Tom Vater

Tom Vater

Irreverent, informed and downright eclectic crime fiction and reportage from Southeast Asia and beyond

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Posts tagged India

India’s City of Joy: 3 days in historic Kolkata at CNN

My latest travel feature with Laure Siegel on one of my favorite cities – Kolkata – for CNN Travel Mother Teresa did the same for this spendid city as Spielberg did for sharks. She ruined the West Bengal capital’s reputation for generations. But Teresa is dead, the city is on a bumpy rebound and its […]

Hidden India: Odisha’s secrets revealed on CNN

The eastern India state of Odisha, stretching for more than 300 miles along the Bay of Bengal, bristles with architectural and cultural gems. Tropical, remote and home to some of the subcontinent’s most striking temples, much of the state was off-limits to foreign travel for some years because of Maoist unrest but reopened in 2016. […]

PsycheDelhi – As Mad House as Art House

A few words om the excellent art house movie PsycheDelhi by Surya Dash.   If Godard and Tarkovsky had conceived an illegitimate child, with an anarchist bohemian Brahmin capturing the surrealist copulation on camera round the back of a chowk in the Indian capital, the offspring might look something like PsycheDelhi. Delhi is usually perceived […]

The Travels of Marco Yolo: Blazing Trails where Marco Polo Feared to Go

  My friend Marco Ferrarese has published his latest and very very cool travel anthology, The Travels of Marco Yolo: Blazing Trails where Marco Polo Feared to Go.   It’s a great read that jumps all over Asia and the Middle East, including some pretty obscure and remote corners, proving that good travel writing survives […]

Rise Tattoo goes to India

                                                    The brand new edition(#46) of Rise Tattoo, available at all good newsagents in France at present, features 16 pages on India by Laure Siegel and myself. We look at […]

When tattoo culture meets politics – Tamil Nadu – Nikkei Asian Review

Usually a matter of choice, Indian state takes political tattoos to new level. Check out my new feature, with Laure Siegel, on one of India’s enduring personality cults. For decades, the followers of six times state minister and recently deceased Jayalalithaa Jayaram, have been wearing their political idol’s face on their skins, acquired in mass […]

Odisha – The Land That Time Forgot in The Nikkei Asian Review

My latest story with French journalist Laure Siegel on Odisha, one of India’s least visited states, and its fledgling tourist industry, published in the Nikkei Asian Review. PURI, India — “Jay Jagannath! Jay Jagannath!” A sea of people chants the sacred mantra while pulling on thick ropes hauling three massive, 14-meter-high wooden carts decorated in […]

Indian theater activists see rise in political risks – The Nikkei Asian Review

My latest story with Laure Siegel on government censorship and the arts in India, focusing on theater on Mumbai and Delhi. MUMBAI/NEW DELHI — “First they come for the movies. Then for the books. Theater will be the last to be hit, but the clamp-down is coming,” said Anish Victor, a founder of Rafiki, a […]

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