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A doctor takes a swab from a child to test for Covid-19 at Kalyanwadi in Dharavi slums, Mumbai on 16 April | PTI

Small pharmacies to private GPs: India must engage informal economies in fighting coronavirus

Indian cities have shown resilience in overcoming challenges. Yet, resilience has not always resulted in improving urban governance and improving lives of urban poor.
File photo | A view of the Outer Ring Road as shot with a drone camera during coronavirus lockdown, in Bengaluru, Saturday, 18 April | PTI

India’s one lesson from Covid crisis and work-from-home: How to build a real smart city

The work-from-home template offers a way for India to re-imagine its model of urbanisation. For that, it must stop aping Western cities’ models from a century ago.
A graveyard (Representational image)

Make graveyards safe for the living. They are reservoirs of antibiotic-resistance bacteria

Rapid urbanisation in many developing countries has meant that informal settlements have begun to sprout near cemeteries.
If we want to understand the spread and control of infectious diseases today, we have to look to the landscapes of extended urbanization and infrastructures that structure contemporary urban life

Coronavirus-like outbreaks start in and spread from edges of cities

To study the spread of coronavirus, we have to look beyond airports to the European automobile and parts industry in central China and transport hubs like Wuhan.
Urbanisation

Smart city technologies can tackle India’s urban explosion. But key questions must be asked

Modern cities have come to produce tremendous quantities of data. Understanding this data will give India a new level of understanding of the urban ecology.
Johannesburg

Africa’s cities are about to boom – and maybe explode

Africa is urbanised, and its future in joining the global economy rests on the success or failure of cities, not rural communities.
Farmers working in a rice paddy field in Karnataka | Wikimedia Commons

Changing land use is making this eastern state in India hotter

The IITs at Bhubaneswar and Kharagpur, and Southampton University analysed satellite data on land use, land cover as well as temperature across Odisha to understand why it was getting hotter.
Skyline of Mumbai | Representational image | Kuni Takahashi/Bloomberg

India’s urbanisation isn’t just happening in cities. Modi govt must tap these new areas

Census towns and other rurban areas bridge the gap between India’s large cities and rural areas, and supply goods and services to the hinterland.
Mumbai city skyline | File photo: Kuni Takahashi/Bloomberg

India must shun Nehruvian metropolis bias & turn to small cities for urban economic growth

India’s urban policy attributes the messiness to migrants, slums and poverty, and its preferred antidote is a Chandigarh-like order.
Workers at a construction site in Delhi (representational image) | Ruhani Kaur/Bloomberg

India’s caste problem has a silver lining: urbanisation, and inter-caste marriage

Unlike villages, search for partners in cities shifts its focus from family and caste networks to friends and professional networks.

On Camera

Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple in Kerala | Commons

Padmanabhaswamy verdict can reduce the rich temple to go to Communists with a begging bowl

The Supreme Court has also ordered a 25-year audit of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple. Even scam-tainted promoters or companies have not had to face such long-term audits.
JioGigaFiber

After luring Google & Facebook, Mukesh Ambani plans to build a global digital company

Mukesh Ambani unveiled a slew of services from Jio, including a 5G network as early as next year and a mega video-streaming platform.

Defence

The new SiG 716 G2 rifles in use with the Indian Army | By special arrangement

Rifles, missiles, ammunition, drones — armed forces on shopping spree amid LAC tensions

Unprecedented emergency powers given to armed forces under the capital budget, for purchases of new equipment and systems, are likely to ease bottlenecks.
Illustration by Soham Sen | ThePrint

Uttar Pradesh is India’s broken heartland, break it into 4 or 5 states

Uttar Pradesh, our largest state by population and most powerful, is also the worst governed. A state with 1-in-6 Indians has no hope because of its size.