Going to bat for our guardians of the night

Since 1972, the Indian Wildlife Protection Act has cast fruit bats into the schedule V category. It means they are considered ‘vermin’—like crows, mice, and rats. Except for Salim Ali’s Fruit Bats, Kolar Leaf-Nosed Bats and Wroughton’s Free-Tailed Bats, the rest are unprotected. Even stranger is that the Wildlife Act still does not recognize the... Continue Reading →

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Whose life or death is it anyway?

We may be ungrateful for what we have because we think we deserve more. In the process, we forget to ask ourselves - who owes us anything at all? When our plans are left to die in the gutter, is there a someone we can hold accountable? If our tireless efforts go south, whose collar... Continue Reading →

But first, we need to talk about the floods in Kerala

Kerala is wounded. Its people are suffering. Nearly 400 have been killed due to the recent floods that are ravaging its citizens, as well as its neighbors in Karnataka. The loss of livelihood has been unimaginable. If you live outside of South India, you may not have heard of the crisis. Hell, I live about... Continue Reading →

Eat crow, scratch the itch or die trying

Some of my best comebacks occur to me only after the argument has ended. I do not act on it. Obviously, that will be childish and ineffective. It is tempting, though. Especially, when I am dealing with road rage caused by mouthy traffic violators. I tend to lose my cool around them. Many a time... Continue Reading →

Life is not a box of chocolates; it is a flock of flamingos

I have started to go bird-watching again. My body seems to have regained some of its strength. So, I have been visiting bird-friendly areas; to re-acclimatize myself to their sights, smells and sounds. But, this is not the part of the narrative in which the protagonist reconnects with something he loves. And miraculously - everything... Continue Reading →

Republic nation of rape

At an outdoor event a few years ago, a group of youngsters was promoting awareness of the rising number of sex crimes in India. They were strongly urging those nearby to just say "NO" to rape. The first thing I wondered was whether anyone had walked up to them and nervously insisted on saying "YES"... Continue Reading →

A house that built me

Many of the houses I grew up in never felt like home to me. No matter how sturdy their foundations were. How well-cemented the bricks. All the fine craftsmanship that had gone behind them. They lacked the comfort and warmth I wanted under a roof. Or they belonged to an ecosystem that seemed alien to... Continue Reading →

8 more reasons why Madras wasn’t about the filter coffee

Read Part 1 (1) Madras was a weekend at Bangalore; a chance to experience a more “western” lifestyle. We stared at liquor marts until conjunctivitis sets in. We gawked at women smoking outside tea shops because our mothers and aunties would never do that. We also took photographs of each other striking soft-porn poses on MG Road. Madras was... Continue Reading →

Land of the free, home of the grave

I read what people have to say about national politics on Twitter. During lunchtime, I browse through newsfeeds that unattractively hog TV screens. That’s as politically-inclined as I can be. But I pay my taxes. And I form opinions. I don’t have kids. So I tend to take things personally. Especially, my ideologies. Some nights... Continue Reading →

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