Equality, Reservation, and Democracy

Imtiaz Ahmad

A second class, two-tier air-conditioned compartment on any super fast train of the Indian railways is an excellent window to the country. I happened to be travelling recently in such a compartment to Ahmedabad. I had the lower berth. A junior executive on a sales promotion was occupying the berth above me. Opposite me the two seats were occupied by a businessman and his wife. The side berths were taken by an architecture student and an elderly man recently retired from service.

It often happens during such journeys that each passenger tries to maintain an extreme degree of privacy and distance, looking at other passengers from the corners of their eyes but pretending that they are least ...

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