Sandip Roy's Dispatches from Kolkata

Series produced by KALW

Caption: Sandip at the Grand Hotel in Nainital.
Sandip at the Grand Hotel in Nainital. 

Award winning writer, radio host, NPR contributor and novelist Sandip Roy brings his wit and insight to these personal audio diaries from his new life in his old home, India.

After ten years of hosting New America Now, Sandip Roy brings you a little bit of the story of the new India every week – a letter home from his other home.

"A lot has been written about the changing India," says Roy, "but reporting about a changing India is one thing. Living in it and dealing with a country where newspapers are still being launched instead of folding, internet rumors spark mass exoduses, and cricketers advertise skin-whitening creams called Fair and Handsome, that is another thing altogether."


252 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
Piece image
In an India bristling with news about beef raids, vegetarian only housing societies and animal slaughter bans, being vegetarian has started soundin...

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio


  • Added: Nov 03, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Old Monk Rum
The Old Monk is dying!? Not that kind of monk, it’s a rum. Not just A rum. The iconic Indian rum. A rite of passage for Indians for the last 6 de...

  • Added: Oct 26, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
Caption: Mohamad Akhlaq
After it was posted on WhatsApp that Aklhaq Mohmamad's family was eating beef a mob beat and stoned him to death. But what was the mob being fed?

  • Added: Oct 06, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
Piece image
When Narendra Modi came by last week to the Bay Area the titans of tech pulled out all stops to give him a red carpet welcome. Amidst all this jub...

  • Added: Sep 30, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
Caption: Ahmed Muhamed
Mahesh Sharma, India’s Culture minister, and a high school in Irving, Texas have more in common than they realize.

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Sep 22, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
Sandip Roy never learned how to fly a kite, and he regrets it every September.

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Sep 15, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Aylan and Galib Kurdi
We are inundated by a circus of gratuitous and salacious images in our media everyday, but one recent photograph has cut through the clutter.

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Sep 08, 2015
  • Length: 05:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
When Hardik Patel got 600,000 people to show up at a rally in Ahmedabadn in his native Gujarat everyone sat up and noticed. But his reservation mo...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Sep 01, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Jimmy Carter
The secrecy around an illness can become the great taboo. What Jimmy Carter did by going public was break that taboo and face the disease squarely....

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Aug 25, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
An iconic Indian "Bollywood" film reminds Sandip Roy that a solid relationship can transcend the oceanic gap of language.

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Aug 18, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
A beloved Old Monk is dying in India. Not that kind of monk, it’s a rum. Not just A rum. The iconic Indian rum. A rite of passage for Indians for t...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Aug 04, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Shashi Tharoor
It’s not a kitten video or an on-air blooper or a wardrobe malfunction. Who would have thought a 15 minute debating society speech could go viral? ...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Jul 28, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Naveed Mahbub
What do immigrants carry with them to America? The obvious reminders of home -- Spices. Pressure cookers. Pickles. What’s far more unpredictable i...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Jul 20, 2015
  • Length: 05:58
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Rare Mangoes at a festival, Credit: Sandip Roy
What we call mango in English has a hundred different names in India. Indians don’t love their mangos. They form fanatical fan clubs of different k...

Bought by WDBM, KMRE-LP, and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jul 07, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: The White House lit up in a rainbow, Credit: USA Today
After the historic ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court on gay marriage, Sandip Roy reflects on... his Facebook feed.

Bought by KMRE-LP and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jun 29, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 2
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In India the Supreme Court did not realize that when it recriminalized gay sex, society had come a long way. Like toothpaste it just cannot be pus...

Bought by KMRE-LP and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jun 23, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Satyajit Ray
It might take a village to raise a child. But it took three continents to raise one little village in Bengal from its ashes.

Bought by KMRE-LP and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jun 16, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 2
Piece image
India has tied itself in knots thanks to a noodle problem. The country has been in an uproar since tests alleged that some packets of Maggi instan...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Jun 09, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Piece image
When I moved to Calcutta from San Francisco, I’d often marvel, that for a city of 4 and half million, everyone seems to know everyone. But writer...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: Jun 02, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Modi rally
I was reporting on India’s 2014 general election which would bring Narendra Modi to power a year ago. Sultan, though that’s not his real name, was...

Bought by KMRE-LP


  • Added: May 26, 2015
  • Length: 06:00
  • Purchases: 1