The barefoot family. Photo by Beena Sarwar

Sri Lankan vignette: Grassroots education thrives amid rural poverty

With free education for all between five to 16 years instituted since 1945, Sri Lanka boasts the highest literacy rate, nearly 99 per cent , in the South Asian region.

What is the purpose of life?

It is the nature of the human brain that when we go deeper into anything then we all discover the truth and beauty in this world, and this process helps us understand the purpose of our existence and life.  

Ravindra Randeniya: Thespian of a bygone era of Sri Lankan cinema

As I heard Ravindra’s colleagues reflect on his life, his work, and his character over time, I couldn’t help reflecting on where Sri Lankan cinema had been and what it could be. In the 1980s and 1990s, and even earlier, Sri Lanka had been a top destination for international productions. Steven Spielberg had come here with Harrison Ford. So had Gregory PeckWilliam HoldenElizabeth Taylor, and Bo Derek.

Remembering a Pakistani peace activist, a staunch proponent of friendship in South Asia

My grandfather’s journey across Wagah is a story I have heard Karamat Sahib narrate many times. As I write, I can hear his raspy voice recount it to me, as he did when I joined him for the immersion of Kuldip Nayar’s ashes.

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Bangladesh PM Hasina comes to the rescue of rickshaw-puller family

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has taken the family of Shampa Khatun, a child in Jamalpur who was compelled to work as a rickshaw-van puller, under her wing

The sound of Indian music at the Grammys

Amid all the noise about snubs and transparency, there are a few Indian tunes that have struck the right note at the Grammy Award nominations this year

First-of-its-kind museum to conserve sacred trees of Sikhism

Punjab Governor V.P. Singh Badnore on Monday virtually inaugurated the first-of-its-kind Museum of Trees -- a unique environmental project here for conservation of sacred trees of Sikhism after which many Sikh gurudwaras are named

‘World’s loneliest elephant’ in Pakistan finds a new life

For years no one cared for his fate; he lived a lonely life, much in chains, for 35 years in a Pakistani zoo, where he had come as a gift from Sri Lanka

Google doodle marks Munier Chowdhury's 95th birth anniversary

Search giant Google has created a new doodle on its homepage in Bangladesh, celebrating the life of Bangladeshi playwright Munier Chowdhury to mark the 95th anniversary of his birth

A Maldives getaway for Bollywood stars

The Maldives has become the new haunt of Bollywood actors. From Katrina Kaif, Disha Patani, Tiger Shroff, Tara Sutaria, Aadar Jain, Varun Dhawan, Tapsee Pannu to Rakul Preet Singh, Angad Bedi and Neha Dhupia, Sonakshi Sinha, well the list is endless, all have visited the Indian Ocean paradise recently

Kashmir's Tibet Baqaal family says they are tortured for keeping Sufi tradition alive

Aadil Tibet Baqaal, 40, teaches music in the Kashmir University's Institute of Music and Fine Arts, keeping up the tradition of his legendary grandfather, Mohammad Abdullah Tibet Baqaal whose voice still continues to stir hearts and minds of Kashmiris cutting across religious barriers

Rajasthan's Champa Ram beats all odds to get into IIT Madras

Resident of a remote village in Rajasthan's Jodhpur district, Champa Ram recently secured admission in IIT Madras - Civil Engineering department after beating all odds, including losing his mother and father while he was preparing for the IIT

OTT wave takes flavors of India into global showbiz space

Slowly but surely, India and Indianness are foraying the world of showbiz in the West, and much of it has to do with the country's growing presence in the OTT space

Former Nepal cricket captain Khadka nominated for ICC’s associate player of decade

Former Nepalese cricket team captain Paras Khadka was nominated by the International Cricket Council for the ICC men’s Associate Player of the decade on Tuesday

'Delhi Crime' wins International Emmy for Best Drama Series

The acclaimed Indian web series "Delhi Crime" has won the Best Drama Series award at the 48th International Emmy Awards, held virtually this year owing to the ongoing Covid pandemic

British social worker braves dengue, Covid, Cobra-bite in Rajasthan

A Briton social worker who has been coming to India to help local artisans through his charity organisation combated dengue, malaria and corona but came out of all the challenges unscathed

Nepal's museums reopen after eight months

Since March, Nepal’s museum curators have been in deep despair due to the extended Covid-19 lockdown, and the ban on public gatherings

Religious fellow feeling at Chhat: When a Muslim man helped in a Hindu festival

The Chhat festival is largely celebrated in Bihar, in eastern India, where women pay tributes to the sun god in thanksgiving for the bounty of nature

'Hyderabad's Nizam never discriminated against people on basis of religion'

Seventh Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan, the last ruler of erstwhile Hyderabad State and the architect of THE modern city of Hyderabad, was a visionary who never discriminated against people on the basis of religion, says his grandson Nawab Mir Najaf Ali Khan