• Stone-pelting, Twitter abuse: Why Indian cricket fans react violently?

    The latest to earn the wrath of the fans is Yuvraj Singh. He was not only vilified on Twitter but also his house was pelted with stones by the so-called ‘fans’ of the Indian team.

    Fans burn Indian players posters following the team's loss against Sri Lanka in 2007 World cup. (AFP)

    Do cricketers and their fans have an unsigned agreement between each other over performances on a field? Has the cricketer, by not performing up to fans expectations, caused any physical or psychological or traumatic harm to them? If the answer is no, then it is incomprehensible to see the superstars being targeted by fans when the Indian team loses. Stone-pelting, vandalising cricketer’s home, burning effigies and mocking a bad performance on social networking sites are the ways fans express their frustration and anger.

    The latest to earn the wrath of the fans is Yuvraj Singh. He was not only vilified on Twitter but also his house was pelted with stones by the so-called ‘fans’ of the Indian team.

    Renowned sports psychologist Dr. Chaitanya Sridhar explains the three basic reasons why the Indian fans love the game of cricket which will help in understanding their behaviour.

    1. Entertainment - Cricket is perceived to be a form of leisure. It provides a 'high' and is associated with positive

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  • When Koleos was first launched in India in 2011, Renault was quite an unfamiliar brand to most Indian buyers. Later, the French company’s five-product plan for India secured it a place among the heavyweights, while the prodigious success of the Duster made Renault a household name. Now, as the carmaker’s Indian flagship gets a major makeover, a cheaper price tag and addition of three new variants give Koleos a more serious purpose.

    Design

    The 2014 Koleos carries over the design language of the model it replaces. It looks more of a smooth crossover than a rugged SUV. The face now gets a wider grille that stretches from headlamp to headlamp. It also houses a bolder and larger Renault badge. While new alloy wheels and chrome side-protectors are new in profile, rear is left untouched.

    Interiors aren’t a drastic upgrade over the outgoing model either. Although the dashboard design does justice to SUV standards, I am skeptical about its overall quality, especially in a car with a price north

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  • Slap Kejriwal, because you can

    Try that with Modi, Lalu or Mayawati, if you can.


    There is no lasting hope in violence, only temporary relief from hopelessness - Kingman Brewster, Jr
     
    India had a double facepalm moment when on Thursday Samajwadi Party chief and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav nonchalantly opposed capital punishment for rape, saying "ladke, ladke hain...galti ho jati hai [boys will be boys...they commit mistakes]."
     
    "Boys and girls befriend each other. When they fall out, a rape complaint is lodged. We will change this law and will make a provision for penalizing people who misuse the law by filing frivolous complaints," said Mulayam. "If boys and girls have difference, and the girl goes and gives a statement that I have been raped, then the poor fellows are punished."
     
    The statement predictably triggered an outpouring of outrage - on social media, where the Aam Aadmi Party operates, but that space hardly matters to 'mass leaders' like Mr Yadav or Abu Azmi, who went a step further saying "rape is punishable by hanging in Islam.

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  • A day in the life of an AAP worker

    The Aam Aadmi Party, despite being a newbie, is known for its aggressive style of campaigning. The writer spends a day with one of the foot soldiers of the AAP in Bangalore to understand the method behind the madness.

    Standing near a temple, Sitaram is about to move to the next lane to distribute more of the Aam Aadmi Party pamphlets as he is approached by a young boy requesting him for one of his party topis. The boy returns to playing cricket, disappointed, as Sitaram has exhausted all the caps. The party activist is more dejected than the kid, who by now has forgotten about the cap and is happy walloping a cricket ball over the park.

    Sitaram begins his day by holding an AAP placard at major traffic signals, generally from 8 to 11 am, in different wards of Basavangudi in the south Bangalore constituency, his place of assignment. The placard carries a photo of Nina Nayak, AAP's candidate from the south Bangalore constituency, a plea to vote for her and the AAP symbol - jhaadu (a broom).

    Holding placards, distributing pamphlets are some of the campaigning activities that the AAP foot soldiers are involved in. But is distributing AAP caps also a way of promotion?

    "Yes, it is. We have given away

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  • 30 smart ideas from BJP’s manifesto 2014

    Sunny Narang, a New Delhi based entrepreneur-mentor who is invested in sporting talent, craft and design culls out what he calls some ‘smart ideas’ from the BJP manifesto. His core assessment is that they have left no sector or interest group untouched.

     

    30 smart ideas from BJP’s manifesto 2014

     

    Why a manifesto makes sense

    Everyone is promising a utopian future on paper, in a text document which can be copy-pasted from anywhere in the world. Many now believe it is anachronistic to talk of manifestos in the digital age. But it still makes sense to get an idea of what is the general and detailed drift of a political party.

    What is its top-line thinking on policy concerning various issues and on sections of the republic? It is also essential now to hold each party to the spirit and letter of its promises nationally, regionally and locally.

    My basis for choosing these 30 ideas as smart

    The manufacturing output declined 0.2 per cent in 2013/2014 compared with 1.1 per cent growth the previous year, dragging down the overall economy. There is a huge youth population that needs employment. There are falling water tables, polluted rivers, land issues, stagnant agriculture, vanishing craftspeople, and loss of cultural diversity.

