Tag Archive India

Daily UI – 005 – App Icon

Brief – Design an app icon
This icon is for an e-commerce store ‘ Juice Box ‘, that sells fun, unique and quirky  products ranging from notebooks to barware.
Once inside the app, user will be able to navigate to view product and service categories.
More on this here ( https://www.behance.net/gallery/57641761/Daily-UI-005-App-Icon ).

Hawa Mahal, Jaipur



One questions that pops up quite often in a geographically diverse group is ” Does the caste system really still exist in India? “.

It is rather sad to admit, that discrimination which denies many of dignity and basic human rights is still a reality, only just hidden from mainstream urban culture of India.

‘Dalit’ – a word derived from the Sanskrit word ‘dalita’, meaning ‘crushed’ or ‘destroyed’ – even the word that is used to identify them tells a story of oppression.

Early in August this year, thousands of Dalit’s started a march from Ahmedadbad to Una.  Organisers said the march called ‘Aazadi Koon’ (March for Freedom) has been planned to galvanise the community and will cover a distance of around 350 km.

This wasn’t a first of it’s kind uprising. Dalits have been fighting for basic rights from the time of India’s independence. And yet, the extent of the indignation, even now, is palpable even through the charcoal words of newsprint.

The underprivileged minorities often have it tough, even when they want their voices to be heard, a marathon task, quite literally in this case.

Some facts:

  • This march was triggered as a reaction to the “mob justice” met out by ‘gau rakshaks’ on 4 Dalit men. These men were merely doing their job of skinning an already dead cow ( in this case the cow had died of an lion attack)
  • Dalit families usually skin dead animals and sell the leather they procure, to supplement their often meager incomes
  • Away from the glitz of urban India, Dalits still struggle for decent job opportunities and most are left with no options other than working as landless labourers or as manual scavengers
  • Since the march, a large number of Dalits have given up cleaning and skinning cow carcasses, leading to sanitation concerns in some parts of the country
  • If Dalits were allocated the land as per the Land Ceiling Act, most would not depend on side gigs to support their families. Except, the lands officially allocated never really reached them, instead it was encroached by the people in authority.

For the Dalits of India, the fight is real and one that continues as a daily struggle even today.

Tall man

This message has been floating around, for a while:

” We sent a delegation of 117 sportsmen to the Rio Olympics.  They returned with 2 medals. There was widespread media coverage . There was no shortage of sponsors . Why even Sachin was on call !

Compare that with the Rio Paralympics .

We sent a delegation of 19 . That’s right – nineteen . They’ve already bagged 4 medals ! No media coverage . No sponsors . And God knows where Sachin is !”

Pls Invest your time in forwarding this msg if you are in support of Indian Prides…!!”



I have a problem, when messages that are constructed this way.

People, teams, delegations do not stand tall, because someone else fell short. They stand tall, because of their achievements.

This message would have been so much more uplifting if it spoke of victories, without comparing it with another’s failure. There is no pride to be taken when you compare victory with someones moment of dejection. There is no victory, in another mans downfall.

That said, the Indian athletes did perform well at the Rio Paralympics bringing home two golds and one each of a silver and bronze.

This year India had sent its largest ever delegation in the history of summer paralympic games i.e.19 competitors in 5 sports . Also, it has been India’s best ever performance in the history of the summer Paralympic games with a total of 4 medals won till now ( 2 Gold , 1 Silver and 1 Bronze ) with Devendra Jhajharia breaking the World Record to win a gold medal at the Paralympics. 🙂

Beautiful inspiration that hardwork and determination, can equal gold.



Product design – coffee table

A coffee table, inspired from the frequent sights when walking the streets of India.



Like houses and apartments, whose windows open up to cloth lines of drying laundry :



and of, street carts loaded with an array of goods for sale :



and of commuters, constantly on the move, waiting for their next pick-up :



and, finally a nod to tea and coffee stalls.





An early sketch of the design:

final dimensions


The coffee table comes with a retractable handle, that can be used to easily move it around – much like a trolley suitcase:

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Stories from the street


Picture taken as part of ‘Stories from the street’ photo-series.

