Monday, October 16, 2017

Mysterious withdrawals from #Yesbank salary account and the way the system is reacting to them

Posting one LIVE case shared by a friend on FB. Keeping her identity anonymous, sharing the experience. Key parts that are spinning off all kinds of questions and outrage in my head have been highlighted by me.

So I write this post more for financial literacy (or lack of thereof), than anything else. I was conflicted about sharing this but I'm hoping that I could get inputs from someone who has dealt with a similar situation, or not. Please feel free to PM if you have.

Facts: On Oct 9th, during the night sometime, ₹ X (a lot for a newly employed person) gets stolen from my #YesBank Salary account (₹ 19 was left behind). I am notified via SMSes, I freak out and have no idea what to do. I check my wallet and my Debit card is safely tucked in there. I call up the Yes Bank helpline, notify them of the same and get the card, phone banking and internet banking blocked. I learn that the transaction was actually an ATM withdrawal done in 3 parts, this is while my Card and I are sitting at home and lamenting over our loses (I suspect a cloned card). They say that it would take 7 working days to process this, no mention of a police complaint.

Thana 1 - I then go to my nearest thana at 10:30 in the night. They refuse to lodge a complaint and interrogate me; statements like "madam ne card ka number wagairah kisi ko de diya hoga and fir bhul gayi hongi", "cloning isn't possible nahi to aur case ate", go around. Sir, let's just wait for more such cases to happen. Finally, he says that my residence doesn't come under this thana and also I have no bank statement so no complaint can be registered. I go back home and sleep (or try at least).

Thana 2 - I have already visited the bank in the morning and acquired an account statement. We reach the thana, two inspectors discuss the case, I go through it again, they say impossible, I show them the card. After much discussion they tell me to lodge a complaint with RBI, [place name] within 72 hours. He also mentions that I need to go Thana 3 since my bank falls in that area.

I call RBI and the officer there tells me aisa nai hai, and that they don't follow the Thana rules but some random scheme that I couldn't care less about at that point. No simple yes, or no answers. Frustrated, I bang the phone.

Thana 3: This guy was nicer. He told me that I have the wrong thana. He makes two calls and redirects me to Thana number 4.

Thana 4: By the time I reach here, it's 6:30 pm, and this ordeal began at 9:30 am. I explain the scenario to them and refuse to leave until my complaint is registered. They finally hear me out and lodge the complaint.

Reflections/ musings: I realize that I have vented out quite a bit but for people still reading this,
1. I now understand why people just give and don't pursue a lot of things when it comes to dealing with such institutions, and this after just one day of running around; when I had help from a lot of people.
2. It can happen to anyone, I never thought I'd be one of them. I have a Master's degree and I had no idea how to go about this one. Need to educate myself more about personal finance and bank dealings.
3. What DIGITAL INDIA when this kind of sh't happens?

P.S. Please refrain from 'so sad', 'this is horrible', no I really appreciate it but it's been quite difficult as it is.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Interesting Links for September 2017

Interesting Links for September 2017
Sorry for.. oh heck let's assume that all the interesting links archived in a month will be shared in the next month's first or second week, ok?
Let's begin.
Black money: BJP gets 81% income from unknown sources, Congress 71%; why chase only common man?
>> In case the obvious didn't get through, this is HYPOCRISY defined. over 4-5ths of your main leadership is funded by black money and we're supposed to believe they'll sincerely crack down on black money.
>> And mind, black money in politics means you have NO idea WHOSE orders your leaders are following. It could be coming from anywhere.. even America's CIA can't be ruled out whose official budget contains funding subservient governments.
After Whatsapp says it shares user data like phone numbers, device details, here is what SC ordered it to do
... The Supreme Court on Friday asked instant messaging services WhatsApp to file a detailed affidavit stating the kind of user information it shares with its parent and social networking site Facebook and also to undertake that it will not share any consumers' data with a third entity.
"When they run past someone, joggers should always look back to make sure they are not about to be attacked," a spokesperson for the Leipzig Police said.
The Mayor of Leipzig criticized the police, saying that more cops on the streets was the answer. The notion of scaling back an immigration policy that invites in people from a culture which spawned something literally called "the rape game" wasn't part of the discussion.
>> This is Germany circa 2017.

