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Empire’s Garden: Assam And The Making Of India by Jayeeta Sharma, Permanent Black, Rs 750
In the mid-19th century the British created a landscape of tea plantations in Assam. Claiming that local peasants were indolent, the British soon began importing indentured labour from central India. In the 20th century the migrants were joined by others who came voluntarily to seek their livelihoods. In this book, Jayeeta Sharma explains how the settlement of more than one million migrants in Assam irrevocably changed the region’s social landscape.
Infrastructure At Crossroads, The Challenges Of Governance by Gajendra Haldea, OUP, Rs 750
This book is a rare insider view of infrastructure sector reforms in India. It details the processes involved at different stages, from conception to implementation, of diverse infrastructure projects: roads, railways, ports, airports, telecom and power. The author recounts his experience of structuring and negotiating recent mega infrastructure projects and of drafting laws, documents and policies that laid the foundation for private participation in infrastructure.
Urbanizing Citizenship, Contested Spaces In Indian Cities, edited by Renu Desai and Romola Sanyal, Sage, Rs 695
This book interrogates a range of urban spaces— squatter settlement, slum resettlement site, refugee colony, city street and urban mega-event—as sites of citizenship. They show how each of these spaces is made and transformed through modes of control, regulation and governance, as well as through different forms of negotiations and claims by marginalised groups.