All things equal

This is a follow-up to the post Power, on reading which one of my ex-colleagues send in an email on how women in India are privileged and are beneficiaries of cognitive base of power.

Few of the points that he raised include:

  1. Equal education opportunities
  2. More legal rights in marriage
  3. Equal rights in inheritance
  4. No social stigma attached to unemployment
  5. Reservation system
  6. Benefits for girl child

Since the context of these questions is with respect to cognitive powers I will address them accordingly.

First off, I would like to reiterate that cognitive powers are region, culture and individual specific and hence need not always be gender specific. It could be something else entirely – perhaps an individual’s race, sexual orientation etc.

Let’s chalk out an rough age progression for genders (NOT limited to the Indian context):

Typically around the age of 3-4 is a child’s first introduction to formal education, and the first introduction to rules and regulations. This marks a starting point in dualistic treatment of girls (sweet) and boys (naughty). The duality is further reinforced in nursery rhymes and school texts and literature.

Georgie Porgie, pudding and pie,
Kissed the girls and made them cry;

Typically around the age of 9, the first signs of physical transformations like the development of breasts start to happen. This is perhaps the first instance when girls are initiated to the concepts of modesty, morality , politeness and necessity to cover up. Most cultures and families do not educate the girls on this expected body transformation, treating it rather as a taboo subject.

Typically around the age of 13, girls start menstruating. This subject is barely discussed openly without shame or stigma.In the Indian context, the stigma is even more.

Some articles on this here, here, here and here .

There should be no stigma attached to a perfectly normal bodily function.

Skip to 4:30 of the below video.


Typically by her early teens, girls would have likely had sexual things said to them by strange men. Men driving by, men in stores, men in malls and out in public. When such uncomfortable instances are shared with adults, the typical reaction is to “educate” the girls on taking a more defensive stance, ignoring perpetrators or worse still a limitation on her rights.

This is not limited to the Indian context.


Also in the teens, the duality in treatment of boys and girls is marked. While boys most likely are subject to cultural norms to assert their strength, independence, and masculinity. This is also toxic and harmful – the pressure to bottle up emotions, never to cry or be visibly upset.

The girls have a vastly different version to this – they will have felt pressure to raise their hands in class less, to talk back less, to play dumb more, to be a little less visible, to dress modestly, to ignore derogatory comments, to spend more time and attention on grooming and beauty.

Girls feel the need to play down their intelligence to not intimidate boys, concludes research by a sociologist who spent three months amongst a class of school children. Research conducted by Dr Maria do Mar Pereira from the University of Warwick’s Department of Sociology, found that boys aged 14 had acquired the belief that girls their age should be less intelligent. Read on this here .


uckerberg reply


As adults, women are questioned more as dependents and not individuals – during interviews, promotion opportunities and even during personal encounters. While men are pressurized to pursue meaningful careers, and growth and stability. The cultural focus for gentlemen is personal achievements at work and at home while women are pressured into pursuing more dependent roles.

Indian women are never taught how to be independent, and yet this isn’t discussed nearly enough. An article on this here .


Yes, woman are pushing to challenge the norms. Improved education, exposure and increased female workforce means that women are becoming more self aware too. In my opinion, this explains the below graph, when in their late 20’s women feel more powerful and confident with themselves:


Source article can be read here


In conclusion, to my ex-colleague who raised this point, I am glad that you facilitated this conversation.

Although, I’m tired of having to explain that these problems exist.

The most effective way to null the negative impact of cognitive bases of power, is to identify, confront and challenge them. The first step of which is to acknowledge that these biases exist.

All things are equal, yet they are not.

Sevaram Malli Parihar

Locals in the village of Khichan, started to feed Siberian demoiselle cranes, migrant birds, some years ago.

The birds remember and they keep coming every year and do no longer fly further south.

The estimate is that up to 20000 birds are fed every day in high season.

Here is the story of Mr. Sevaram, who has devoted his life for the protection of the cranes.

Birds on rooftops,. Siberian demoiselle cranes in Khichan.

Birds on rooftops. Siberian demoiselle cranes in Khichan.