Recommended Sunday Reading–January 1, 2017
The best Sunday reads
From being down and out in Paris to being a best selling author. Says the man who changed the author’s life : “Why are only certain celebrities or those who claim to be, politicians, stars of television, radio, cinema, allowed to reveal their past, write or have their autobiography edited? Do those who are anonymous not have something interesting to say? He [Roughol] teaches me more than I offer him.” In The Guardian.
A Roman calendar had only 10 months, March 1 being the start of the year. Under the Popes, Christmas Day, December 25, was made the first day of the year. Then Easter, March 25, was given the honour. Finally, in 1582, the Gregorian calendar came into vogue with January 1 restored to its earlier glory. In New Indian Express.
The genius solution, in fact the silver bullet, to our problems of transportation, was the bullet train. The bullet train will carry Gujaratis from Ahmedabad to Mumbai and back. This 500-kilometre route is already connected by the Golden Quadrilateral highway network, 10 daily flights and about 200 weekly trains. There is actually no demand from Gujaratis for a bullet train as such. In November, the Indore Patna Express slid off the track, killing 146 Indians, a number that might have been reduced if its old coaches had been replaced.
The ₹99,000 crore Modi is paying Japan for this bauble can be put in perspective by the ₹33,000 crore the Union government spends annually on health. Readers may also be interested to know that the Bharatiya Janata Party governments on taking power in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh shut down their state bus transport corporations because they did not turn a profit. The poor can make their own arrangements. In The Telegraph.
“The grocery shops in the market have also been very severely hit. We [used to] have an annual turnover of almost ₹5 crores from the grocery stores [before demonetisation], just by selling groceries. The Mazdoor Kisan Kirana Store it is called, and as far as that is concerned, sales have plummeted. The sales have plummeted to half or maybe even a little less than that. These are shops that should run even in this situation of a cash crunch.” In The Caravan.
While she admits she was at the heart of the Nazi propaganda machine, with her tasks including massaging downwards statistics about fallen soldiers, as well as exaggerating the number of rapes of German women by the Red Army, she describes it, somewhat bizarrely, as “just another job”. In The Guardian.