Showing posts from February, 2020

An Ode To Arrogance!

Arrogance is one of the defining characteristics of human beings. Arrogance can be easily discerned or felt by us in every word or act or posture or gait displayed by the inflicted persons. We confront them everywhere—at home where the arrogance of the head of the household is as ancient as the homo sapiens; at workplace where the arrogance of the boss percolates down the line very often apart from the others in various sycophantic roles; at educational institutions where the most scholarly often displays the most arrogance apart from the others in various emphatic roles; in the ruling class hierarchy arrogance has been a trademark notwithstanding the transformation from monarchy/dictatorship to democracy in many nations of the world; and so on. Of course, no generalization has been attempted here: else, how on earth can we have the magnanimity of discussing it! The word ‘arrogance’ has, logically, numerous synonyms. Here we’ll mention a few examples so that our discourse is e

I Don’t Know!

Although the phrase ‘I don’t know’ seems to be a straightforward and simple expression of human ignorance, at times its connotations, hidden meanings and subdued emotions can vary dangerously. At the simplest level it’s a frank and honest admission, and we good people mostly adhere to it while making such an expression. However, it differs with the persons one makes this admission to: if you’re forced to make it to your teacher or boss you’re a little ashamed of yourself, and you try always to make it the briefest, and the mildest expression as far as your vocal chords are concerned. To your parents or siblings or friends you tend to be a little angry as if they deliberately selected the areas in which you are deficient—to tease or taunt you. Sometimes, in general, you give a broad grin as if it were a joke at you being asked a certain question to which your answer ‘I don’t know’ cascades out in turbulent of waves of uncontrollable laughter: of course, such a reaction of yours nee

No Eating Standing!

Kolkata (Calcutta of yore) is still called the city of joy, in my view, for one basic reason: things are very cheap here considering the fact that it is one of the four metro cities of India—apart, of course, from its treasure house of classic and progressive literature, three Nobel laureates, its enriched culture and heritage. To retain our emphasis, it offers the cheapest options in almost all fields of life: for example, metro train fare is still pegged at minimum five rupees which you’ll find nowhere else; other public transport fares are also the lowest in comparison with other Indian cities, it is a different matter altogether if the comfort quotient here is probably pushed into oblivion; auto-rickshaws are mostly shared for which you need        only a few coins in your pocket, and the app cabs are also forced to abide by low fares due to which the aggregators indulge often in orgies of mad surge prices, picking any occasion or the time; if you are a voracious reader you ca

Cricket Of Whitewashes—Now New Zealand ODI-Swamp India 3-0!

Photo: After India whitewashed New Zealand by 5-0 in the T20I Series now New Zealand whitewash back with a 3-0 triumph over India in the 3-match one-day international (ODI0 Series. In the third and final match today at Mount Maunganui New Zealand thrashed India by 5 wickets, despite a challenging target of 297 put by India. With NZ openers Guptill and Nicholls going-great-guns the Kiwis overtook the target with relative ease. In the first match the hosts assailed India’s target of 347, the stiffest and highest of the series, with quite a few balls to spare exposing the visitors’ bowling woes. Some Indian commentators have once again played with the word ‘complacency’ saying that perhaps the Indians were a bit complacent after the T20 whitewash! Well, over the decades this writer has been utterly unable to understand how a professional team affords to be complacent against another professional team in very competitive international matches. The hyped p

Brown Sugar And The Olden Rage!

We had about ten minutes before joining the boarding queue. Although we had a good breakfast at the hotel the running-around packing, carrying/arranging the baggage and the fairly tedious taxi drive to the airport made us hungry again. The prices on board are exorbitant which means we will remain hungry for at least three hours before we reach our destination—not to mention one more tediously long taxi drive home, I reason. Therefore, we decided to have a quick bite; accordingly, leaving my wife with the bags I ran to a fast-food stall at the airport lounge. I ordered two chicken puffs and a cup of tea: cannot pay so much for tea, and so one cup will have to provide the rudimentary sips for the two of us. After taking custody of the puffs and large paper cup of tea I looked around for the sugar sachets. I picked up a sachet, tore it up and as I started pouring it over the cup of tea I suddenly stopped. The contents that came down looked brown and I found the color suspicious:

Union Budget-2020: The Optional Personal Income Tax Regime In India!

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today presented the Union Budget for 2020-21 in Parliament. A few novelties are seen immediately: the Minister’s budget speech of more than 160 minutes proved to be the longest one in history; for the first time the Budget was presented in three innovative categories—Aspiration India, Economic Development and Caring Society with their divisions and sections; a new scheme of setting up solar pumps for farmers having barren lands thus allowing them to earn even without cultivation; identifying 100 water-stressed districts of the country for action in light of the looming water crisis; and a lucrative income tax regime of lower rates which only turns out to be optional. While economists and corporate stalwarts had been shouting all these months about boosting up the demand factor in view of a slowdown and growing unemployment the Budget didn’t list out specific measures to increase consumption or to provide more employment opportunities apart