the-south-asian Life & Times          July - September 2009



 Current Issue

 Editor's Note

 Cover Story
 Dongria Kondh

 South Asian
 Contemporary Art
 at Christie's

 Apa Sherpa 19th
 time on Everest


 Current Affairs
 Gandhara & Taliban
 - No Love Story




 Obama's Tech

 Vivek Kundra
 Aneesh Chopra

 South Asia's

 Megacities of 2025

 Everest Marathons

 Gin is 'IN'

 'Morning Walk'

 Shovana Narayan

 Swat's Buddhist



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Editor’s Note

This is truly an eclectic issue! There were numerous stories that developed and evolved in the past three months – some painful and some heartening – and we tried to cover as many as we could. More than 2 million people had to flee their homes in Swat in northwest Pakistan where the Taliban had unleashed a reign of terror. Both Swat and Bamiyan have been targeted by Taliban - places that were once a part of the historic kingdom of Gandhara with a rich secular history and traditions of Buddhism. We have covered the artistic legacy of the area, which has suffered immensely at the hands of Taliban.

Apa Sherpa , the diminutive yet giant climber of Everest did it yet again. He broke his own world record of most Everest summits by climbing the mountain for the 19th time in May – and he has confirmed he’ll make a 20th bid next year. And all for a cause – to save the Himalaya. He is a true hero!

In April, President Obama announced the nomination of Aneesh Chopra as the Chief Technology Officer of his administration. He joins Vivek Kundra, the Federal Chief Information Officer, in helping the President fulfil his promise of an efficient, transparent and an effective government. Both Vivek and Aneesh are known for their unconventional and highly successful technology initiatives – and one can only hope that something similar could be implemented in the South Asian region as well.

Our cover story this issue, in the form of a photo essay, is on a marginalized tribe in Orissa. The Dongria Kondh have lived on the forested slopes of Niyamgiri mountain forever. But their habitat and way of life is now threatened by a mining company that wants to mine the mountain for bauxite. And the tribe members are putting up a fight.

Summer evenings to many mean G & Ts – we have covered the best new entrants in the world of gin. They truly are a class apart.

Take care and Cheers!

Roopa Bakshi








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