How WhatsApp Is Changing Indian Politics

JENCY JACOB, MANAGING EDITOR, BOOM FACTCHECK, RECALLS THE DAY Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman sharply attacked the opposition in the Lok Sabha for calling Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “chor” (thief) over the Rafale fighter aircraft deal. Jacob and his colleagues at their fact-checking firm joked that a “clipped video” of Sitharaman would soon go … Continue reading How WhatsApp Is Changing Indian Politics

Advertisements

BJP Hopes Reservations to Economically Weaker Sections Will Help Retain Its Core Vote Base

SENIOR DELHI-BASED LAWYER Indra Sawhney is amused that her name has become part of India’s legal lore and that a case she fought decades ago keeps coming up whenever there is any talk of affirmative action. “So long as there is a reservation system in the country, I am sure my name will keep surfacing,” … Continue reading BJP Hopes Reservations to Economically Weaker Sections Will Help Retain Its Core Vote Base

Nayanjot Lahiri: The Time Keeper

FOR THE SERIOUS academic historian that she is, Nayanjot Lahiri, author of works as stellar as Ashoka in Ancient India and Finding Forgotten Cities: How the Indus Civilization was Discovered, has reason to contend, perhaps with a slight sense of guilt, that her latest work is a “light-hearted” one. Or perhaps more than guilt, it could be her … Continue reading Nayanjot Lahiri: The Time Keeper

The Quest for Immortality and the War on Death

LENNY ABRAMOV, A CHARACTER from novelist Gary Shteyngart’s Super Sad True Love Story, declares in his diary that he is never going to die. Why? Because he thinks the technology for it is almost here. ‘As the Life Lovers Outreach Coordinator (Grade G) of the Post-Human Services division of the Saatling-Wapachung Corporation, I will be the … Continue reading The Quest for Immortality and the War on Death

Why Restrictions on E-Cigarettes Won’t Help

IN THE MOVIE Tourist, Johnny Depp, who plays Frank Tupelo, an American in Venice who lands in mysterious circumstances after meeting a fascinating woman (Angelina Jolie), puffs on a vaporised cigarette, also called electronic or non-combustible cigarette, that is said to be 95 per cent less harmful than its burning counterpart. The 2010 thriller perhaps had … Continue reading Why Restrictions on E-Cigarettes Won’t Help

India’s Institutions Are Crumbling Due to Excessive Political and Corporate Meddling

INSTITUTIONS OR THOSE at the helm of prestigious government agencies going rogue has time and again put the Narendra Modi Government in a bad spot. A number of judges of the Supreme Court of India rising in revolt against the Chief Justice and hogging news headlines was an unprecedented event in the history of Indian … Continue reading India’s Institutions Are Crumbling Due to Excessive Political and Corporate Meddling

Shivraj Singh Chouhan Faces His Toughest Election Yet

IN THE BASEMENT of a residential building in Bhopal, the capital of Madhya Pradesh, a heavyset, middle-aged man is seated in a chair, watchful and slightly tense. He is multi-tasking as his team of 70-odd volunteers clicks away at computers, creating content and editing videos. They send slogans, promos and other material to the BJP … Continue reading Shivraj Singh Chouhan Faces His Toughest Election Yet

Air Quality in North India Divides the Rich and Poor More Than Ever

AT DYSON’S TRENDY showroom in Delhi’s DLF Promenade mall in Vasant Kunj, sales of the British company’s air purifiers have shot up in the past month as people from various parts of the National Capital Region and elsewhere, alarmed by the rise in pollution levels and chances of related long-term health hazards, especially for their … Continue reading Air Quality in North India Divides the Rich and Poor More Than Ever