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Opinion

Opinion

Navigating lay-offs

After lay-off, never stop learning — it’s a great time to learn and stay up to date. | Photo Credit: Getty Images Lay-offs and tough job markets can be difficult for professionals to cope with, especially in the tech industry. The tech industry is fast-paced and constantly evolving, which can make it difficult for professionals to stay on top of the latest in their work area. Unfortunately, as we are currently in the middle of an economic downturn and companies are facing financial challenges, lay-offs are inevitable. Experts are predicting that 2023 will witness a market correction and consolidation as opposed to the great resignation when there were abundant jobs in the market. If you are a tech professional who has recently been laid off or is struggling to find work, there are a fe...
Opinion

Toys of our nation

Traditional crafts such as Etikoppaka and Kondapalli toys can offer many simple pleasures. | Photo Credit: V. RAJU Does your toddler or little munchkin have any traditional Indian toy as part of his or her collection? Has she or he cheered on the whirling of a lattu (spinning top) or laughed at the head-bobbing Thanjavur doll? Does your child enjoy bringing down fruit from orchard trees like you did with the gulel (catapult)? I think most of us can agree that the new generation rarely enjoys simple pleasures like we did in our childhood. Pallankuzhi, Natungram wooden dolls, Kondapalli toys, Channapatna toys, chaturanga, pachisi, bhatukali, bagh chal and kathputli are some of the traditional toys and games that are on the verge of extinction due to waning interest in them. Students havi...
Opinion

Travelling the world with books

Books always provide solace and comfort in the best and worst of times.  | Photo Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto In a bid to get back to reading when the first COVID-lockdown was imposed almost three years ago, I participated in an online exchange of books with complete strangers. Over the course of a month, I ended up receiving more than a dozen books from all parts of India, but the most fascinating was an English translation of a thriller by Japanese writer Keigo Higashino. Starting it with a lot of trepidation, I soon found myself completely absorbed in the Japanese culture, the Tokyo bento boxes, and the lovely culture of bicycles in Japan. This book, The Devotion of Suspect X, turned out to be the first on a long list of international books that I would go on to devour. Like mos...
Opinion

India’s groundwater governance is in better shape

‘As one of the fastest growing economies, India will need adequate groundwater resources to manage anthropogenic pressures’ | Photo Credit: Getty Images Data show that India, with nearly 18% of the world’s population, occupies about 2.4% of the total geographical area and consumes 4% of total water resources. A World Bank report says that India is the largest groundwater user. A rapidly growing economy and population are straining the country’s groundwater resources. As a vast country, India has distinct and varying hydro-geological settings. Groundwater is the backbone of India’s agriculture and drinking water security in rural and urban areas, meeting nearly 80% of the country’s drinking water and two-thirds of its irrigation needs. Groundwater is pivotal to India’s water securit...
Opinion

Great expectations: The Hindu Editorial on Nirmala Sitharaman’s pre-poll budget

In the week ahead, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present her fifth and this government’s last full-fledged Budget before the Lok Sabha election in 2024. Although some electoral overtures can be made in an interim Budget next year, the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government will also be mindful of the flurry of State elections scheduled through 2023. Ms. Sitharaman has an unenviable task of balancing the pulls and pressures on fiscal resources amid multiple congregating headwinds, keeping one eye on creating a feel-good factor among voters and the other on demonstrating suitable resolve to address India’s twin deficit situation and steer growth. Buoyant tax revenues this year provide comfort on meeting the fiscal deficit target (6.4% of GDP). The Finance Minister will need to s...
Opinion

Founding ideals: The Hindu Editorial on President Murmu’s first Republic Day address to the nation

In her first and customary Republic Day address to the nation, President Draupadi Murmu reiterated the founding ideals of the Republic on the eve of the 74th anniversary of the adoption of its Constitution. As the first tribal woman to occupy the highest office in the country, the 15th President of India is emblematic of the Republic’s continuing journey of democracy, pluralism and empowerment of the weaker sections. The values of fraternity and democracy that its founding leaders etched into the genetic makeup of the modern nation were derived from the learnings of an ancient civilisation. Ms. Murmu underscored this quality of the Republic — the amalgamation of the old and the new, the traditional and the modern. A unified and unifying struggle against British imperialism, as the Presi...
Opinion

