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Private Sector

Road to disaster

Issue Date: Jun 15, 2011
Acheja, a small farming village in Gautam Budh Nagar district in western Uttar Pradesh, had never seen such a large congregation as it did on May 12. The venue was a rice mill. Its verandah was crammed with farmers in white kurta pyjamas and Gandhi caps. They were discussing the recent violence in the area in high-pitched voices. Once in a while, the crowd shouted: “Jab tak dukhi kisan rahega, dharti par toofan rahega (As long as farmers are unhappy, the earth will be in turmoil).”

Profit from the poor

Issue Date: Nov 30, 2010
Ega Mounika was born into debt, lived in debt and died with debts. The college-going 20-year-old of Warangal’s Karimabad village immolated herself on September 25; three days later, she died. “My daughter wanted to release us from debt,” said her father Laxmi Narayan who sustained burn injuries trying to rescue her. He owns a paan shop and always had debts, which is why no bank found him worthy of a loan. So five years ago, when a microfinance institution (MFI) approached her mother, a beedi roller, offering a loan of Rs 10,000, Mounika was quick to say yes. She bought a sewing machine with the money, started a tailoring business, dividing her time between studies and the new machine. “Things were fine for two weeks,” said Narayan, “then we began to default.” Loan repayment is usually weekly in microfinance.

Run from cover

Issue Date: Dec 31, 2009
Saif Siddiqui spent a little under Rs 14,000 on his appendicitis operation three years ago. The 35-year-old dentist from Bhubaneswar relied on an insurance cover for his family from Reliance General Insurance Company Ltd. He paid Rs 5,184 as premium for the policy.

Get your own vaccine

Issue Date: Jul 15, 2009
Shuvam Kumar lay on an iron cot in the tetanus ward of the Nalanda Medical College and Hospital in Patna, Bihar. After four days in the hospital, with stiff jaws and high fever, the two-yearold was too weak to cry when the nurse gave him an injection. There is little hope left of his survival, the family had been informed. His father, a labourer in Galurghat village in Gaya, regrets not getting Shuvam to Patna for the tetanus vaccine immediately after he stepped on a nail in the village. Shuvam was not administered the vaccine after birth either. The vaccine is not available in the village.

The weather mart

Issue Date: Jul 31, 2009
Archita Bhatta and Rohini Rangarajan Met department is not the only one predicting weather in India. Forecasts are now sold by businesses to businesses

Myth of power

Issue Date: Sep 15, 2008
  Hydroelectric projects in Alaknanda and Bhagirathi river basins  

Fanning an alternative

Issue Date: Aug 15, 2008
Today Maharashtra is second only to Tamil Nadu in terms of installed capacity to generate wind power; as on March 31 this year 1,756 mw. The potential? A whopping 3,650 mw in 28 feasible sites.

Reservoir of dams

Issue Date: May 15, 2008
Once you reach Lower Dibang Valley in Arunachal Pradesh, you know you have stepped into the shadowy side of "shining" India--the cell phone stops catching signals, the roads are worn out and the electricity supply, erratic. If you drive 40 km out of its district headquarters Roing to Nizam Ghat and then trek for three hours in Mishmi hills, you will reach Pather Camp, a nowhere destination in absolute wilderness. A helipad is the last thing you will expect here. Yet there it stands, a testimony to the importance of this place.

Non-profit diseases

Issue Date: Jun 30, 2007

Medical education in India does not address larger social needs for health care

Issue Date: Jul 15, 2006
Short-handed Health education should be sensitive to health care
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