Myths about High Petrol and Diesel Prices

There have been a lot of explanations going around on WhatsApp, trying to justify the high petrol and diesel prices in India. Hence, I had to write this piece, although, my original plan was something else. So, without wasting any time, let’s get into it.

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India’s Youth Unemployment Data Shows Exponential Growth

Unemployment has become a major problem in India. And in the past decade, it has seen a sharp increase. This is something that all of us can see around us. A few weeks back, around 35,000 posts for Indian Railways attracted 1.25 crore applications. This alone shows the desperation among youth for employment.

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Amrit Kaal, or is it? My Take on Budget This Year

It has been some days since the finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the Union Budget for 2022-23. There was some hope that considering the upcoming elections there would be massive giveaways and the creation of narratives. Although, narratives were created, but not through giveaways. The budget remained quite “Thanda”, in the words of Vivek Kaul, or very “non-populistic”, in the words of Swaminathan Aiyar.

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Why Exit Polls Go Wrong?

It is 2022 and the election season is around in India. In the next few months, we are going to have State Legislative Elections in five states. This includes elections in politically the most important state in India: Uttar Pradesh, and the heart of the Farmers’ protest: Punjab. But, before the results will be announced, we will see a lot of news channels conducting exit polls in these states to show you the probable winners.

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The Best (and the Worst) of 2021

Another year has come to an end. We saw a lot of ups and downs in 2021. It started with the inauguration of the forty-sixth US President Joe Biden, replacing Donald Trump, which was followed by a disastrous and horrifying second-wave of covid-19 in India where nearly everyone lost some of their kins. After that, Neeraj Chopra made India proud by winning gold at Tokyo Olympics, and the year ended with India becoming the first Asian nation to win a test match at Centurion, as they registered a 113-run victory over South Africa. These are just some of the moments of 2021. There were many moments that defined the year. Here’s my list of the best (and the worst) of 2021.

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Gandhi, and Group Polarisation

Kangana Ranaut’s statement has once again created a controversy. In an interview, she said that India got its real independence in 2014. “…what we got [in 1947] was not Independence but alms.”
Statements like these by a national awardee are a disgrace to our society. And it also teaches us a couple of things. But first, let’s talk about some statistics.

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The Stumbling Market

BSE Sensex, one of India’s prime stock market indexes fell nearly 2.5% this week, the worst weekly showings in the last eight months. This was because of concerns relating to RBI ending its easy money policy. Let’s first take a look at what has happened till now.

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The History of Mail-Order Houses and its Relevance Today

But when the Montgomery, Ward & Co. started its business, the Chicago Tribune reported, ‘Beware! Don’t Patronize “Montgomery, Ward & Co.” They Are Dead-Beats’. The Tribune was convinced that the business was fraud owing to the fact that they offered ‘Utopian’ prices on a huge range of products, and that they do not have a proper shop and employed no agents. Before coming to how the Tribune took a U-turn very soon, let’s first understand what Mail-Order Businesses are.

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What Can We Expect Out Of India’s Economy?

he recently published figure of India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) shows that it increased by 20.1% in the first quarter of year 2021-22. While the percentage figure looks splendid, it was because of the base-effect. The percentage rise in the GDP was as compared to the GDP of First quarter of year 2020-21. This was the time when India implemented a stringent lockdown because of the covid outbreak, which resulted in a massive 23.9% of contraction in India’s GDP. So the real way of looking at this number is that India’s GDP during this period is lower that what it was in April-June 2018.

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Fighting Hate Speech and The Grey Area

On 8th August 2021, at a rally in Jantar Mantar, inflammatory slogans calling for violence against Muslims were raised. Two days later, Bhartiya Janta Party leader Ashwini Upadhyay and five others were arrested. According to a report in Scroll, they have been charged with promoting religious enmity and breaking the Covid-19 protocol. But more than […]

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Of WhatsApp, Group Polarization, and Fake News

Last year, during the time of Delhi election, a message claiming that Arvind Kejriwal was accused of rape and was arrested in 1987 came in my family WhatsApp group. Well, it took me a single google search (nearly about 5 seconds) to find out that it was fake. Even when it was so easy to find out the truth, the fact is that someone shared it in our group and someone else in our group must have forwarded it to some other group. And that is how the instant messaging service has become one of the largest propagators of fake news. But how does it happen? What is the reason people believe in fake news?

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Why The Pegasus Project is a Much Bigger Issue than It Seems

Recently, Amnesty International, a human rights organization came up with a database of 50,000 phone numbers which were either infected or were potential targets of a spyware called Pegasus. NSO Group, an Israeli company, has made this spyware. It sells it only to governments and official agencies for security purposes, which is why this issue has become a lot more controversial. Various governments including India’s have been suspected to keep an eye on its citizens, especially the dissenters, using this dangerous weapon.

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We Don’t Need a Population Control Bill

One of the most heated topics of last week was THE UTTAR PRADESH POPULATION (CONTROL, STABILIZATION AND WELFARE) BILL, 2021. I think, it has become a tradition from the last few years to draft at least one controversial bill every year. And this is the latest entry to that list. There are many myths about the population in india which needs to be busted. Also, as we will see later, this bill has nothing to do with the real issues as is claimed, but is purely a political gimmick. So let’s start.

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When a Renowned Media Organisation Got It All Wrong

While scrolling through my google news feed, I came across this news article titled ‘Why govt is not cutting petrol, diesel prices; Rs 1.3 lakh cr oil bond repayments due for cheap fuel in past’ in the website of Financial Express, one of India’s leading business media entity. Being such a large and renowned media organization, I didn’t hope they would write this article. It is basically a report on how the increasing tax on petrol and diesel is because of the oil bonds issued by previous governments which we have to pay now. This, as we shall see later, is totally wrong and belongs more to whatsapp university instead of Financial Express.

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A Break that Lasted Too Long

Hello everyone, how are you all? It has been four weeks since I wrote my last blog. And I didn’t forget about it. I had actually taken a break from a few things and was trying to achieve mental minimalism for quite some time. This was because I felt I was being much too overloaded all this time. It is the first time I felt like that, and the first time I started thinking about mental health.

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Society is The Court of Ethics and Morals

Central Vista Redevelopment project has been surrounded by controversies ever since it was announced. Going with such a large project when the average economic growth of the country declined for the fourth consecutive year in FY 2019-20, that is, the pre-pandemic year, seemed irresponsible. As we entered the pandemic, we not only saw one of the biggest economic contractions in the post-independence history, but also the Indian healthcare system collapsing miserably. The floating dead bodies on the banks of river Ganga are an open testimony to that. Personally, I know dozens of people who have lost their lives in this pandemic. But, even this didn’t prevent the current dispensation from continuing the massive project, or as the critics call it “Modi Mahal”.

Read More Society is The Court of Ethics and Morals