The South Asian Life & Times - SALT   
  October-December 2012           



 Oct - Dec '12


Editor's Note


Conversation with
 Amin Gulgee

Western Ghats
 - A Magical Refuge

  Threatened Dwellers
 of Western Ghats

  Rom Whitaker
 'Snake Man of India'

Upper Mustang
 -Untouched by Time

American Football
 Kicks Off in India

  Tee Time @ Delhi

 Real Issues
 Women & Sexual

 Book Reviews
 Of Martyrs &

 Sips from a Broken













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Editor’s Note

The Olympics have come and gone, with their highs and lows, leaving many of us with Olympic Withdrawal. Life suddenly came to a standstill. We all had our Olympic moments – mine was when Yogeshwar Dutt won his bronze in 60 kg freestyle wrestling. It was the manner of his win that made it memorable.  He fought five opponents that day – three in quick succession - in less than an hour before his bout for the bronze.  As he stood in the red corner, his eye badly bruised and swollen, ready to take on the North Korean Jong Myong Ri, he was prepared for the finest bout of his life. In the third and final round, Yogeshwar twirled Jong Myong on the mat with lightning speed that left the North Korean stunned. Points rolled in faster than the twirls – and the medal was his.

Our heartiest congratulations to all the winners.

Afghanistan won a bronze in taekwondo. What was extraordinary was the fact that Afghanistan sent a small contingent of six athletes and came back with one medal – these are extraordinary statistics. One medal : six athletes! This was way ahead of Great Britain’s 1 medal : 9 athletes and not too far behind USA’s 1 medal : 5 athletes. Well done Afghanistan!

Mary Kom was the other amazing story of 2012 Olympics. A petite 29-year-old mother-of-two from Manipur won a bronze in the first ever women’s boxing event. And what was more endearing was – how in all humility she apologised to the nation for not bringing home the gold. Mary – the colour was not important – you did the country proud! You are the Best.

While we are feting Mary and Saina – the two women medal winners – there are countless women in the country suffering sexual abuse in some form or the other, every day. And these crimes are on the rise. We need men to speak out publicly against such violations. Sushil Kumar, Yogeshwar Dutt, Vijender Singh – our new sport icons – could be invaluable in spreading the message that Real Men don’t violate women. I hope one day they’ll be the Real Heroes to the cause of women.

At last – the Western Ghats have the umbrella they needed. Thanks to the efforts of the former Minister for Environment – Mr Jairam Ramesh - the Western Ghats now have the status of a World Heritage Site. That’s good news for the flora and fauna of the region.  We have made an effort to introduce you, our readers, to some of the dwellers of this truly evergreen magical haven.

Wishing all our readers a Happy Eid, a Prosperous Diwali, a Merry Christmas, and a Joyful 2013.

Roopa Bakshi


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