A Collinsian Triad

An Incurable Romantic: The Incredible Journey of Lalgudi Jayaraman by Lakshmi Devnath And Foreword By Pandit Ravi Shankar from Harper Collins, India.

Lalgdi Jayaraman was a colossus in the firld of carnatic music, much-acclaimed by musicians across the globe. his musical style, the Lalgudi Bani, distinctive enough to be named after him, revolutionized the art of violin playing andserved as a vehicle for his creative expressions as a path-breaking accompanist, soloist and composer.

This engagingbiography deftly incorporates facts with trivia to create anarrative that is at once historical and anecdotal, informative andinteresting. Intertwining the threads of his life with the strings ofthe violin, it is also an examination of the violin in the Indianmusic tradition and Lalgudi’s role in ensuring that his belovedinstrument got its due on the national and international stage.

Rs. 599, in paperback, 464 pages, ISBN: 9789350291887

Shooting for a Century: The India-Pakistan Conundrum by Stephen P. Cohen from Harper Collins, India.

The India-Pakistan rivalry has been labeled as intractable. In thirty-five years this armed standoff will be a century old, and the chances of realizing that dubious anniversary seem quite good. The rivalry is one reason why South Asia remains the least integrated region in the world.

Shooting for a Century is the first comprehensive survey of the deep historical, cultural, and strategic differences that make it probable this conflict will endure, despite many efforts by the international community to resolve it. Stephen Cohen draws on his rich and varied experiences in South Asia and develops a comprehensive theory of why the dispute is intractable and suggests ways in which it may be ameliorated.

In the past fifteen years the stakes have become higher for both countries: each has acquired nuclear weapons and had multiple crises, and Pakistan has shown signs of failure. Ironically, India is booming, but the time for normalization may not have come yet, and there are groups on both sides that would oppose it.

Can the two states resolve the many territorial and identity issues that divide them? Are there possibilities for their cooperation on one level, even if antagonisms remain? Should normalization from the bottom up be encouraged, or do they have to agree on resolving strategic conflicts first? Cohen provides an authoritative and instructive examination of these and similarly important topics.

Rs. 599, in paperback, 280 pages, ISBN: 9789351160151

The New Bihar: Governance and Development by N. K. Singh And Nicholas Stern from Harper Collins, India.

During the 1990s, Bihars development failed to benefit from the acceleration in Indias economic growth and, in fact, slowed compared to the 1980s, principally because of a steep decline in the already low standards of governance Bihars fortunes of governance and economic performance changed dramatically after November 2005, when Nitish Kumar government came to power. Within a short time, major initiatives were launched in improving governance, infrastructure, education especially primary and for girl children, health and agriculture.

Significant improvements in law and order presumably induced and allowed a resurgence of economic activity in construction, trade and hotels/restaurants and this has boosted the states growth prospects. The road ahead is long and arduous. But the last six years have shown that rapid economic development is possible in Bihar. To maintain the momentum of growth, the recent improvements in governance have to be consolidated and strengthened.

Eminent economists like Amartya Sen, Kaushik Basu, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Meghnad Desai, Shankar Acharya, Arvind Virmanai, Govind Rao, Sudipto Mundle, Y.V. Reddy, Arvind Panagariya, M.S, Swaminathan and Yogender Alagh among others analyse the remarkable turnaround witnessed by Bihar. Tarun Das, Deepak Parekh, Lord Billimoria, K.V. Kamath and Isher Judge Ahluwalia speak of the opportunities and challenges for the state. This is a must read for anyone interested in governance and development and about the Bihar Model of Development which can be replicated in other states of India.

Rs. 799, in hardcover, 360 pages, ISBN: 9789350296417