Allowing mental illness diagnostics to get in the way of fixing personal accountability
Russia: Killer 'decapitates 18-month-old toddler and brandishes the girl's head in the street' after being released from a psychiatric hospital
>> A very disturbing incident, but I want to focus not on the horrid theatrics at the outcome but on the assumptions made by the authorities at the input that led to this sad situation:

... Six years ago, the knifeman had killed a female shop assistant in the same city, repeatedly stabbing her with a knife in a drunken rage. He was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and sent by a judge to a high security hospital for treatment. The man was released recently as 'healthy', it was reported.

>> and an earlier sentence that makes more sense now:
... The man's niece Tatiana (whose baby got killed) had earlier pleaded with the authorities not to release him from psychiatric hospital, fearing he remained a danger after he had killed a woman six years ago.

>> Let's designate the murdered baby's mother as the victim here, as she's understandably borne the most loss here. So the victim had WARNED the authorities AGAINST letting a dangerous criminal loose, whom they had believed, after having violently stabbed a woman to death 6 years ago, to be merely suffering from a mental illness and they thought it's the illness that made him do what he did and that he wasn't actually a murderer. With that diagnosis a murderer escaped a murder charge, got out of confinement in just 6 years by proving that his illness is "gone now", and has now visited untold horror upon his relative who KNEW he wasn't "innocent" by slaughtering her baby. Not to mention the authorities forced her to put up with having him where she and her children lived. Assuming that he knew about his niece's warnings, it is obvious this man's choice of next victim had a revenge element in it.

>> Who are the criminals here in the larger picture? It was the psychologists who made the diagnosis, and the judge(s) who decided on that basis that the earlier woman's killing should not be treated as a murder and so we don't need to hold the killer responsible for his actions.

>> Allowing mental illness diagnostics to get in the way of fixing personal accountability on what people do. That's what caused this tragedy. Will the people who were being so affectionate with the killer ever care to show some of that affection with the bereaved mother, who, I will repeat, had WARNED them against their judgement and who had to pay the ultimate price for it? 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Successful SSL certification using the free Let's Encrypt service

Securing a website with SSL certificate (https://) for free using Let's Encrypt service through wp-encrypt plugin in wordpress.

I found this tutorial online:

I followed it, and it worked! Our website is now :

Some loose ends to take care of :
1. Some of the image paths are still in http:// and have to be changed.
I'll recommend this plugin for that: , just replaced
http:// with https://

2. Then, some scripts I had embedded via <iframe> : had to change all the
http:// paths to https:// in them too.

Step Omission:
There was one step where it was confusing and it turned out I didn't
have to do it : in the wp-encrpyt plugin, they say see the help tab,
and there the second section instructs us to edit some apache config
file on our server, to edit some <VirtualHost> block. That part was
NOT NEEDED.. folks on GoDaddy hosts can skip that and proceed to next

Important points:
1. I didn't have to pay any money.
2. I didn't have to type in any commands into any server / SSH / etc.
3. There was no waiting period.

Present cost of SSL certs on GoDaddy:
183.25/mo + 366.59/mo renewal. Per year that would come to over Rs.4000/-.
And that's just for single website plans.

Next I'm going to try doing this on a site on bigrock, will write back
here if I encountered any differences in the process or any

Big thanks to Konark, Thej, Devdatta for their help, and I'm really
grateful to the people at Let's Encrypt for doing this for the little

Saturday, September 16, 2017

A response to the "after 70 years of corruption.." pat reply being xeroxed everywhere

Keeping in mind the 70 years of corruption, we wanted India to vote
OUT of the Cong+BJP combined corrupt regime, recognising that only
concrete steps against entrenched corruption and not grandiose
promises will fix the problems.

But folks were too impatient, they wanted instant solutions. The
candidate who ultimately won promised instant solution, without giving
ANY logical plan of action to how (and a few jhumlas). If nothing
else, at least AAP had some concrete steps laid out like a real
Lokpal, decentralization of finances to citizen-level, right to
recall, increasing judge numbers, due process in land acquisition etc.

BJP only said something to the effect of "we will deliver proper
governance" without any details of a single legislation or reform.. I
read their 2014 Manifesto.

People fell for the one-liner because of their impatience.

