News Activists carry posters as they shout slogans during a protest march against the gangrape and murder of a teenager, in India. The Indian politician has apologised after she said women invite rape.

She came under criticism from members of her own party who distanced themselves from her remarks

Chowringhee, By Sankar trans. Arunava Sinha

Near the end of Chowringhee, we hear a yarn from the old-timer Hobbs. This grizzled veteran of the Raj has memories of a Calcutta grand hotel, the Shahjahan - the story-stuffed centre of this banquet of a novel - that stretch back to "the eighth decade of the 19th century". Now, staying on in India after Independence, Hobbs remembers the career of an equally venerable bar manager, Sohrabji. This poor Parsi restored his fortunes by running raucous Calcutta drinking-dens. Hookers, soldiers and businessmen filled his pockets while he, sober and dutiful, would dream of his clever daughter's radiant future as a great professor. One day she turns up in the money-spinning dive and discovers, with horror, the tainted source of their respectable family life. Sohrabji's world collapses, while Hobbs's belief that "every brick in this hotel has a novel in it" is vindicated yet again.

Flood and Worsley fit to play

England injury doubts Toby Flood and Joe Worsley have both been passed fit to start against Scotland tomorrow.

Darjeeling – does the champagne of brews really need a new name?

Tea estates face shutdown unless they brand packaging as 'flavour of Gorkhaland'

Charm offensive: Why India’s snake men (and their serpents) are taking to the streets

A 1,000-year-old tradition is at risk as police start to take the law seriously and animal welfare activists want the music to stop. Andrew Buncombe reports from Delhi

Editor arrested for 'outraging Muslims'

Protests against Indian newspaper over article reprinted from <i>Independent</i>

Best for colonial splendour: Calcutta

From high-level trekking in Morocco's Atlas Mountains to rubbing shoulders with A-listers on Hollywood Boulevard, and from rural retreats off Tuscany's beaten track to jet-set hang outs for Moscow's super-rich, our writers have been to the ends of the earth to find a world of inspiration

Indian police arrest two men in Mumbai investigation

Indian police arrested two men accused of providing mobile phone cards to the gunmen in the Mumbai attacks, the first known arrests in the probe since the siege ended, police said today.

Parents pleaded with Indian media for help finding killer

Amid the heat and humidity of the monsoon season, Hannah Foster's parents sat in a packed room at the Press Club in Delhi and pleaded with the Indian media to help track down their daughter's killer.

<a href="http://blogs.independent.co.uk/independent/asian_confusion/index.html" target="_blank">Asian (con)Fusion: Bihar - the battle for survival</a>

Those who survived the floods in Bihar are now involved in a desperate batttle for survival

Tata halts world's cheapest car production after land protests

Violent clashes erupted in West Bengal today after India's top motor manufacturer announced it had ceased production of its revolutionary new 'Nano' car.

2,000 feared dead as floods swamp hundreds of Indian villages

Up to 2,000 people are feared dead after a river changed course, flooding hundreds of villages in the Indian state of Bihar. Stranded villagers were surviving on uncooked rice mixed with dirty water, as authorities struggled to deliver aid to the displaced millions after the worst floods to hit the eastern state in 50 years.

Indian villagers desperate as floods spread

It is a landscape of despair. The carcasses of dead animals lie adrift in the flood water, rotting and stinking. Entire villages in one of India’s poorest states have been washed away and millions of people have been forced from their homes by the worst flooding in the region for 50 years.

Thousands of tourists hit by Darjeeling unrest

Tens of thousands of tourists were left stranded in India's main tea-growing region yesterday as ethnic Gurkhas demanding their own state announced an indefinite general strike and closed down the entire area.

Picture Post: A cut above - Sony Photography Awards

In the digital age of mega-pixels and photo-editing software, it's reassuring to discover that a photographic genius can be discovered in anyone.

Picture Post: Cat overboard &ndash; West Bengal, 19.02.08

It is one of the deadliest creatures on the planet, capable of crunching through limbs with a single bite of its vice-like jaw, but look closely at the face of this majestic – and pregnant – royal Bengal tiger and it appears to be displaying not a deadly gnashing of its glistening teeth, but a triumphant smile.

Sport
Andy Murray reaches the final of the Australian Open after beating Tomas Berdych in another impressive display, but the match was marred by ill feeling
sport
News
people
News
The guide, since withdrawn, used illustrations and text to help people understand the court process (Getty)
newsMinistry of Justice gets law 'terribly wrong' in its guide to courts
News
Bobbi Kristina Brown with her mother Whitney Houston in 2011
people
News
Starting the day with a three-egg omelette could make people more charitable, according to new research
science
News
Top Gun actor Val Kilmer lost his small claims court battle in Van Nuys with the landlord of his Malibu mansion to get back his deposit after wallpapering over the kitchen cabinets
people
News
Comedian Ted Robbins collapsed on stage during a performance of Phoenix Nights Live at Manchester Arena (Rex)
people
News
The actress Geraldine McEwan was perhaps best known for playing Agatha Christie's detective, Miss Marple (Rex)
peopleShe won a Bafta in 1991 for her role in Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit
News
newsPatrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
News
Robert Fraser, aka Groovy Bob
peopleA new show honours Robert Fraser, one of the era's forgotten players
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 30 January 2015
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links