Lipi has a ritual she follows every morning. She turns on her computer at work and reads the websites of the Times of India, the Assam Tribune, the Hindu. She does this before she logs on to more local papers like the Star-Ledger or the New York Times, before she reads of what's going on in her own backyard. Somehow it just feels right to start the day off reading of her former home.
Lipi's upbringing as the daughter of a mining engineer for India's Oil and Natural Gas Corporation took her all over India. Her education took place in dozens of central government schools, known as India's “great equalizer” for their ability to bring together children of different regions, religions, castes, and economic backgrounds to study. But even at an early age, Lipi was struck by how some parts of Indian society moved full speed ahead while others hindered progress. When she was seven years old, her family lived in Silchar, an area of Assam dominated by Bengalis, in a subsidized housing complex for government em-