The moral and intellectual crises in economic policies

A textile loom in Malegaon, Maharashtra | Photo Credit: PRASHANT NAKWE News from Davos and Delhi in the third week of January has framed the moral and intellectual crises affecting Indian economic policies. In the first instance, speaking at a session at the World Economic Forum in Davos on India’s road to a $10 trillion economy, the Chairman of Tata Sons said, “For me, the three things most important are growth, growth, and growth.” In the second instance, a report from Delhi said that 150 homeless people had been removed from beneath a flyover by police who had been directed to clear the city of beggars ahead of various G-20 events to be held in the city. The “beggars” who included many workers like Munna employed by establishments in the vicinity were being taken to a shelter far aw...
Opinion

These golden girls | Jennifer Coolidge and Jamie Lee Curtis are acknowledgement of the shining moment that older women are having

Jennifer Coolidge poses with her award for best supporting actress for The White Lotus at the 80th Annual Golden Globe Awards | Photo Credit: Reuters Earlier this month, when 61-year old actress Jennifer Coolidge won the Golden Globe award for her role as the ditzy, rich Tanya in The White Lotus, not only was it a testament to her talent and her newfound (previously niche) popularity, it was also an acknowledgement of this golden moment that older women are finally having. Coolidge has been the toast of this season, walking breathlessly up the stage, dressed in a glittering dress that is not expected to squeeze out an hourglass figure. And then she drops some truth bombs. About ageing, about being forgotten, about clinging on and not giving up when dreams don’t come true, when life doe...
Opinion

Portentous overkill: The Hindu Editorial on the blocking access to and arrests over BBC documentary on PM Modi

The aftermath of the release of a BBC documentary on the Gujarat pogrom of 2002, which questions the actions taken by the then Gujarat government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, can only be termed as yet another rendition of the ‘Streisand effect’. After issuing directions to disable access to the first episode on websites using emergency powers under the IT Rules, 2021 and Section 69A of the IT Act, 2000, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) also blocked over 50 tweets with a link to the documentary. But this only resulted in citizens gaining access through screenings and shares over smartphones — akin to how the suppression of information has the unintended consequences of raising more awareness, or the ‘Streisand effect’. Other actions such as the police detention ...
Opinion

No control: The Hindu Editorial on the wave of mass shootings in the U.S.

Two mass shootings in 48 hours earlier this month in the U.S. State of California, claiming 18 lives, have been yet another grave reminder of the plague of gun violence confronting the world’s most powerful country. On January 21, in California’s Monterey Park, a gunman massacred 11 people in the country’s deadliest mass shooting so far this year. Two days later, seven people were killed in Half Moon Bay, in northern California. A few hours later, a shooting in Oakland resulted in one person being killed and seven others injured. “Tragedy upon tragedy,” was California Governor Gavin Newsom’s lament about the shootings. U.S. President Joe Biden, once again, called for a ban on assault weapons. Besides these statements, it is doubtful whether the U.S. Congress would pass any meaningful gu...
Opinion

A betrayal of the very idea of the Mahatma

This year marks the 75th anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination (January 30, 1948) by a Hindu fanatic who thought the Mahatma was too soft on Muslims. The momentous anniversary comes at a time when his legacy, the very idea of Gandhi, stands challenged by the prevailing ideological currents. At a time when the standing of his historic detractors, whose descendants now form the ruling dispensation in the country, is at an all-time high, Gandhiji has been criticised for weakness, for having bent over too far to accommodate Muslim interests, and for his pacifism, which is seen by the jingoistic Hindutva movement as unmanly. The Mahatma was killed, with the name of Rama on his lips, for being too pro-Muslim; indeed, he had just come out of a fast he had conducted to coerce his ow...