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India 2022



Located in India’s largely desert state of Rajasthan, rural Madla village is a verdant oasis of farmland tended by hardworking families and their livestock. Village life radiates from the community hall, the shared water pump, and the primary school.
Interacting with foreigners was a completely new experience for these schoolchildren, but their initial cautious silence was eventually broken, first by tentative smiles and then by shared laughter, as they took delight in the opportunity to show off their knowledge.

Joy Patman © 2008
PCV Fiji 1988–1990, Ecuador 1991
Education, Natural Resources

Republic of India
Southern Asia

Area 1.3M mi2; 3.3M km2

Arable 53%

Population 1.3B (1000/mi²; 394/km²)

Gov’t Federal parliamentary republic

Capital New Delhi (30.2M)

GCP/Capita $6,700

Unemployment 9%

In Poverty 22%

Infant Mortality 40/1K live births (40th)

Life expectancy 70 yrs

Children Aged <15 Yrs 27% of pop

Median Age 29 yrs

Literacy 74%

Languages Hindi, English, Bengali, Marathi, Telugu, Tamil, Gujarati, Urdu (among 22 official languages)

Religions Hindu 80%, Muslim 14%, Christian 2%, Sikh 2%, other 2%

Health 4% of GDP

Education 4% of GDP (1044th)

Military 2% of GDP (47th)

Labor Force Agriculture 47%, industry 22%, services 31%

PCVs 1961–1976 CURRENT: 0  TTD: 4,308

Adult Books

Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity
By Katherine Boo

Genre: Narrative nonfiction
Publisher: Random House (First edition: 2012)
ISBN: 978-1400067558 (hardback); 1400067553 (hardback); 978-0812994186 (paperback); 9780812979329 (paperback)

This award-winning book vividly introduces readers to a community whose daily life gives human shape to a bewildering age of global change and inequality, telling the dramatic story of families striving for a better life in Annawadi, a makeshift settlement in the shadow of luxury hotels near the Mumbai airport.

As India starts to prosper in the early years of the century, the Annawadi’s begin conceiving of a hopeful future for themselves. Abdul, an enterprising teenager, sees "a fortune beyond counting" to be made by recycling garbage. Ambitious Asha sets her sights on the chance her beautiful daughter, known as Annawadi's "most-everything girl," will become its first female college graduate. Even the poorest children have started to believe their dreams might one day come true. Then Abdul is falsely accused of shocking crime; terror and global recession rock the city; and tensions over religion, caste, money, sex, and power, rise to the surface.

The product of years of uncompromising, insightful reporting, Behind the Beautiful Forevers, presents an overlooked, largely hidden world inhabited by unforgettable characters.

“A tour de force of social justice reportage and a literary masterpiece.” (Judges, PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award)

Winner of: The PEN Nonfiction Award, The National Book Award, The Los Angeles Book Prize, The American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, The New York Public Library's Helen Bernstein Book Award.

Kids' Books

Gift for Amma: Market Day in India
By Meera Sriram; illustrated by Mariona Cabassa

Format: unpaged; color illustrations
ISBN: 978-1-58536-528-9
Age Range: 4-8 years
Publisher: Publisher: Cambridge, MA: Barefoot Books, 2020

A young girl shops in a southern Indian street market looking for a gift for her mother. But there are so many things to choose from!


Film: Gully Boy
Director: Zoya Akhtar
Country: India
Release Date: 14 February 2019 (USA)
Filming Locations: Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Language: Hindi, English
Run Time: 154 minutes
Sound Mix: Dolby Atmos
Color: Color

Gully Boy is a film about a 22-year-old boy “Murad” from a ghetto in Mumbai, India. The son of a driver, his parents worked hard to get him educated so that he could have a white-collar job. Meanwhile, Murad realizes his calling to be a rapper. Authentic Hip Hop in India is a recent phenomenon and like anywhere else in the world, is rising from the streets. Art is a distant dream for the colonized poor of India and this story is about Murad's journey from realizing his love for rap and chasing his dream to inadvertently transcending his class. The film showcases street rap from the crevices of Mumbai's by lanes. The poetry is conscious of the city's socio-economic fabric and highlights the challenges faced by the disenfranchised youth in the minority population.


Lata Mangeshkar

Lata Mangeshkar born Hema Mangeshkar, (28 September 1929) is an Indian playback singer and music director. She is one of the best-known and most respected playback singers in India. She has recorded songs in over a thousand Hindi films and has sung songs in over 36 regional Indian languages and foreign languages, though primarily in Marathi, Hindi, and Bengali.

The Dadasaheb Phalke Award was bestowed on her in 1989 by the Government of India. In 2001, in recognition of her contributions to the nation, she was awarded the Bharat Ratna, India's highest civilian honour—only the second vocalist, after M. S. Subbulakshmi, to receive this honour.

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