Three years later, please tell, exactly how many big-ticket
universally known corrupt politicians have been JAILED since the PM
took office? Does a single one have any serious case proceeding
against them in any court of law? Forget surviving, they are thriving!
Do you think they will be all magically brought to justice one night
by an 8pm announcement?

Every UPA-era scam's details are out in public, many are continuing to
this day with no action taken. Do you seriously believe corruption in
India will be removed in another 700 years forget 70 if exactly
NOTHING is done? Do you honestly believe corruption can be removed
without any action against the entrenched corrupt?

The short-term greed for instant fixes has brought us to a NEVER-fix
situation because we put in power those whose secret funders are the
ones we want to see locked up .

(Yes, I know you didn't understand the above line. Read it again, slowly.)

And some of those fooled people now have the hypocrisy of telling your
and my children that they will have to wait 70 more years to get a
decent life in this country.


There was a school-time proverb : "Haste makes waste". In every way
imaginable, The PM's supporters are running away from what it means,
and pretending to school others about it to distract from their folly.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Something about a child abuse crime ring

Warning: Reading this article might ruin your day. But if you do start on it, I request you to follow it through to the end.
The World of Mind Control Through the Eyes of an Artist with 13 Alter Personas

I've seen enough material from other sources that corroborates this, to say that there is definitely something here. The site too has related links in the end.

To find something constructive to keep my feet on (as opposed to the feeling of falling into an endless abyss that engulfs me whenever I read/see about these horrors of our world), this reminds me that yes, there is still much to do, and there is just case for defending the freedom of speech against the whole fake-news-threat-fakery being passed around these days in a bid to prevent this kind of information being leaked to the masses. And it also confirms that we are dealing with some form of an influencial elite ruling from the shadows, and it's not just class war where everyone's pitted against everyone else.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

A marathi joke-story on demonetization

Marathi story forwarded on some whatsapp groups:

काचेवर माशी बसली होती, माशी मारण्यासाठी एका मुलाने दगड मारला , माशी तर उडून गेली, काच मात्र फुटली. एक चिलट मात्र मेले. मुलाने आणि मित्रांनी चिलट मारणे हे कसे आवश्यक होते हे तारस्वरात सांगायला सुरूवात केली. मुलाचे युक्तिवाद होते १) माझा उद्देश चांगला नव्हता का? २) मी प्रयत्नच करू नये का? ३) एक चिलट मेल्यामुळे आता दहा नवी चिलटे जन्म घेणार नाहीत हा लाॅंगटर्म फायदा नाही का? ४) माशी खोली बाहेर उडून गेली की नाही ? ५) माश्या लपतात त्या जागा कळल्या आता त्या जागांवर मी आणि माझे मित्र नजर ठेवू ६) शेजारचे लोक माश्या सोडायचे, पण आता ही माशी घाबरली असल्यामुळ त्या इकडे येणार नाहीत. ७) काच फुटली असे सांगणारे सर्वजण माशी, चिलट यांचे समर्थक आहेत. ८) ७० वर्ष कोणी काच का मजबूत केली नाही. ९) माशी मारण्याची हिंमत फक्त माझ्याकडेच आहे. मुलाचे कुटुंबिय आता मुलगा कसा कर्तृत्ववान आहे हे ढोल बडवून सांगत आहेत.

*याचा नोटबंदीशी काहीही संबंध जोडू नये*

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Haste makes Waste (regd Demonetisation)

Haste makes Waste:
Maybe it's time to pay a little more attention to this age-old proverb?
The Final Nail in the Demonetisation Coffin

"Given this, instead of destroying black money held in the form of
cash, demonetisation seems to have become a legal money laundering
scheme, where people with black money have found ingenious ways to
deposit it into the banking system. So, the first objective of
demonetisation of eliminating black money has not been achieved. " is a defamation site

Just putting in a voice. Practically any whistle-blowing thing you
look up on a normal search engine, this site comes in the top 5 or 3
results. And every single time their only goal is to dismiss anything
and everything that disagrees with what the status quo says, as
conspiracy theory. And I've consistently found them indulging in
nothing but defamation. Just the language itself has the innuendo and
the attitude loaded into it.. there is nothing unbiased about it. In
these times when what has been long-held to be true is quickly
unravelling and we're finding out how the status quo has been so wrong
about so many things, it doesn't make sense to be blindly supporting
them and to be dismissing any and every dissenting opinion as a
conspiracy theory. They claim to be anti-conservative but as of today
it's them who are the conservatives.

