s Farming Predicament

Ramlal, 35, of UP’s Rajwada village, could not escape the effects of India’s increasingly uncertain weather, despite being part of India’s farming elite and its middle class. His wheat farm has been devastated, and government compensation does not cover even 13% of his losses. Image: Bhasker Tripathi, Gaon Connection   Rajwada (Uttar Pradesh)/ Mumbai: Lean, … Continued

A Bangalore Neighbourhood’s Toxic Air Portends India’s Future

  On the day this story was written, April 10, 2015, the area with India’s most toxic air—among 10 cities where a new National Air Quality Index functions—was south Bangalore’s BTM Layout, a booming residential area dotted with restaurants and located conveniently near office towers and a web of highways.   There wasn’t enough data … Continued

Keeping Chicken Healthy Threatens India’s Health

  Outside the northern city limits of Bangalore, in a commercial poultry farm, cages packed with screeching chicken, sit on metal stilts. In a corner of the farm, men pack jute bags with bird feed. One of the workers–who would only say his name is Kumar–reveals the chicken feed is made in-house, and “medicines” are … Continued