The South Asian Life & Times - SALT   
  January - March 2012           




Editor's Note


  Cover Story
Dr Karan Singh

  Tech Stories 2011
  Steve Jobs

  Harish Hande

  Umar Saif

  Azim Premjee

  Adventure & Sports
  Mingma Sherpa -
  the 1st South Asian
  to climb all 8000ers

  Photo Feature
  Bhutan Royal

  Bhutan Royals'
  State Visit to India &
  Rajasthan visit


  Floods in South Asia

   Famine in Somalia

  Performing Arts
  Kumud Diwan

  Space Exploration
  Juno to Jupiter

  Earth-like planet

  Women of the Year

  2011 Recap

  Book Picks 2011
  Steve Jobs by
  Walter Isaacson

   Wonder of the Age

   No Way Down

  Vishnu - Hinduism's
  Blue-skinned Savior

  Sentinels of Raisina

   Northeast Trilogy




 the print gallery

 the art gallery













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Editor’s Note

This is a Special Issue - a recap of the significant stories of 2011. Some were mainstream and some not. Some were South Asian and others not. Yet, these stories impacted us all as individuals and as members of a global community. We had riots, protests, calamities, nuclear disaster - and a few royal weddings.

An inspiring story from South Asia was that of Mingma Sherpa from Nepal who successfully climbed the fourteen tallest mountains on earth – an exclusive group also called 8000ers. Twenty-three people before him had also achieved this remarkable climbing feat but what made Mingma’s achievement very special was the fact that he summited all peaks on first attempts. He has not been given due recognition by the mountaineering fraternity for this rare feat.

For this very special issue, we also wanted a very special person on the cover – somebody inspirational, a leader by example, a thinker. Dr Karan Singh is all this and more. Deemed by many as the conscience-keeper of the nation, we bring you a conversation with him.

The defining characteristic of India has been that of a secular country, with equal justice and opportunity for all. Through hard work, we all strive to achieve a decent standard of living. Many people are working two jobs trying to make ends meet. Yet, untested, inexperienced, and untried graduates-to-be, in their early 20s,  from some of the premier institutes of the country are being offered annual salary packages close to 10 million rupees – roughly equal to $200,000. This translates to almost 30,000 rupees a day! And this is at the start of a career! It is difficult to see the rationale. We seem to be moving towards becoming more ‘unequal’ – despite the awareness that more equal the society, the stronger and healthier it is. The chief executives, in many top companies, earn more every day than the average annual salary of a worker. India, perhaps, is among the countries with the greatest inequality of income.  This was not Mahatma Gandhi’s or Nehru’s economic vision of the ‘Indian Dream.’  We could, however, strive to reclaim it.

Wishing all our readers a safe and a happy 2012,

Roopa Bakshi


Read the entire article in the print edition of The South Asian Life & Times



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