Tag Archives: India

Bye Bye Credit Cards

For as long as I have had a career, I have lived off of credit cards. I handled my expenses using these cards and paid it back at the end of the month. Using these cards, I also purchased things that I couldn’t afford and paid the money back over many months. At one point of time, I had up to 4 credit cards in my wallet, all maxed out.

Credit Cards
Credit Cards, PC: Business Insider

With my recent move and a long overdue financial reset, I decided to get rid of credit cards from my life once and for all. I was anyways going to get rid of my Indian cards, but I also decided not to get any in Thailand.

At first it was scary and I almost ended up applying for one during a weak moment but eventually pulled through. Now it has been more than a month without a credit card and I couldn’t be happier. For the first time in my life, I am actually sticking to my budget goals.

I hope I am able to stave off the temptation and maintain this going forward.

The Pathetic State of Education in India

Courtesy: http://asiancorrespondent.com

Growing up, I have witnessed a few things which have made me question the quality of education in this country; especially Primary and Secondary education.

In short, schools in India generally suck. They are more profit-making machines rather than a place to impart quality education to students. Moreover, the quality of teachers, especially in the Primary and Secondary education scene is very low.

I have studied in almost 9 schools from Class I to Class XII. I can say without doubt that most teachers did not teach for the joy of teaching, but rather to earn money. There’s no harm in that, apart from the fact that they are still expected to be good at their jobs; which mostly they are not.

One subject which I have seen teachers mostly suck at, is English. Apart from 2 teachers in my entire school life, none of the English teachers I have come across were good at their jobs. I have found myself arguing with my English teachers many times when I have felt that what they were saying is wrong. After a while, I realized that arguing is no use, as the teachers here, far from being open minded and appreciating feedback actually had huge egoes, which I hurt when I corrected them.

Unlike subjects like Science and Maths, if you learn languages incorrectly at a young age, you are unlikely to improve later on; you’ll be stuck with it for life. If there’s one teacher who doesn’t know proper English teaching a class of 50, he/she will produce 50 people who don’t know proper English later on in life.

This problem is not isolated to English/Hindi and other language subjects. Most teachers don’t know what they are doing and write things on the blackboard directly from the textbook or old notes and expect their students not to question what they are writing.

Also, I have recently seen students being told to take off their shoes outside the computer room, as their shoes might have “viruses” which would infect the computers. Also, a textbook as recent as 2010 still listed Pluto as a planet.

Why is the state of Education here so bad, when considering that the schooling here is much more expensive than the developed countries? The answer is “Jugaad”.

Indians have a long standing habit of relying on “Jugaad”, which is simply a way to get something done using means other than those which are proper. Mostly this would involve a monetary transaction, or pulling strings with someone high up in the system.

I have seen people I know graduate from full time B.Ed courses without attending a single class. These same people get jobs at nice schools using the same “Jugaad” technique; when it is clear that no self-respecting interviewer would have even interviewed them for more than 5 minutes. Also, these people don’t know basic English.

All this is very frustrating and makes me very angry; especially because I don’t know what I can do about it.

Indian mass media sucks

The mass media in this country sucks. It really does big time.

Have been regularly reading the newspaper for around 10 years now. Every morning (afternoon now) when I wake up and look at the newspaper, I see the front page covered with negative content. Every single day, without fail. It’s either murder, bribery, rape, match fixing or shit about the city you’re living in. These articles are accompanied by vivid images of dead bodies, slums, people hiding their faces in shame, puddles filled with stagnant water, potholes left uncovered, stadiums with rubble around them.

Now I start thinking – Is the world I’m living in really so bad? I thought about it and the answer is no.

The reason the newspaper is like this is because Indians love misery. Perhaps because it makes them take their mind off the shit in their own life. The media is just doing their job by feeding off the desire for misery in people’s lives.

I’ve often noticed how much satisfaction people get when reading such articles. These moments are always accompanied by comments like “I told you so” or “This country will get nowhere” or the more frequent “Corrupt Bastards”

When Delhi Metro opens a new line, or when an Indian wins some award or there’s something positive happening in the country, such content is always on page 2.

They showed us how the roof of  Terminal 1D of Indira Gandhi International Airport fell of during rain and storm. It was on page 1 for days. What they didn’t show was how Terminal 3 is best in the country, is the 8th largest Airport Terminal in the world and cities like Kolkata will never see anything like it in a decade, because they’re too busy decorating their airport with communist flags.

They showed us when a Delhi metro construction girder fell off killing many people; how the metro is evil. That is unfortunate and sad. However, they didn’t show that the rest of the country has nothing like it, and we Delhi guys love it.

I have stopped taking the newspaper seriously; I tell myself that its some evil propaganda to suck the happiness out of us and turn us into zombies.  

And this is just the print media. Television news channels are so full of bullshit (in a hilarious way though) that it deserves a separate post.