Other references:

Friday, September 1, 2017

Rehearsal in school for corporate life?

Yet another joke shared over whatsapp, yet another question arising from it to ponder over :

Life is Same!!!

20 years back - School bag.
Today                - Office bag.

20 years back - Scared of Teachers and exams.
Today               - Scared of Bosses and targets.

20 years back - Wanting to be class topper.
              Today  - Wanting to be 'Employee of the month'.

20 years back - Quarterly exams.
Today               - Quarterly results.

20 years back - Annual exams.
Today              - Annual appraisals.

20 years back - Pocket money.
Today               - Salary.

20 years back - Running after grades and prize cups.
Today               - Running after incentives and promotions.

20 years back - Craving for the latest toy in the market.
Today               - Craving for the latest gadget in the market

20 years back - Crush on class mate.
Today              - Crush on colleague.

20 years back - Fruity.
Today              - Whisky.

So essentially nothing has changed except our Age....!!😝😝

-- so would that indicate that the former is to get people used to the latter? :D

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Delhi: What was the LG office was blocking all this time

Video: Delhi provides a ray of hope, 26 Aug 2017
Shows significant education and healthcare reforms taking place in Delhi under AAP government.

Link to the embedded video :

So THAT''s what they were fighting about? Now we know what all the LG office was BLOCKING from happening during all those over-publicized standoffs. The media says AAP is continuously quarrelling with Centre and has nothing positive to do, but repeatedly fails to mention exactly WHAT they were fighting for : For getting vital education, healthcare and other reforms approved for their citizens (which is something positive, duh!). If there are some things in life worth fighting for, then THIS certainly qualifies. Why ridicule a valid fight? Shouldn't the media have been ridiculing the LG's office and their direct boss the Centre for continuously stonewalling and cancelling these vital reforms, for repeatedly transferring key IAS personnel implementing these reforms to places like Andamans without advance notice or explanation?

And then comes the obvious question : Why was is (they're still at it! See bottom of the post for latest) Central govt BLOCKING all these nice things from happening? Instead, having all the other Union Territories under their full control, why hasn't Modi Sarkar already delivered DOUBLE over there of whatever AAP is achieving in Delhi? No AAP-controlled or Congress-controlled LG offices to fight over there. Its been over three years. Are we seeing ANY of these vital reforms happening in the remaining Union Territories of India, or the other BJP ruled states where they came to power on Modi's wave? Granted that it may take time, but there are always clear starting steps that can be proven, like executive orders, budget allocations etc. Is there any evidence of drastic reforms underway? Shouldn't the Centre be making at least the other UT's as examples of good governance for the States to follow? Why is an embattled and "perennially in crisis" state government, having ZERO control over police, land and several vital sectors, having to do the Centre's job for them?

Reference: from an year ago:
Shows the glaring differences between what actually happened at a press conference vs what the media said. The man is politely and coherently requesting for approval for reforms like teacher salary increase which directly has to do with the outcomes in the video you saw at the top of this post; requesting for more co-operation from the LG office in matters like transfer of key IAS officers. And the media said he is "infuriated at", "slamming", "not co-operating", "abrasive", "negative" etc. This wasn't convenient misreporting, it was outright lying by the media.

This and dozens of incidents like this have cumulatively formed a FAKE image of an aggressive and quarrelsome and negative AAP govt, while all the time the fights and the negativity were being started by the Centre. Who should we be more wary of : the folks starting the fights or the folks the fights are being foisted upon? If they say something to defend a legitimate reform then why do we immediately attack them? Would we prefer it if the Delhi govt had just bent over and cancelled all these vital reforms from happening? Would you prefer it if the public schools were still rotting in filth the way they had been in the years preceding rather than having proper infrastructure, if the children kept failing their exams and failing at reading, if summer camps for govt school kids never happened, if the common person couldn't get vital healthcare services for free or low cost at private sector standards? If not, then why do we so enthusiastically attack someone trying to make it happen? Might this be part of the slave mentality or the crabs-in-the-barrel mentality : na khud aagey badhengey, na kissi aur ko badhne dengey? From what all I've seen in the past 3 years, this definitely seems to be the LG office's mentality.

