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About Us

We are a group of individuals with an interest in South Asia. We wish to explore the past to explain the present and to speculate about the futures that are possible. Only one future will become the past and it will depend on what we do in the present.


Samia Altaf was the 2007-2008 Pakistan Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC. She has worked for UNICEF, USAID, the District of Columbia’s Department of Health and taught at the Aga Khan Medical University in Karachi, Pakistan. Her book So Much Aid, So Little Development: Stories from Pakistan has been published by the Johns Hopkins University Press in May 2011.

Dipankar Gupta was Professor of Sociology, Center for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. From September to December 2007, he was a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC.

Ahmed Kamran was an active member of the previous student movement for political and social change in Pakistan.

Bettina Robotka is a historian and a Senior Researcher at the Seminar of South Asian History and Society, Humboldt University, Berlin.

Shreekant Gupta is visiting the National University of Singapore on leave from the University of Delhi.

Aakar Patel is a former newspaper editor who lives in Bombay.

Anil Kala: Who am I? When I find out, I will tell you.

South Asian is the quintessential South Asian. In the words of Bulleh Shah (1680-1758):

Na mein Arbi, na Lahori
Na mein Hindi shehar Nagauri
Na Hindu, na Turk Pishauri
Na mein rehnda vich Nadaun
Bullehya, ki jaanan mein kaun

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