Biased decision

The citizens of India are not so dumb that they will believe in the highly biased discussions on channels like Republic TV and a few others (Centre freezes advertisements to the Times Group, ABP Group and The Hindu: Report). Those channels make it so obvious where their biases lie without realising that citizens are sick of their channels.

If advertisements have been stopped, put an article about it in your newspaper asking other advertisers to increase their quota of ads. We have a substantial intelligentsia in this country and they will not let down honest, unbiased media. – James Joseph


Freedom of press, journalism, speech and expression of thoughts cannot be suppressed. It should be maintained at all the cost. What you have done comes under brave and fearless journalism. I support you. Keep it up and print your point of view more strongly and effectively. – Pravin Admane


It is the government’s prerogative to decide whom they will give advertisements to. I do not think that not giving advertisements is illegal, nor does it prove any bias. It is an executive decision and neither, nor The Wire nor the Janta Ka Reporter can write scurrilous articles about. Those are the articles which are biased, without proof and pure cases of yellow journalism.

Why don’t these worthy left-leaning rag sheets write something in Xi’s China? Or better still, in Putin’s Russia? I assure you that their editors and owners will disappear and advertisements will be the least of their problems. No one should be banned, but their existence on money laundering, gross financial records manipulation and outright fraud should surely be circumscribed.

Yellow journalism in the US will cost $100 million or up to 25 years in jail – the former is not even the combined net worth of the rag sheets concerned. Meanwhile, in China and Russia, you will never be seen again. Is it any wonder that rag sheets exist only in India? – Sandeep Parmar


Be free, frank and fearless. – Cyriac Matthew


It is a matter of great concern that the government is gradually reducing advertisements in newspapers that criticise their wrongdoings. Is this not the first step towards an authoritarian rule? – Bonoykrishna Sen


If the reason is printing truthful, correct and honest reports, the truthful media should carry on its honest, truthful reporting. The press is one pillar of democracy, which cannot be forgotten. Otherwise, citizens will lose total trust in the media. – Jatinderpal Singh


I am feeling angry about this issue. This is a totally undemocratic decision. Are we so helpless that we can’t organise a protest against this? I think it is great that you are not yielding to yellow journalism. Please go ahead with your free expression. – Sudeshna Chaudhuri


Good decision by the government. Lutyens’ media should be boycotted. – Kalyan Mondal


All you newspapers are biased and full of trash news. We have stopped buying these trash newspapers and now the government has also has stopped giving advertisements to these trash newspapers. It is a good thing that the government has done. Aachee din ayenge, aur slowly aaa rahe hai. [Better days will come, and are anyway coming slowly.] – Soham Attawar


When the media is neutral, criticism is welcome. But these papers are biased and deadly against anything done by the government, irrespective of the good in their action. Their bias is justified in the name of the free press. – Raghavender Metpally


The government is on a path of dictatorship. They are against freedom of the press and against the voice of the people who fight BJP’s gundaism. – Miqbal Sheikh

Big, fat Gupta wedding

Maybe permission was granted to the Gupta’s to hold the functions at Auli so that the place becomes popular and is known to more people – as a means to promote tourism (What their big fat Auli wedding revealed about the Gupta family – and India’s elites). The Guptas should have chosen the place where they could celebrate the things in their own way without any restrictions or without following any rules. Even if they had to choose a resort for their functions – whether, in India or abroad – they should have followed the rules of the place not celebrated the way they have in Auli. – Rajiv Mehta

At the Oval

The recently concluded India-England match witnessed India’s struggle to outpace top-order batsmen in the initial 20 overs (We weren’t clinical with the bat: Kohli admits Indian batsmen failed to accelerate against England). Despite losing the toss, the favourites did not utilise much of the opportunity available on the steady pitch and thus the benefit of the doubt was in favour of English batsmen with a run rate exceeding six runs per over.

Team India should now focus on getting quicker wickets while bowling first, irrespective of the toss factor. English conditions are a challenge to new age bowlers who haven’t yet set a mark on its soil. Hence the onus of getting good wickets depends on the bowling squad who must reduce the opponent’s mammoth scorecard as witnessed in previous games.

