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Trends about Petrol and Diesel Prices in India - Some Thoughts

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No small matter, this Much noise is being made on the rising petrol and diesel prices in India. Is it worth the shouting matches that are being indulged in? When one looks at the petrol and diesel prices data from the Petroleum Pricing and Analysis Cell under the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Government of India, and starts doing some basic analysis, interesting trends start to emerge. As against the petrol price increments that were taking place between April 2007 and April 2014, the price of petrol has been under control, lower than what it could have been if the trends had continued. This can be understood when one sees the trendline based on prices for this period versus the actual prices for the subsequent period till 1 June 2021. It must be noted though that the anomaly could very well be a result of suppression of fuel prices under the UPA for the longest time. Interestingly, the UPA government had removed the market flexibility policy that the previous Vajpayee regime

Just Who are the Real Anti-Science People in India? The Government, or the Media?

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The Circus Called Indian Media (courtesy: Mint) The latest advisory of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on treating COVID-19 gains praise from a wide spectrum of the medical and scientific community for its evidence-based approach towards COVID management . Also, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi went on record to laud India’s scientific community for their invaluable contribution to the nation’s fight against the COVID pandemic. However, given the utterly deplorable and false propaganda of a section of India’s liberal community, it is time to ask a few tough questions of the eminent liberals of our country who think they know more than scientists. Modi Government’s Multiple Steps in Sync with Science That the oh so liberal liberati of India was bereft of any cranial abilities was well known. What has been on demonstration for more than a year and a half however account for nothing less than plagiarism. The word plagiarism is used because the model templates that their

How The Scientific Community's Behavior Regarding the COVID Pandemic Has Harmed Trust in Science

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Source: Wikimedia Commons The consensual comity of scientists have failed the world on the COVID pandemic, and the strike down is not on just one count alone. Why do I say so, many would ask? Just look at all the evidence piling up since last year, finally being accepted with great reluctance regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Finally, the world, driven by its science based policy making systems, has been forced to accept the possibility of a laboratory leakage. This, when there has always been evidence to suggest that the COVID-19 virus pandemic was likely triggered by a leakage from a virology lab in China, where it was perhaps being studied. Accidental or not, what is certainly known to us is that the global comity of scientists has shamed itself by covering up through herd consensus and attempting to discredit alternative views, and raises serious questions on how the public can believe them anymore. What is even more problematic is the fact that ‘gain of function’ research has been

The Need for an Economic Recovery for India during and post-pandemic

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With the ongoing pandemic a few things are now becoming obvious on the economic front.  The much touted economic recovery plan Aatmanirbhar Bharat has been partly successful; however, with judicial interference now and anticipated in the future, one can see the reform roll out promised under the program failing to materialize before end of 2023. The Loan sanction vs disbursal ratio under the emergency credit loan guarantee scheme clearly did not pan out on desired lines for some crucial reasons I had highlighted earlier. Agricultural reforms remain in the cold storage for now.  Part success of course has been used because PLI schemes of certain sectors have received great response . Particular focus for applause should go on mining, pharmaceuticals and electronics, as well as medical devices which also hold great promise and can be indeed transformative along with textiles. However, in the other sectors it remains an expression of noble intentions like solar PV modules and electric bat

The Indian Middle Class' Disaffection with the Modi Government

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Courtesy: Times of India Yes, you read it right. There is disaffection in the Indian middle class right now with the Narendra Modi government. This is not about tier I wine sipping elite intellectuals. This is about the great Indian middle class that has suffered immensely due to the COVID lockdown. This is the great Indian middle class of tier II, tier III and tier IV, living across India, many of whose children were working in tier I cities but lost their jobs and came back to sit idle at home. This is the great Indian middle class that forms a significant skilled migrant set that is increasingly getting  frustrated at the lack of job opportunities in the job market. This is the great Indian middle class that pays taxes across all hues but does not count as a significant voter base any more for the BJP. There is this sentiment among several well wishers turned haters that the BJP rose on the backs of the Indian middle class only to trample its spine and move forward to ensure that it

Will 2024 Witness the Rise of the Urban India?

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One of the important takeaways that just does not seem to get registered from the West Bengal assembly elections is the middle class voters particularly the urban middle class literally deserting the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). It may seem a strange trend; however, it is not a one off incident. Rather, this seems to be a trend that no has been noticing for a while, especially in the assembly elections across various states. Over the years, the BJP actually shifted its vote base from the urban centres to the rural centres. What started in 2004 solidified into significant electoral successes in 2014 and 2019. However, there is a lot to worry about for a party that should be wiser to the change taking place. India’s middle class is not necessarily middle class by world standards . Let us make no mistake about it. Most of the middle class still makes what would be considered sub-par wages as per World Bank definitions. However, what differentiates them is the fact that purchasing power w

Has There Been Callousness in Managing COVID During Elections? Looking at the Numbers

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Courtesy: India TV There has been a lot of criticism about the Election Commission's handling of the COVID pandemic. One would imply that the cases have exploded as a result of the electioneering in India. There is no logic behind this argument for a simple reason - this logic flies in the face of the fact that states like Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Punjab should not have been facing any outbreaks of the kind that are reeling under, given there are no elections there. Even if one were to believe that logic, the numbers should have actually reflected the spike within a month's time. The reason behind the month's timeline is that the cases take at least a week to surface and another two to three weeks to be clear from the human system for the survivors and mildly affected people. Assuming that a person was affected within seven days of attending a rally or a roadshow, the numbers should start reflecting in the moving average.  When one takes up the data for t