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To fight climate change, we need to reform the power sector. Right now, it's dysfunctional. Akshay Jaitly and Ajay Shah join Amit Varma in episode 278 of The Seen and the Unseen to share their roadmap for change. Also check out: 1. Akshay Jaitly on Twitter, Linkedin, Nicheless and Substack. Ajay Shah on Twitter and Substack. 2. The lowest hanging f…
 
He grew up breathing Kannada literature -- and he also embraced the globalised world. Sugata Srinivasaraju joins Amit Varma in episode 277 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss this confluence of the old and the new, the near and the far, his society and the world. Also check out: 1. Sugata Srinivasaraju in Outlook, ToI/Mumbai Mirror, New Indian Ex…
 
How did one of the greatest nonviolent movements in history emerge from within the supposedly violent Pathans of the wild frontier? Why do poor people in India vote even though there seems to be no point to it? Why does an ancient garment like the sari endure -- but democracy seem in peril? Mukulika Banerjee joins Amit Varma in episode 276 of The S…
 
We live in times when all Indian Muslims are forced to be aware of their Muslimness. Hussain Haidry joins Amit Varma in episode 275 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about his life, his art and these difficult times we live in. Also check out: 1. Hussain Haidry on Twitter, Instagram and IMDb. 2. Hindustani Musalmaan -- Hussain Haidry. 3. Lat -- Hu…
 
India is in bad shape. Bad economics is one reason why. Economists Rajeswari Sengupta and Shrayana Bhattacharya join Amit Varma in episode 274 of The Seen and the Unseen to take stock of the mess. You don't like dissent? Too bad. We're Bongs, and you cannot shut us up. Also check out: 1. Shrayana Bhattacharya on Twitter, Instagram and Google Schola…
 
He's that Blackstratblues guy. He's done rock, blues, sessions work for Bollywood, and you can't put him in a box. Indie music legend Warren Mendonsa joins Amit Varma and guest co-host Chuck Gopal in episode 273 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about his career, how he only aims to make music that makes him happy, and the common thread that binds…
 
Our freedom fighters didn't just fight the British. They also grappled with each other in the marketplace of ideas and actions. Shruti Kapila joins Amit Varma in episode 272 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe how so many of our founders were also innovative political philosophers -- and how we still fight their battles today. Also check out: 1.…
 
Deepak Shenoy wants to ask Amit Varma about the creator economy. Amit wants to talk to Deepak about finance and his new book. Episode 271 of The Seen and the Unseen is a crossover episode with the Capital Mind Podcast in which Amit and Deepak get a jugalbandi going. Also check out: 1. Deepak Shenoy on LinkedIn and Twitter. 2. Money Wise: Timeless L…
 
Things are bad -- so bad that he's written two books about it. Aakar Patel joins Amit Varma in episode 270 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss politics, the media and his reasons for being hopeful in spite of all the doom and gloom. Also check out: 1. Aakar Patel on Twitter, Amazon, Deccan Chronicle, Business Standard and the Times of India. 2. O…
 
A lifetime in diplomacy gave Nirupama Rao an inside view of the making of the first draft of history. She joins Amit Varma in episode 269 of The Seen and the Unseen to share her life lessons -- and what still keeps her buzzing every day. Also check out: 1. Nirupama Rao on Twitter, Substack, Instagram and her own website. Her bio and work are here. …
 
Russia's invasion of Ukraine is not just a seminal moment in world history, but a teachable one. Pranay Kotasthane and Nitin Pai join Amit Varma in episode 268 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss concepts and frameworks of foreign policy that can help us make sense of this turmoil. If this subject interests you, consider signing up for Takashshil…
 
Indian mainstream media tends to see our country with the gaze of a privileged North Indian man. That is changing. Dhanya Rajendran joins Amit Varma in episode 267 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about her journey in setting up The News Minute, and in deepening our journalism and the conversations we have. Also check out: 1. Dhanya Rajendran on …
 
