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Question

After reading your history of Jainism article I read more on the religion. Does it disturb you when some, not all members of the community reduce the tenants to just vegetarianism while overlooking ahimsa, ethical values and all the other tenants? I find it disturbing myself when so many Muslims reduce Islam to just not drinking, beard or hair scarf and conveniently leaving stuff out like being ethical or a good guy.

Posted By: Shahid Azad   |  Posted On: 30 Nov 2016  |  City: Kremlin

Answer

 Yes, it does. Jainism is not just about munis wearing masks. There is more to Hinduism than the caste system. And there's much more to Islam than jihad.
 
Sadly, we caricature the world's great religions and humanity is poorer for it.
 

Question

Vir old habits die hard -black money, tax evasion, foreign bank account is all due to Nehru-Indira policy of low growth and >90% tax, this incentivised black money. It is ingrained in system - may be little poor in execution but this demonitization might help destroy this old mind set - what you think ?

Posted By: Manish  |  Posted On: 29 Nov 2016  |  City: Mumbai

Answer

 It might, if it is followed up by crackdowns on the cash-using trading classes and the real estate sector. Plus, income tax rates should be reduced as should capital gains tax and the discretionary power of income tax officers to harass the salaried class should be taken away.
 

Question

Do you think the RJP - JDU alliance will survive for the entire term? And with the RJD-JDU split the collapse of the third front will be complete, mainly because the left around which the third front use to revolve is in trouble electorally?

Posted By: Manish Sharma  |  Posted On: 29 Nov 2016  |  City: Delhi

Answer

 It's almost impossible to say. I never thought it would happen so I am reluctant to predict when it will end.

Question

Most of Modi;s govt;s work has been in alienating their core bases - from shopkeepers with their currency ban, to making the middle class more responsible and more duty bound through initiatives like Swaccha Bharat, (which believe me we don't want & its inconvenient)

Do you see this backfiring big time? Why might people want to vote for him next election

Posted By: Guru  |  Posted On: 27 Nov 2016  |  City: Delhi

Answer

 There is no evidence -- at least in terms of opinion surveys -- that suggests that demonetisation has made a huge dent in Modi's popularity. In fact, people like Nitish Kumar believe that it has actually worked to Modi's advantage.
 
Polls are often wrong -- ask Hillary Clinton! -- but at the moment, they remain the best indicator we have of the public mood. So let's not jump to conclusions only on the basis of anecdotal evidence.
 

Question

I agreed with your tweet that Prime Minister Modi and Demonetization is still popular. If Prime Minister Modi manages the implementation well and comes up with a fabulous budget with big bang tax incentives for the salaried class and for the rural economy he will be on a roll electorally. Do you see him going all the way and winning the 2019 general elections and becoming the longest serving non-congress Prime Minister?

Posted By: Manish Sharma  |  Posted On: 22 Nov 2016  |  City: Delhi

Answer

 At the moment, he is still on course to win the next election. But he is only half way through his term so let's not make too many predictions as yet.

Question

All my FB, whatsapp urbane middle/upper middle friends hail Modi for his Demonetization scheme. But I dont feel convinced. Are those numerous lives and lacs of people being jobless for few days dont concern this class? or are they brainwashed by thousands of FB, whatsapp messages? or am I really missing anything? I also feel unsure about the success of this scheme. After Jan govt, will only show incomplete data portrayed good but who can actually show the real economic calculations (i.e. economic loss due to no work, time spent at queues, tourism loss etc)?

Posted By: Nat  |  Posted On: 21 Nov 2016  |  City: Pune

Answer

 One of the most distressing aspects of today's India is the insensitivity demonstrated by the urban middle class towards the suffering of the poor and especially the rural poor. In the short run, this may benefit Modi, but in the long run it will damage India.

Question

Awaiting a piece on demonitisation from you :-)

This provided a lot of insights into how the country is different especially the north-south divide. The south which has a little over 20% of the population was relatively calmer and slowly limping back to normal. As in queues, deaths & chaos also took place here but milder compared to the North where I think i can gather the queues longer, more chaotic and unruly. That was just an observation.

I mean, there is a lot of disparity within the nation and this gap needs to be reduced, Do you think disruptions like the demonitisation will help nudge under-served zones like North to also develop? Or perhaps even more migration from the north into the South?

Posted By: Karthik  |  Posted On: 20 Nov 2016  |  City: Madurai

Answer

 There is no evidence so far that demonetisation has helped any sector of the economy except for PayTm and the mobile wallets. Perhaps as time goes on, we will get more clarity on who benefits.
 

Question

I feel that Kejriwal has lost out on a great opportunity to steal a march on BJP with respect to the punjab polls. No one can debate the fact that the execution of the entire demonetisation exercise left much to be wanted. But instead of protesting the decision if AAP had deployed its cadre to serve people in lines at the bank with chairs or food and drink and publicised the fact, wouldn't it have helped them more? Especially in delhi punjab where their cadre base is huge. They could have said to the people that the BJP put you in this position by implementing a decision which was not thought through, but we came to your rescue.

Posted By: Sameer  |  Posted On: 19 Nov 2016  |  City: Mumbai

Answer

 I agree entirely. Kejriwal's biggest problem is that AAP's image is that of spoilers and disrupters. If he had used the opportunity afforded by demonetisation to turn that around, he would have benefitted.

Question

Sub:- Govt. should stop, harassing innocent 99 % of ~ 1.3 Billion people of India by doing drama of unearthing so-called black-money through de-monetization, ironically done during visit of UK PM Theresa May to India, a Member of Common Wealth (denying their wealth to the people of India, forcefully)

----- The media report that - ‘At the Cabinet meeting before Modi's announcement, ministers were told to keep their mobile phones outside the room and reports suggest that they were not allowed to leave till the PM's decision had been broadcast’ – legally constrains Prez Mukherjee (especially who has been Union Finance Minister hence knows about such massive de-monetization which has already killed 25 persons in addition to hug

Posted By: hemraj jain  |  Posted On: 16 Nov 2016  |  City: Bengaluru

Answer

 I don't dispute that the motives for demonetisation were sincere. But I do believe that the Prime Minister should have begun the consultation process far earlier. He should have talked to Pranab Mukherjee, to Yashwant Sinha, a former BJP finance minister, and one or two former RBI Governors. They would have told him what problems to anticipate and how to handle the transition better.
 
I don't accept the secrecy argument. None of these men would have betrayed the Prime Minister's trust. And in any case, how much secrecy was there, really? The government tells us that the mints were asked to start printing new notes several months in advance. If the people who ran the printing presses could be trusted, then the PM could have trusted a few more experts and people with experience.
 
This way the government has come across as ill-prepared and needless inconvenience has been caused to millions of people.
 

Question

What was Rahul Gandhi doing with 4000 INR and did he have enough time to stand in a queue?
I mean cant even the congress supporters see this as gimmicky and desparate, and surely the media too...
there must be better ways of getting attention, maybe he should move from the likes of Renuka chaudhury to more classier folks for advice, no?

Posted By: Sweekrut  |  Posted On: 16 Nov 2016  |  City: Secunderabad

Answer

 Good questions. You should direct them to Rahul Gandhi.

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