Addendum : The LG Office is blocking the creation of more Mohalla Clinics right NOW (As of Aug 2017), by scurrying a file to and fro and neither forwarding nor rejecting it (stalling : a repeated tactic we've seen all along which again usually never gets covered by the media). While citizen surveys have overwhelmingly given thumbs-up to Mohalla Clinics, LG is paying more heed to opposition politicians' thumbs-down. See :

Another link:

Saturday, August 19, 2017

QGIS Georeferencer : recommendation for transformation type

Just making a note on a geo-referencing task I was doing with QGIS.

I had an outer boundary shape of a village, and had to geo-reference a PDF map of that village which has some internal data that I wanted. (won't go into more details here, but see this and this to get your shape and map.)

And chose the "Polynomial 2" tranformation type.

My georeferencing points (GCP) were points along the outer boundary of the village only : nothing from inside / center.

Ran the georeferencer : it got done instantly, and lo and behold, the image/raster map appeared perfectly on my shapefile map. It's a perfect fit, and the original map doesn't have any major distortions.. it has a slight rotation.

The output .TIF file is also much smaller than what I've had earlier : only 6.5MB compared to 405MB for an earlier run.

Previously based on some other article I had been using the setting "thin plate spline". It was extremely slow and created very distorted outputs and much larger .tif's . So for my kind of task (outer boundaries pinning), the "Polynomial 2" transformation has proved to be much better on all accounts.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Interesting Links for July 2017

Interesting Links for July 2017
Was copying some new links into this note and just realized that dude, we're in August now and I haven't published the July'17 links yet! So here, and apologies for some of the last links being from 'the future' :P

There's something new : I'm finally able to properly share the videos from independent media that I've been seeing! I made a script where I'm able to draw out a youtube link's title, publisher and date. You can use it to "make-human-friendly" your youtube links too :

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Are your interests and their interests really the same?

You wanted a leader that doesn't get bogged down by what others say,
that pushes ahead, come what may, and does his own thing. Your
assumption all this time has been that his own thing is the same as
your own thing.

That could have been so, had his rise not been actively aided by your
enemies. But they were involved, right from the beginning.

His own thing never was same as your own thing.

It isn't.

It never will be.

You put a leader into power who will do not his own thing, but the
bidding of those who majorly funded and supported him. His interests
will co-incide not with your interests, but their interests. And they
will run contrary to your interests, your safety, your family's

You felt there was no other way, because the people in the middle were
messing everything up and something had to be done.

You intentions may be noble, but the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

What has happened instead is that those people in the middle now no
longer need to worry about their real no.1 threat : you and others
like you getting in their way. They STILL have their control, and
their power has only gone up by bringing in a leadership that silences
the one thing that could have checked the middle people : the bottom
rung, people like yourself.

The shortcut of just bringing in someone at the top who won't get
swayed : only results in that person being unable to get swayed in the
good direction by you. It's not a good shortcut because it does not
lead you to your destination; it only leads you backwards.

There are other ways to strengthen your voice and disempower those
pesky people in the middle who are messing up everything.

Disclaimer : This is a work of imagination. No association to real
life people. If something IS coming up in your head, then that's just
your business.

sharing a note on a home buying scam happening in India

Saw this on FB, re-posting it here as backup, and for search engine

By Sandeep Jain:

Great Indian Banking Scam:

I want to bring attention to a disturbing nationwide organised scam
that you are a familiar with, but most don't quite understand the
"fraud" part of it. And like some of my answers do, it may ruffle some
feathers. But truth must be told. Here it is:

Do these pictures seem familiar to you? Go to the outskirts of any
major city in India, (for example take Noida & Gurgaon which are on
the outskirts of Delhi), you see miles & miles of semi built
structures that just stay dead still & never get completed. All these
buildings started in different years, but surprisingly, they all face
"financial trouble" just after the basic structure is built. Why don't
we see buildings that stop in-between, say after 4 floor or 8 floors?