    Reading through the BJP manifesto actually surprised me

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  • Why Narendra Modi should not be PM

    Do we want a prime minister against whom there are multiple allegations of violation of human rights, of actively sanctioning a religious massacre? Do we want someone as PM whose antipathy towards a certain community has been documented widely.

    They say 'change' is the only constant. And 'change' is precisely what happened to Narendra Modi.
     
    Ten years back, it would have been unimaginable to even suggest Narendra Modi's name as a prime ministerial candidate. Now, thanks to an image makeover that he owes to a seemingly vibrant Gujarat and a corrupt central government, Modi is the foremost candidate to lead the country.
     
    No other politician in independent India has been demonised as much as Modi, but one has to concede that his resilience – stubbornness, if you will - is what has helped him tide over the massive criticism that he invoked after the Godhra carnage. The genocide remains a blemish that threatens to cast a pall of gloom over his campaign.
     
    In a way, it has not been so much a change as it has been a reversal of polarity. Modi was in the headlines for all the wrong reasons in the immediate aftermath of the Gujarat riots. Ten years hence, he remains in the limelight - a hugely popular, engaging, irritating figure on

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  • Welding a boot to a hatchback to build a sub-4 metre sedan and the subsequent design disaster is nothing new to us. But, hey, look at the new Hyundai Xcent. Despite being a sub-4 metre variant of the GRAND i10 hatchback, the Xcent flaunts a well-sculpted body that makes it arguably the best-looking sub-4 metre sedan as yet.

    Design

    One has to admit that achieving a well-proportionate sub-4 metre design out of a hatchback is no easy matter. That said, designers at Hyundai have done a wonderful job of seamlessly adding a boot to the GRAND i10. Inevitably, the Xcent is identical to the hatchback till the B-pillar. The roofline then blends beautifully into the boot with the help of slightly reworked rear window. Though not an eyesore, the rear profile is rather bland and doesn’t gel flawlessly with the rest of the car. Top variants get 15-inch diamond cut alloy wheels that give the sedan a slightly beefier stance.
    As far as the dimensions go, the Xcent shares the hatchback’s 2,425mm

    Read More »from Road Test and Review: Hyundai Xcent
  • Would I trust my money with this candidate?

    Dr. Trilochan Sastry looks at the link between you, your government and this election.

    Dr. Trilochan Sastry, chairman and founder of the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR), blogs for Yahoo on Elections 2014. ADR’s work in strengthening democracy includes pioneering legal cases that made it mandatory for all election candidates to file affidavits and make public their earnings.

    This is the first of a series of blogs that will continue through April. Dr Sastry’s blogs will look at everything from one prism – the link between you, your government and this election.

    Today, take a look at the link between your hard-earned cash and these elections.


    How the new government will affect your family life

    The government plans to spend Rs 17,63,000 crore of our money in 2014-15 per the budget tabled by the Finance Minister in Parliament. Most of us can’t even imagine what this amount of money is. It translates into a little over Rs 14,500 per person each year, or nearly Rs 75,000 per family per year. If a government lasts five years, this translates into nearly Rs 3.75 lakh per

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  • Kejriwal provokes, Modi reacts; AAP wins small battle

    Modi's delayed, yet, direct attack shows the BJP's prime ministerial candidate has finally accepted that the AAP can create a few hurdles for the BJP in the general elections.

    As Arvind Kejriwal turned 49, he earned a moniker, 'AK49' from his supporters. The moniker was given out of reverence for his feat of thumping the invincible Sheila Dixit in the Delhi assembly elections last year and also his 'audacity' to take on the political heavyweights on the issues of corruption and price rise.

    Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, too, addressed Kejriwal as 'AK49' recently. It was not out of respect, but a jibe. Modi alleged the Aam Aadmi Party leader was an 'agent of Pakistan'. Modi's attack on Kejriwal comes after the AAP leader's consistent and direct allegations of crony capitalism, Gujarat government forcibly seizing lands from farmers, and also fake development claims in the state.
     
    Modi's delayed, yet, direct attack shows the BJP's prime ministerial candidate has finally accepted that the AAP can create a few hurdles for the BJP in the general elections. Earlier, Modi's nonchalance towards Kejriwal's no-holds-barred attack on

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  • Probably by now, most of us have heard and read so much about the reincarnation of Datsun and their first car for India – the GO. Some of us have even seen the car at the Auto Expo or at the showroom previews. Expectations run high when a brand returns after almost 33 years with a mass-market car. I recently spent a day with the Datsun GO to find out if the car lives up to the high expectations.

    Design

    Datsun Go has a flawless styling, with some smart touches and neat proportions. The hexagonal honeycomb grille with chrome surround looks handsome without being edgy. The sharp and angular design of the headlamps and the airdams add to the chiseled look of the car’s face. The profile is clean, but marred by the skinny 155/70R13 tyres. The rear, though bland, doesn’t disappoint with raked windshield and bulging taillights. GO’s simple yet elegant exterior design is certainly among the best in the A segment.
    Although the Datsun GO is based on Nissan Micra’s V-platform, there’s no

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