I’ll start today with some news features which caught the eye and interest.

Sandhya Jadhav graduating while in jail (DNA India):  This is the story of Sandhya, who in her self defence, killed the person who was trying to rape her. She was convicted for homicide and given a seven year sentence. While in jail, she learnt Marathi and then took the Sociology course from nearby Nagpur University. She has now graduated and has in fact been hired by Nagpur University as a clerk in the despatch department. Apparently she is the first woman prisoner to graduate while still in jail. A good story

$1 per annum salary – symbolism? (Economic Times): Vikram Pandit, the CEO of Citibank, has redesigned his annual salary. He will now be paid $1 per annum. On the other hand, his other executives have received significant increases in their compensation including various dividends. So what is this in aid of? Symbolism? Will it do anything to revive the ailing bank?

The Great Khali and Kasab (DNA India): The Great Khali had his bit to say about Kasab. He wants the fellow hanged. While he concedes that fair trial, justice, etc must be followed, in the end, he wants to see Kasab swinging. Why is this news story significant? Again from the one above, symbolism. The world is living on token gestures and speeches and stuff like that.

And now for something from arts and literature

Tim Burton Exhibition at the MOMA: The art that one is familiar with in his movies comes alive in this exhibition.

Steig Larsson, Millennium and Lisbeth Salander (Prospect Magazine): Those familiar with Larsson’s trilogy will enjoy this piece. Personally, this Millennium concept is really refreshing and for a non-Scandinavian, opens up a new geography and culture. There are some minuses – the length of all three books, the verbose descriptions (based on the English translations) and a bit of cliched / hackneyed characters. But the character of Lisbeth rocks – a person you hate and admire at the same time.

Origami Hats using currency notes (Boing Boing): Unusual hats. Keeping the image of the key personality in the currency note intact, we have different hats for different people.

I will finally close this with this blog post by my former professor at IIMB, S Sadagopan

500 million mobile subscribers in India (S Sadagopan):  Prof Sadagopan writes and I quote:

With Telecom likely to be the largest contributor to GDP and the creator of largest number of jobs in rural India soon, imaginative exploitation of the phenomenon can change the face of India. Mobile services, broadband, mobile e-mail and Internet are the next set of challenges. One hopes that government quickly clears the policy muddle that has been holding up 3G license; once again Government should not get greedy and look for huge “License fee”

500 million is more than the population of more than 80% of all the countries. Imagine the power of this connected community.

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