Nine Richest Indians Now Own Wealth Equivalent to Bottom 50% of the Country

by Akhil Kumar

The Wire | January 21, 2019

Nine Richest Indians Now Own Wealth Equivalent to Bottom 50% of the Country
Credit: Atul Loke, Panos / Oxfam

New Delhi: “Rising wealth inequality threatens the social fabric of the nation,” says the Oxfam Inequality Report 2019, released on Monday.

The report details shocking levels of wealth inequality in the country, adding that wealth is being further concentrated in the hands of the richest while the poor are pushed deeper into deprivation. “High levels of wealth disparity subverts democracy,” the report says.Read More »


India: How Institutions are Trying to Make Us Forget Rohith Vemula

The Wire | January 19, 2019

It’s been three years since a Dalit student and PhD candidate at the University of Hyderabad committed suicide, but the wounds the incident brought to light are still being ignored by institutions across the country.

University campuses and cultural spaces keep refusing or backing out of events  meant to memorialise Vemula’s life and work. This year, communities across the country decided to mark the date of Vemula’s demise with a screening of the documentary We Have Not Come Here to Die. However, finding a venue proved to be difficult in some cases.Read More »

Bhagat Singh in Prison

by Chaman Lal

Frontier | Vol. 51, No. 28, Jan 13-19, 2019

THE earliest record of Bhagat Singh’s writings dates back to 1918 when he was 11 years old, and they were postcards he had written in Urdu and Punjabi to his grandfather and an aunt, Hukam Kaur. Collections of Bhagat Singh’s writings began to appear only in the 1970s, and the latest collections in Urdu and Marathi comprise 125 writings of Bhagat Singh, including 53 letters. With the addition of five more letters discovered in 2017-18 to the collections, Bhagat Singh’s writings number 130, apart from his Jail Notebook.

In this process of searching for Bhagat Singh’s writings, this writer located five letters of his in his trial proceedings edited by MJS Waraich, which were then published in The Tribune in 2007. Following this, he found 10 more letters from the exhibition titled “The Trial of Bhagat Singh” held in 2008 in the newly built Supreme Court museum complex. The Supreme Court gave him a digital copy of the exhibition and the permission to use the contents with acknowledgements. The 10 letters were published in The Hindu of August 15, 2011, along with the rare photograph of Bhagat Singh and B K Dutt, first published on April 12, 1929, in Bande Matram from Lahore.Read More »

India: Woman Who Entered Sabarimala Injured in Attack by Mother-In-Law

The Wire | January 15, 2019

New Delhi: Kanakurga, one of the two women of menstrual age who made history by entering the Sabarimala temple after the Supreme Court’s historic judgment, was attacked by relatives after she returned home on Monday.

Kanakadurga, a 39-year-old civil servant, entered the temple on January 2 and was forced to go into hiding after facing threats from right-wing protestors. According to The News Minute, she was attacked by her mother in law and sustained a head injury. She has been admitted to a hospital in Malappuram district.

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India: Kerala’s Women Workers Have Won the ‘Right to Sit’, But Their Struggle Is Far From Over

by Muhammed Sabith

The WireThe Wire | January 14, 2019

Kannur: “We now have more stools in the shop than we really need,” a saleswoman at a prominent textile shop in Kannur said in response to how the new labour law passed by the Kerala assembly has changed her workplace environment.

The Kerala Shops and Commercial Establishments (Amendment) Act, 2018, which was passed in December, guarantees improved working conditions in commercial shops.

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Indian police detain communist leaders during largest-ever strike

by Steve Sweeney

Morning Star | January 08, 2019

COMMUNIST Party of India (Marxist) leaders from West Bengal, Sujan Chakraborty and Anadi Sahoo were detained by police during India’s largest-ever national strike today.

They were arrested in Kolkata as an estimated 200 million took part in the first day of two days of action across India involving at least 10 trade unions.Read More »