Historians write about the lives of others -- but what about their own journeys? Ramachandra Guha joins Amit Varma in episode 266 of The Seen and the Unseen to reflect on his notion of home, how he got from there to here, and the strange dreams that sometimes come. Also check out: 1. Rebels Against the Raj -- Ramachandra Guha. 2. Savaging the Civil…
 
Life is beautiful, but we are too busy to notice. Writing is one way to capture the world, and to make our journey memorable. Amitava Kumar joins Amit Varma in episode 265 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe his journey as an author, journalist, artist, Instagrammer -- and to explain the joys of slow-jamming the news. Also check out:1. Amitava K…
 
Intellectuals need to get out of their ivory towers and take their ideas to the people, learning from them in the process. Barun Mitra joins Amit Varma in episode 264 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss what he learnt from his decades combining reflection and activism. Also check out: 1. Barun Mitra on Twitter, and at The Print, Indian Express an…
 
Mrinal Pande, older than our republic, was writing from a time when it was felt that "a woman writing was like a dog walking on two hind legs." She joins Amit Varma in episode 263 of The Seen and the Unseen to share her learnings from a life in literature. Subjects discussed include our society, our languages, gender, politics and the state of our …
 
There was a time when our leaders dived into the public discourse and embraced the world of ideas. Tripurdaman Singh and Adeel Hussain join Amit Varma in episode 262 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe four debates that Jawaharlal Nehru entered with Muhammad Iqbal, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Sardar Patel and Syama Prasad Mookerjee. These old debates m…
 
You may think you have India figured out -- but do you? Rukmini S joins Amit Varma in episode 261 of The Seen and the Unseen to speak about the many layers of India she has uncovered by looking closely at data, and the stories that lie beneath. Also check out: 1. Whole Numbers and Half Truths -- Rukmini S. 2. The Importance of Data Journalism -- Ep…
 
What we mean by art has changed in modern times -- and there has never been a better time to be an artist. Nishant Jain aka Sneaky Artist joins Amit Varma in episode 260 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about his journey, and to share his insights on the creator economy. Also check out: 1. The Sneaky Artist -- Nishant Jain's website. 2. The Sneak…
 
Indian women are lonely in the bedroom, lonely in the kitchen, lonely in the workplace. Shrayana Bhattacharya joins Amit Varma in episode 259 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss the interior and exterior lives of these unseen millions. Also check out 1. Desperately Seeking Shah Rukh: India's Lonely Young Women and the Search for Intimacy and Inde…
 
There has never been a better time to be a creator -- but you need to be productive to make use of it! Deepak Gopalakrishnan aka Chuck Gopal joins Amit Varma in episode 258 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about his journey, and to share his learnings on creation and productivity. Also check out: 1. Earlier episodes of The Seen and the Unseen on …
 
The world is what it is -- but no one knows what that is, and we all see different worlds. Designer and art historian Annapurna Garimella joins Amit Varma in episode 257 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe her passage of seeing, remembering, reflecting. Also check out:1. Annapurna Garimella on Amazon. 2. Sara Rai Inhales Literature -- Episode 25…
 
Data has no ideology, and journalists should always be guided by skepticism. Pramit Bhattacharya joins Amit Varma in episode 256 of The Seen and the Unseen to describe his journey learning the craft and the values of analytical journalism. Also check out: 1. Pramit Bhattacharya's writings in Mint. 2. The Importance of Data Journalism -- Episode 196…
 
In India, we inhabit many worlds, and we live in many languages, many literatures. Sara Rai joins Amit Varma in episode 255 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about her rich life learning to write, learning to read, learning to live. Also check out: 1. Sara Rai on Amazon. 2. “You will be the Katherine Mansfield of Hindi” -- Sara Rai's essay in Cara…
 
He carried cables on a film set. He teamed up with friends named Arvind and Manish to save Delhi. He started a media company that said Boo to advertisers. Abhinandan Sekhri joins Amit Varma in episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen to speak about the many things he's learned during his rich and unconventional life. Also check out: 1. Abhinandan Sek…
 
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