The answer is an organised scam played by the state governments,
builders, banks & accounting bodies. This is how it works -

The builders sell you construction linked plan. You assume that it's a
fair plan as the builder will charge money as and when the
construction progresses and it is in builder's interest to complete
the project with speed. Looks fair for all. This is where the catch
is! The so called "construction linked plan" is a sham designed by the
agencies listed above, backed fully by the government and banks. Let's
look at the reasons:

What is the scam here ? The payment plan is designed in a way that you
have to pay 90% of the price of flat "at the laying of the top floor
of the building". By this time the builder has spent only 50% of the
project cost. Most of the money is needed later in the finishing work
- electrical wiring, plumbing, flooring, paints, lifts / elevators,
external work, parking, basements, government permissions for water,
sewage, power, etc.

You get the logic here. Now the builder is sitting on neat 40% profit
(90% - 50%) and all that he is left to "earn" from you is 10%. Why
would he spend another 30% money just to recover 10% from you? He
stops work right here!

You're thinking — he should not stop because there is a timeline to
deliver the project. But wait, what if he misses the deadline of
delivery? There must be some penalty, right? Check the agreement - ah
well,……… keep searching! So if developer delays the project, there is
no penalty due on his part (or at best its princely sum of Rs 5 per sq
feet per month…. which comes to a meager 1% interest!).

But if you delay his payment, interest charged is 12% to 18%. Ever
heard of one sided agreements? Which business would not seize this
opportunity to "borrow" free money without interest?

Why did the banks & RBI support it The befitting supporting actor
award here goes to the banks & RBI.

They lend "you" the money on "your" credit report. Banks don't finance
the builders for land purchase. They are also very shy on financing
the builders for construction(rates are more than 15% to 18%). But
wait, consumers can always borrow at 10% & "pay" the builder. So
essentially, the consumer is "financing the builder" in the name of
"purchasing the apartment".

Oh, did I tell you the best part? This money is without any interest
for the builder as we see above. So a developer to whom no bank lends
money below 18% and that too is seen very risky, can "get easy finance
from the same banks" at 0% interest rate, all in the name of

While RBI could have set this right just by changing the construction
linked payment schedule through banks, it chose to sit with eyes shut,
while the banks & builders continue to fleece customers.

Where did the money go ? Well, democracy is an expensive way to run
governments, especially in developing countries. Every state
government has been enjoying the party with builders & this was a
"legal" way to pull huge credit money from the banking system on the
books of the "reasonably wealthy middle class" who was sold the idea
of buying a house as it "appreciates forever" with tax breaks.

Builders diverted money to the political parties to get further favors
on land & permits. Secondly, the builder has used this surplus 40%
"profits" to buy new land parcels so as to launch more projects &
collect even more surplus interest free money.

The land prices were assumed to be appreciating forever as more and
more money was being pumped out of the banks. The music has to stop
some day.

What about the consumers? The "middle class" consumer will continue to
pay his monthly installment to banks, while their money has been
siphoned off by the builders, political parties, government officials
and the banks.

The apartment that was sold as 40 lacs will eventually cost 60 to 70
lacs considering the delayed possession, not to mention some cases
where money is lost forever.

You dare not default since you are just a retail consumer. Don't dare
to become an industrialist who can default & live happily ever after.

State governments are all hands in, trying to keep existing projects
out of RERA. Even if these are included, try fighting the legal battle
to get decision from regulator first. Then move to Appellate Tribunal
(yes, this comes before the High court), then the High Court & finally
Supreme Court. Can you hold till 20 years or rather take the apartment
on builder's terms whenever he feels like offering the same to you?

Talk of organised banking loot by the government, this is it. If it
feels like your story also, you're not alone. But please never assume
that property prices don't fall. Staying on rent is not that bad. And
don't you ever buy into the hype !

Monday, July 24, 2017

Let's put the textbooks on GitHub and collaboratively transform them there

My Letter to Hon'ble HRD Minister/Chairman (NCERT) Prakash Javadekar today
- Manish Sisodiya, June 27 2017

Comment posted:

Respected Sir, suggesting an idea from the IT world : is a global platform for open sharing of programs and also data. It has excellent mechanisms by which people can copy over a project (fork), make the changes they want to, and then start a process called "pull request" to re-integrate these changes back into the original. All changes are meticulously tracked. There is also a rich discussion system where there can be elaborate discussion on the proposed changes. