Odds and Ends 

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi says he is thinking about quitting social media

Another major figure could soon join the list of a growing number of people who are done with social media: The leader of the world’s largest democracy. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted Monday evening (local time) that he was thinking about giving up on his Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube accounts. Modi, whose 53 million followers on Twitter make him one of the most popular figures on the microblogging social network, did not offer any rationale for his thinking. On his Facebook page, he has more than 44 million…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Indian bike rental startup Bounce raises $105M

Bounce, a Bangalore-based startup that operates more than 20,000 electric and gasoline dockless bikes and scooters in nearly three dozen cities in India, said today it has raised $105 million in a new funding round as it explores sustainable ways to expand within the nation and build its own electric vehicles. The new financing round, a Series D, was co-led by existing investors Eduardo Saverin’s B Capital and Accel Partners, the startup said. The new round valued Bounce at a little over $500 million, up from about $200 million in…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

The Wonderfully Decorative Ceilings of Taxis in Mumbai (28 Photos)

Rachel Lopez has dedicated her Instagram account to documenting the colorful and decorative roofs of taxis in Mumbai. From kitschy variations of fruit, to dizzying floral patterns and everything in between; it’s a nice little surprise to see what you will find if you remember to look up while on your way from point A to point B. Lopez shared her first taxi ceiling shot in April of 2017, and since then she has taken hundreds more for her ever-growing Instagram following. Below you will find a gallery of our…

Read More
Headlines 

India protests: six dead as demonstrators vow to continue to fight citizenship changes

Thousands chant long live Assam during unrest sparked by MPs approval of a law that excludes Muslims The death toll from bloody clashes sparked by contentious citizenship law has risen to six as protesters in north-east India vowed to continue demonstrations. Tensions remained high at the epicentre of the unrest in Assam states biggest city, Guwahati, with troops patrolling the streets on Sunday. In Assam, four people died after being shot by police, while another was killed when a shop he was sleeping in was set on fire and a…

Read More
Headlines 

Violent clashes continue in India over new citizenship bill

Protests spread to Delhi as BJP government accused of making Muslims second-class citizens Violent clashes erupted in Delhi amid allegations a new citizenship bill discriminates against Muslims and undermines the secular foundations of India, with protests over the legislation spreading to other regions and prompting Japans prime minister to cancel a visit to the country. Thousands took to the streets of Assams capital Guwahati for the third day, following the death of two protesters who were caught in police fire on Thursday. The north-eastern state has been the epicentre of…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Immigrants from China and India can accelerate the green card process

Sophie Alcorn Limits written into existing immigration laws on both the number of green cards issued each year, as well as the number of green cards available based on country of origin, leave some waiting half a century or more for a green card, with people from India and China facing the longest wait times for employment-based green cards. Although these U.S. laws pose an extra challenge for people born in countries with the highest demand for green cards, if you were born in India or China, there are some…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

India moves closer to regulating internet services as it fears unimaginable disruption to democracy

India said on Monday that it is moving ahead with its plan to revise existing rules to regulate intermediaries — social media apps and others that rely on users to create their content — as they are causing “unimaginable disruption” to democracy. In a legal document filed with the country’s apex Supreme Court, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology said it would formulate the rules to regulate intermediaries by January 15, 2020. In the legal filing, the government department said the internet had “emerged as a potent tool to…

Read More
Headlines 

A new India is emerging, and it is a country ruled by fear | Amit Chaudhuri

Modis vision for the country is one that stifles dissent and difference, says the author and academic Amit Chaudhuri Four months have passed since Narendra Modi and the BJP came back to power in India, and more seems to have happened there than in the last 40 years. The sense of suspension of civil liberties in the emergency of 1975 to 1977 and the political traumas that followed. This is because without the matter being explicitly articulated citizen has been set against citizen: not just Muslim against Hindu or, say,…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Indias Milkbasket in talks to raise over $50M

Milkbasket, a Gurugram-based micro-delivery startup, is in talks to close a new financing round as it looks to expand its footprint in the milk, grocery, fruit and vegetable delivery market that has attracted the attention of many in recent months, including Amazon India. The four-year-old startup is in advanced stages of talks with private equity funds to raise more than $50 million, people familiar with the matter told TechCrunch. The round, Series C, is likely to close within the next two months, they said. A spokesperson of Milkbasket, which has…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Japans mobile payments app PayPay reaches 10 million users

Paytm, India’s biggest mobile payments firm, now has 10 million customers in Japan, the company said as it pushes to expand its reach in international markets. Paytm entered Japan last October after forming a joint venture with SoftBank and Yahoo Japan called PayPay. In addition to 10 million users, PayPay is now supported by 1 million merchant partners and local stores in Japan, Vijay Shekhar Sharma, founder and CEO of Paytm said Thursday. The mobile payments app has clocked more than 100 million transactions to date in the nation, he claimed.…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Trump: I Could Win Afghan War in a WeekBut Dont Want to Kill 10 Million People

President Donald Trump on Monday claimed he could easily win a war in Afghanistan in a week, but doesnt want to go that route because hed have to kill 10 million people. The president, speaking to reporters alongside visiting Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan, said he wants Pakistan to help extricate the U.S. from its longest war. U.S. officials have been trying to negotiate a peace deal with the Afghan Taliban. I have plans on Afghanistan that if I wanted to win that war, Afghanistan would be wiped off…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

WhatsApp reaches 400 million users in India, its biggest market

WhatsApp has amassed more than 400 million users in India, the instant messaging app confirmed today, reaffirming its gigantic reach in its biggest market. Amitabh Kant, CEO of highly influential local think-tank NITI Aayog, revealed the new stat at a press conference held by WhatsApp in New Delhi on Thursday. A WhatsApp spokesperson confirmed that the platform indeed had more than 400 million monthly active users in the country. The remarkable revelation comes more than two years after WhatsApp said it had hit 200 million users in India. WhatsApp —…

Read More
Headlines 

Indian farmers shocked as suspected meteorite crashes into rice field

Football-sized object landed in paddy in Bihar state after fireball came down from sky A suspected meteorite crashed into the middle of a rice field in eastern India, authorities say. The object the size of a football landed with a thud in a paddy field in Madhubani district in Bihar state on Monday, startling farmers and sending up clouds of smoke. Kapil Ashok, the magistrate for Madhubani, 1,100 people were injured after a meteorite flared in the skies above the Russian city of Chelyabinsk. The meteor broke up before it…

Read More
Headlines 

At least 31 children in India killed by toxin in lychees

Dozens of children have died from acute encephalitis in the past 10 days, say health officials At least 31 children have died in northern India in the past 10 days from a brain disease believed to be linked to a toxic substance found in lychee fruit, health officials have said. The deaths were reported by two hospitals in Muzaffarpur in Bihar state, famed for it lush lychee orchards, officials said. The children all showed symptoms of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES), senior health official Ashok Kumar Singh said, adding most had…

Read More
Headlines 

Disability advocate: If I didn’t have my condition, I wouldn’t be as driven

Editor’s note: The UN estimates that around 17 million people born in India live outside its borders. The group is considered the world’s largest migrant population. From the NBA’s first Indian-origin player to the descendant of an indentured laborer, CNN spoke to a handful of people born to Indian parents who settled overseas. Her mother found a way of cradling her so she wouldn’t cry, but when others held her she’d scream in pain.

Read More