Homage To A Birdman, The Telegraph [Saturday, May 2nd, 2015]

The Urdu word ‘shareef’ has many meanings. An online dictionary offers ‘noble’, ‘gentlemanly’, and ‘civilized’, to which one can add: ‘refined; courteous; honourable; civil; civilized’. Among the most shareef men I knew was the conservationist Zafar Futehally. Raised and educated in Bombay, Futehally’s early interest in birds was furthered when he married Laeeq, niece of [...]

 
 
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  A STORY OF DASGUPTAS, The Telegraph [Saturday, October 27th, 2007]

On my last trip to Kolkata, I had what can only be described as a uniquely bhadralok experience: I bought a book by a Dasgupta about another Dasgupta, which was sold to me by a third Dasgupta, after he had been guided by a fourth Dasgupta. To explain how this came about, I need to [...]

 
 
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  THE BIRD MEN OF INDIA, The Hindu [Sunday, October 26th, 2003]

My old home town, Dehra Dun, occupies a special place in the history of Indian ornithology. It was here that Salim Ali spent five years with his wife, Tehmina. While living in Dehra Dun he revised and refined his first and most famous work, The Book of Indian Birds. The Valley has a dazzlingly diverse [...]

 
 
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