The authorities in India’s Bihar state have advanced the alcohol ban deadline by six months to Tuesday this week, claiming that now was “the right time for social change in Bihar”. Photograph: David Jones/PA Wire

The authorities in India’s eastern Bihar state have imposed prohibition in a move aimed at “cleansing” society and ridding it of a “social evil”. Chi(...)

Fishermen in rural Assam where witch-hunting is prevalent, not only among the state’s largely superstitious and underdeveloped tribal communities and its tea plantation workers, but also in several other regions. Photograph: Biju Boro/AFP/Getty

Police arrested 16 people in India’s northeastern Assam state last month for brutally murdering a 63-year old woman for practicising witchcraft, in wh(...)

During the 1980s any man caught drinking by the tough female brigades would be stripped, tied on top of a donkey and paraded through the streets with a blackened face. Photograph: Getty Images

The successful Manipuri women’s temperance movement, which secured the imposition of prohibition in its home state in northeastern India nearly a quar(...)

Indian devotees gather after a stampede at a religious festival in Godavari in the Rajahmundry district. The toll from a stampede on Tuesday has  risen to 27. Photograph: Getty

At least 27 people have been killed and dozens of others injured in a stampede during a Hindu religious bathing festival in southern India. It happen(...)

Men sleep on a temporary shade built over a drain next to a slum during a heatwave in New Delhi, India, May 28th, 2015. Photograph: Reuters/Anindito Mukherjee

The death toll in a weeks-long heatwave in India has now risen to at least 1,826. Meteorological officials called the hot weather “severe” and warned (...)

An Indian man washes his face at a roadside tap during rising temperatures in New Delhi. Photograph: Sajjad Hussain/AFP/Getty Images

Eating onions, lying in the shade and crowding into rivers, Indians are doing whatever they can to stay cool amid a brutal heatwave that has killed mo(...)

Children sit on fishing boats by the shore before being evacuated at Visakhapatnam district in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Photograph: R Narendra/Reuters

Heavy rain and gusts have ripped through a large swathe of India’s eastern seaboard, uprooting trees and snapping power cables as a powerful cyclone s(...)

A  member of India’s parliament covers his face with a handkerchief after being affected by pepper spray gas fired by another legislator. Photograph: AP

India’s parliament erupted in mayhem on Thursday when a legislator fired pepper spray in the lower house in protest against a bill on a new sta(...)

Gulabi Gang members from the village of Rauli Kayanpur dressed in their pink sari uniform. Photograph: Carol Ryan

Bundelkhand is a brutally poor region in the north of India that has a reputation as a place where people still die of hunger. Every morning villag(...)

The bus was travelling in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Image: Google Maps

At least 38 people died after the fuel tank of the bus they were traveling in exploded in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, an official sai(...)