Beyond being bais
An innovative initiative of grooming women as home managers could be an example in places where private agencies, providing household help, are exploitative or not up to the mark, writes Usha Rai
attanbehen Kanti Desai (30) looks after the double-storey home of senior citizens Rajendra and Manjula Dhaga in the more affluent area of Ahmedabad. She is no ordinary domestic help. She is a home manager, a title that she wears with pride, having been put through a monthís rigorous training by the Urmila Home Manager programme of the NGO Saath, which, in collaboration with the America India Foundation, provides skilled manpower for different sectors of the fast growing urban economy of Gujarat.

Simple school in the hills
The school in Shaya village of Himachal Pradesh provides quality education to over 200 children. They are given a nourishing meal everyday. The dropout rate is nil, writes Bulbul Sharma
he small school with a gleaming slate roof, nestling amongst the hills of Shaya in Himachal Pradesh, begins every day sharp at 10. Yet many of the students have already gathered in the playing ground long before the bell rings for the school. raspberries.

Letís keep our soldiers happy
The bravery of Indian soldiers is legendary. The government needs to redress their grievances with alacrity, says Lieut-Gen Baljit Singh (retd)
hen the evolution of the concept of nation states got perfected in Europe in the 19th century, the conscripted armed levies were, as a rule, replaced by standing armies. The British were quick to exploit this new lethal instrument of governance to consolidate their overseas colonies into an "empire over which the sun never sets."

Amazing Angkor
The temples of Angkor are simply unique, a stunning blend of spirituality and symmetry, writes Ranjita Biswas
ometimes an image is carried by memory, ensconced somewhere in its deep recesses, and then one day, suddenly, incredibly, it comes alive ó not in an abstract form but in concrete shape.

Art survives recession
With prices still way below what were prevailing before the economic downturn, collectors and investors are doing some serious bottom-fishing, bringing back colour in art, writes Nagmani
or artists it was a culture shock of the personal kind when the art world was struck at its heart by the all-pervasive recession. Works of well-known artists saw a dramatic downturn.

"I donít know how to make a film"
In a conversation with Dibyojyoti Baksi, Mani Ratnam reveals that every time he starts working on a new film, he has to struggle to find the right way to can the shots
e has been making movies for almost three decades and is known as a maverick. But Mani Ratnam says every time he starts working on a new film, he has to struggle to find the right way to can the shots.

Thereís method in his acting
Ranjan Das Gupta chats up master actor Dilip Kumar, whose biography written by Saira Bano, is all set for release soon
agi Nahin Chhoote Ram" Dilip Kumar still sings, note by note, this haunting number from his film Musafir (1957). At his Pali Hill residence, Dilip Kumar is in a contemplative mood.


'ART & SOUL: Behind-the-scenes comedy
by B. N. Goswamy

TELEVISION: Behind-the-scenes comedy

NATURE: Behind-the-scenes comedy

Food talk: Summer special
by Pushpesh Pant

Consumers beware!: You can sue negligent transporters
by Pushpa Girimaji

Globoscope: Much ado about nothing
by Ervell E. Menezes

by David Bird

ULTA PULTATiger tales
by Jaspal Bhatti


Asiaís rising stars
Reviewed by Uttam Sengupta
India China: Neighbours Strangers
Edited by Ira Pande.
HarperCollins (a joint venture with India Today Group & India International Centre).
Pages 455. Rs 699.

Books received

Nariman point
Reviewed by V. Eshwar Anand
Before Memory Fades: An Autobiography
Fali S. Nariman
Hay House India. Pages 459. Rs 599

Remarkable odyssey
Reviewed by Nonika Singh
Made in India: Adventures of a Lifetime
By Biddu. HarperCollins. Pages 252. Rs 399.

Courtroom humour
Reviewed by Rajbir Deswal
Tales from the Bench and the Bar
By Vicaji J. Taraporevala
Penguin Books. Pages 168. Rs 350.

The saint of saints
Reviewed by Kuldip Dhiman
Ramakrishna Paramahamsa: The Sadhaka of Dakshineswar
By Amiya P. Sen.
Penguin/Viking. Pages 178. Rs 325.

Addictive memoir
Reviewed by Julian Hall
Portrait of an Addict as a Young Man
By Bill Clegg.
Cape. Pages 240. £312.99.

Hit and miss
S. Raghunath

Back of the book
Mystery, miracles and masters
The Begum's Secret
by A.K. Srikumar Penguin. Rs.299.

  • Serious Men
    by Manu Joseph
    HarperCollins. Rs 499.

  • A Masterful Spirit
    by Homi J.Bhabha Penguin. Rs.1,299.

  • Extreme American Makeover
    by Mitali Perkins HarperCollins. Rs.199.

  • Illicit
    by Dibyendu Palit Penguin. Rs.150.

  • Aftertaste
    by Namita Devidayal Random House. Rs.399.

  • Miracle on the 17th Green
    by James Patterson
    Hachette Books. Rs.1,161.

  • Ambition's Curse
    by Kishore Pillai
    Indialog Publications. Rs.195.