Author Jeet Thayil looks at today's Indian society and culture from an unusual perspective. He spent two decades of his life as an opium addict, immersed in the dark underbelly of Bombay — now known as Mumbai.
An Indian boy gets his eyes scanned for enrollment in a nationwide ID project in 2011. Many Indians, especially the poor, lack identification documents, which restricts their access to many government services.
Some 75,000 babies are born every day in India. The total population is 1.2 billion and climbing. That's a lot of people to keep track of, and the Indian government has struggled to keep up.
Many Indians, especially the poor, don't have any ID, which makes it increasingly difficult for them to be full participants in a society that is rapidly modernizing. But a new project aims to fix that.
India has been home to vegetarians for centuries. Many Hindus and most Buddhists do not eat meat, but commentator Sandip Roy says in today's India, meat is what's for dinner.
When my friend Lakshmi, a lifelong vegetarian, went to America as a student more than 20 years ago she knew she was in for a hard time. Vegetarian dorm food meant a lot of cheese pizza, french fries, pasta and if she was lucky, grilled vegetables.
After 10 years in San Francisco's vegetarian mecca, when she returned to live in India a few years ago, she had an unexpected identity crisis.
Starbucks last week announced a plan to open stores in India by the end of the year. Let's follow up on that. This move might certify India as a rising coffee-drinking power, but it also signals a cultural change in a country that is devoted to tea. Elliot Hannon reports from New Delhi.
ELLIOT HANNON, BYLINE: The sound of a barista hard at work may be a familiar one in the U.S. or in Europe.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON: Cappucino would be fine, ma'am?