The team has already suffered a major blow with the exit of Shikhar Dhawan owing to injury. As Indian team has already berthed in the semi-finals, it now should not be carried away by its mere successive win record in this tournament and should instead, focus on strengthening the bowling department, especially when put to field first. – Varun Dambal


But why are Bijoy Sankar and Kedar Jadhav in the India team? (World Cup 2019: Why Kohli is right in banking on Dhoni, the tactician, despite his obvious struggles) What is their contribution? Why is everyone behind MS Ddoni? – Dipak Saha


India got 268 because of Dhoni but they couldn’t get 290 because of him? Dhoni reads the situation well and he plays for it. Sitting outside and giving comments on a player like him is shameful. – Thanisha Udayakumar

The intelligence debate

This comment is regarding an article published on June 28 titled Watch: 11-year-old Anushka Dixit is officially smarter than Stephen Hawking. The above statement is categorically incorrect. IQ by definition is a measure of the intelligence or smartness of a person respective to his/her peers of the same age. Wikipedia says, “Historically, IQ is a score obtained by dividing a person’s mental age score, obtained by administering an intelligence test, by the person’s chronological age, both expressed in terms of years and months. The resulting fraction is multiplied by 100 to obtain the IQ score.”

Making the claim in the headline is akin to saying that the average 11-year-old is as smart or intelligent as the average adult because they would both score a 100 on the IQ test. – Tanmay Jaiswal


Its really great to hear about people with higher IQs, but comparing the present generation with the legends like Stephen Hawking or Albert Einstein is not appealing. From data available from the internet I learnt that there is a 3 point to 5 point increase in the average human IQ level with every decade.

That means a person born in 1950s with IQ of 145 was actually of higher intelligence than rest born in the same year or than a person born in 2010 with an IQ of 163 – six decades multiplied by three points each. Yes, we can say that generations are getting smarter, but making a comparison is foolish. – Parin Savla


“Men who boast about their IQ are losers,” said Stephen Hawking. – Amey Narwadkar

Cow politics

Such a surrender to the fanaticism of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and the Bharatiya Janata Party will only pave the way for the decline of the Congress party in coming days (Before crackdown on gau rakshaks, Congress government in MP charged cow slaughter-accused under NSA). Congress should stand and fight for the creation of progressive policies. They should spread modern values or the party can be dissolved and merged with the BJP.

It’s a shame that persons such as Kamalnath are in Congress, occupying high positions. Morally he is fit to be in the front ranks of the cow party. – Muthu Senthamizhan


This continuous effort to spread hatred through ideological toxicity has been created by the followers of fringe ideology for years. Hindutva as a vision of nationalism was an idea of the fringes when India became independent. But the actual propaganda attained success in the last few years, especially in the tenure of this government. The attempts to temper the mind of the youth through wrong and fabricated history will definitely cost the future of the country. – Mohammad Suhail

Understanding Sadhguru

The writer has failed to muster rational dissent against Jaggi Vasudev (Opinion: The disturbing irrationalism of Jaggi Vasudev). It’s another thesis written just for the sake of opposition. If Vasudev has been sponsored by BJP, as averred by the writer, the feature has been... – KV Rao


Jaggi Vasudev’s strategy is well explained. His tantric dress, fluency, gestures and expression impresses many. A thorough analysis exposes the shallowness of his speeches. Good thing is that he doesn’t promise or perform miracles.

His principle of teaching that “assumes the listener is an open-minded teenager who understands if explained in simple terms”, is well implemented by leaders in social, political and religious marketing.

