India Today October 4, 2021

India Today is the leading news magazine and most widely read publication in India. The magazine’s leadership is unquestioned, so much so that India Today is what Indian journalism is judged by, for its integrity and ability to bring unbiased and incisive perspective to arguably the most dynamic, yet perplexing, region in the world. Breaking news and shaping opinion, it is now a household name and the flagship brand of India’s leading multidimensional media group. Additionally, the weekly brings with it a range supplements like Women, Home, Aspire, Spice and Simply which focus on style, health, education, fashion, etc. and Indian cities.

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52 Issues

in this issue

3 min
from the editor-in-chief

Happiness is a many-splendoured thing. It is different for everyone and impossible to define. If you ask spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, he will tell you, “Happiness is just an idea when you don’t know it, and you are it when you know it.” It is obviously a state of mind with a complete absence of negative emotions, which leaves a person feeling positive or relaxed. Ask a psychologist, and they will tell you that happiness has two aspects: the hedonistic one, where you feel pleasure and enjoyment but which by its very nature is fleeting; and the eudemonic one, which equates happiness with a meaningful life that is full of positive relations with people and the environment. It would be unusual for anyone to be constantly happy as…

5 min
can channi deliver?

On the morning of September 20, Charanjit Singh Channi, 58, was sworn in as the 17th chief minister of Punjab, in the process making history as the first Dalit to occ upy the chair. He took oath along with two deputy CMs, prominent Jat Sikh leader Sukhjinder Randhawa and Om Prakash Soni, an upper caste Hindu businessman. It’s a big gamble the Congress is taking, trying to alter caste equations in the state. Since the 1966 state reorganisation, Punjab has always had a chief minister from the dominant Jat Sikh community (with the exception of Giani Zail Singh, an OBC Ramgarhia Sikh), and Channi’s big challenge will be to prove to the Dalit community that the Congress didn’t pick him just as a nightwatchman. It won’t be easy. Even before he…

1 min
costly reboot

On September 13, BJP chose the relatively unknown Bhupendra Patel as Gujarat chief minister, and went on to name 21 first-timers in a cabinet of 24 ministers. While the party hopes to beat anti-incumbency with this daring overhaul barely months ahead of the 2022 assembly election, it is also proving to be a nightmare for the state government’s publicity department, which has to trash all the publicity material—hoardings, calendars and posters—created for former chief minister Vijay Rupani, his deputy Nitin Patel and the old cabinet. It’s still calculating costs for a new mega publicity drive to introduce Patel and his new cabinet to the voters. The costs, officials believe, will be steep. Changing governments in an election year clearly isn’t cheap.…

1 min
calendar art

Former IAS officer Arvind Kumar Sharma made a dramatic entry into Uttar Pradesh politics this January when he was sworn in as an MLC. After briefly slipping into the background, Sharma made news again recently for distributing calendars in UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath’s home district Gorakhpur. This was not good publicity, though, since local BJP leaders were quick to point out that the calendars only had photos of Sharma with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and none of Adityanath. Sharma has worked with Modi often in the past two decades—first during the latter’s time as Gujarat CM and then as PM. His loyalties are well known.…

5 min
betting on newbies

On September 12, when Prime Minister Narendra Modi chose first-time MLA Bhupendra Patel to lead Gujarat, little did anyone expect that the new chief minister would also have a nearly all-new cabinet. As expected, the thorough overhaul left stalwarts like Nitin Patel, Saurabh Patel and Pradeepsinh Jadeja furious at being dropped and led to an unprecedented scenario where the Gujarat Raj Bhavan had to postpone the swearing-in ceremony of the new council of ministers by a day, to September 16. Barring three, all ministers, including the CM, have no previous experience of governance. In 2001, too, the party had taken a big gamble on an inexperienced Narendra Modi and made him chief minister in the wake of the devastating Bhuj earthquake that year. That gamble paid off handsomely for the party—and…

4 min
assam’s wave of worry

In July this year, a celebrated author living in Guwahati reported a sexual assault attempt by her domestic help. She’d suffered multiple injuries before managing to break free and reporting the alleged assault to the police. The suspect was promptly arrested, and the police honoured her request to keep the incident away from the media glare, though it made its way to an unwanted statistic in the state. Assam, which many believe to be relatively safe for women, has surprisingly reported the highest crime rate against women for a fourth consecutive year, according to the NCRB (National Crime Records Bureau). The state accounts for 2.6 per cent of India’s population but its share in total crimes against women in the country was 7 per cent, says the NCRB’s Crime in India…