Heritage Home, where old traditions linger

It is all about heritage, about the deeply ingrained traditions of Old Dhaka. And in these older quarters of the capital city, food is a pivotal part of the rich tradition, ingrained in the spirit of the... More

In Sri Lanka’s Werellegama temple, a venerable Buddhist monk shapes the minds...

The monks file past serenely, chanting Buddhist verses. The youngest is at the very end of the line and tries hard not to trip on his robes. He is five years old. The monks have arrived from a More

Are the lights going out on Bangladesh’s film industry?

Where movies were once the main mode of entertainment in Bangladesh, today the film industry here struggles for existence. It has been tradition for a new movie to hit the bit screens every Friday, but cinema halls... More

Banning e-cigarettes: As ENDS and tobacco lobbies battle it out, Indian health...

Three months after India’s health ministry issued a blanket ban on the sale, manufacture, distribution, trade, import and advertisements of ENDS or electronic nicotine delivery systems, including e-cigarettes, the country’s customs authorities swung into action in November... More

Kolkata’s iconic Anandabazar Patrika is going through troubled times but nothing suggests...

Slightly over two months after the Kolkata-based Anandabazar Patrika(ABP) Group closed down the relatively new tabloid paper Ebela, journalists and non-journalists employed in the company await with bated breath the distribution of the next round of pink... More

The revelry of kite flying in Old Dhaka and a festival that...

The azure canopy is covered in a riot of colours. There are red, yellow, orange and green kites. Some have longish tails, some have images on either side of the rhombus-shaped paper. Some soar higher than others, while others plunge More

A handful of Kolkata’s Jews whose 19th century synagogues are taken care...

It took a few minutes to locate the Neveh Shalome synagogue in Kolkata’s congested and busy Brabourne Road business district. The synagogue, which is taken care of by Muslims, seems to be desperately trying to make its presence... More

Revisiting Jaffna’s mystique past and its famed Hindu sage Yogaswami’s ashram

It is during the busy Christmas week that I boarded the night bus to Jaffna and taken to a world away from the glitter and glamour of seasonal festivities in the Colombo, which, depending on your temperament, could be just More

Bookswap Sri Lanka; the miracle of multiplying books

Ever walked into a book store, saw a whole heap of books you wanted but realized that there was a mismatch between your want and your purse? Well, among people who fall into the category of bookaholics this may be More

In a Delhi upscale neighbourhood, Bangladeshi immigrants indulge in hashish, Hindi and...

The diminutive man with wispy beard slipped into a cream sleeveless vest. He tugged and straightened his long white kurta that he wore over a lungi with horizontal blue stripes before producing a comb that he More

Have breakfast at midnight at Gulshan’s Butler’s Chocolate Cafe

Chocolate lovers alert! There are all chances that you’ll go on an overdrive and OD on the decadent delights at this smart cafe tucked away in the northern extremities of Gulshan, Dhaka. Butler’s Chocolate Cafe offers More

Enjoy Colombo’s Blue Swan with coffee, snacks, old-world charm and loads of...

Colombo’s café scene is much like mushrooms that keep sprouting constantly. Coffee shops is the in thing now. Tea, that colonial heritage drink the British introduced almost two centuries ago, has kept itself to the fields, with... More


Despite controversy, Afghanistan Peace Process makes major strides

Despite Kabul’s publicly made allegations on the US about ‘selling Afghanistan to the Taliban’ in the peace talks, there is little gainsaying that the Afghan-US war has never been so close to ending through settlement than it is now. While Kabul continues to express its anger over being excluded, there is little, given the legitimacy crisis Kabul is itself facing, that even the principal Afghan actors can do to... More

Regulators and conflict of interest

A governmental body created by a legislature to implement and enforce specific laws, a "Regulatory Agency" or a "Regulator" would usually have quasi-legislative functions, executive functions, and judicial functions. Many laws govern social and economic matters, such as income tax, environmental laws, occupational health and safety laws, real estate law, employment laws, etc. A regulatory agency serves two primary functions in govt: implement the laws and enforce the same. Regulations... More

Is Bangladesh an online state?

Bangladesh is an online state with an incredibly high number of virtual citizens. Few can match them in enthusiasm, participation and enjoyment of what the online world offers, good or bad. Much great stuff happens on the net but so does nasty stuff. It’s also a great producer of cultural and otherwise, not to mention, political ones. The recent spate of actions against online content considered “harmful” have spiked, which,... More

How China might undo Saudi plans for Iran?

The recent Saudi bid to increase its economic and political influence in South Asia (Pakistan and India) is, as I pointed out in my previous stories for SAM, largely informed not just by the imperative of a Saudi economic expansion across Asia and avoid economic doom, but also by the objective of snatching Iran’s share of oil market in this part of the world. This is partly one reason... More

Pakistan receives warning from Iran not to join Saudi proxy war

Pakistan has received a stern warning from Iran's Major-General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps' Qods Force and other senior in the aftermath of the February 13, 2019 attack on their forces by Iranian Baluch militants in the country's restive Sistan and Baluchistan province bordering Pakistan. The new tone from Tehran is a response to Pakistan's recent tilt back toward Saudi Arabia since Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran... More



The fourth summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), held in Kathmandu on August 30 and 31, was “not fruitful” because of the inherent “weakness” of the regional inter-state institution,... More