A listener is taken back to the imbecile stage, to cheer and jump when these self-styled gurus or netas speak. A rational person would not fall to pray to these gurus. Promote rational and realistic approaches to life. – G Sivaramakrishna


Interesting reactions to a well thought out article on Jaggi Vasudev (Readers’ comments: article on Jaggi Vasudev biased, writer must spend time meditating). It would be really interesting if the writer meets Jaggi Vasudev as suggested by many and the writes about his experience. – S Mathias

Points of view

Mahua Moitra’s speech is universally acknowledged (Watch: BJP has ‘lust to divide’, says Trinamool MP Mahua Moitra in a fiery maiden speech). The truth, pride, rich knowledge and overall human spirit that she showed in her maiden speech is splendid and superb. She beat everyone. She has kept such a low profile always that we could not focus on her talent. Long live Mahua Moitra. – Anjali Goswami


Hindu ideologue? (Hindutva ideologue Rajiv Malhotra appointed JNU honorary visiting professor) Right! What is A Sharia Bolshevik outlet. He was never charged with plagiarism. Live your lies. – Arun Jetli


On policy

What about post-flood Kerala? (G20 summit: Narendra Modi invites member countries to join coalition on disaster resilience). Rs 6,000 crore has been removed from the borrowing limit, impacting reconstruction after the disaster. – Meera Velayudhan


At a time when jobs are shrinking it is not advisable to close BSNL (State-owned BSNL once dominated India’s telecom sector. Now it’s broke). Instead, the government should come forward with a solution to revive BSNL by appointing an expert committee to look into the issue and revive it. Better management and technology up-gradation may be needed along with long term investments. Ramaraj Palanisamy


This is in response to the article, Twitter will now hide political figures’ tweets that break its rules. Firstly, it wouldn’t be justified that the impact is born by just those in politics and not the influential mass as a whole because they have the same effect on the larger public.

Secondly, public interest is a highly subjective matter. Even having a room full of professionals to determine the future of the post may not be the best method to make it happen. Generalisations may still have a role to play and important information might get missed out in that process. Either the post shouldn’t make it to the eyes of the public or should be present for everyone to see. The situation in between might not be the most effective solution.

If a post is scrapped out, the user can still convey their message by attaching the required link to the tweet and make the process smoother, so that the public isn’t devoid of the information. This will also prevent the app from displaying any kind of information which doesn’t move along the given guidelines. – Upasana Sarangi


Chitrangada Choudhury’s illustrated article – or maybe exposé is a better word – on how the government is usurping Adivasi land is thorough, well-researched and well-argued (An Indian government afforestation programme is brazenly usurping Adivasi land). The shield thoughtfully provided by the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Act, 2016, should ensure that the foul actions of the BJP-run governments – at the Centre and in the States – shall benefit large business houses at the cost of already poor Adivasis. Mukul Dube

Miscellaneous musings

Nothing could be truer than Ali Kazmi’s comment that the Canadian art world, unaware of the context, has largely embraced Sidhu uncritically (Canadian artist Nep Sidhu’s show sparks debate on Khalistani bid to recast subcontinental history). But, I have met a number of artists in my community who have questions about the politics of the show’s ideas. They felt they could not openly critique it. Some feared backlash.

Canadians, the Liberal government included, are easily duped – sometimes coerced- into accepting the Khalistani version of the subcontinent’s history. For example, Darshan Singh Canadian, a well-respected British Columbia Sikh labour leader, was systematically ignored and even vilified by Canada’s Sikh community.

He was eventually murdered by Khalistani elements in India in the 1980s. How many Canadians know about him? The problem is also with the rest of the South-Asian community’s inability to effectively counter the concerted and media-savvy efforts to recast the subcontinent’s politics and history. – Richard Corliss


What a marvellous story! (In Islamabad of the 1980s, a mixtape was the only stairway to [musical] heaven) Reaffirmed my faith that I don’t have a psychological problem just because I still collect and privately write about my mix-tape collection., you beauty! – Rohit Mehrotra


This sentence, “His literary allegiance, more simply, is to VS Naipaul. Many readers will recognise and enjoy the outwardly-directed rage, roasting every sentence to a crisp accusation, that covers for horror and sympathy so deep that it risks self-indulgence” (This book calls out India’s political betrayals sharply, but does not shake the edifice hard enough). I liked!

But most of the rest, to this emigrant looking back, looks like the hopes of one Indian Leftist looking for corroboration of her point of view in the writings of another. – Ajit Dongre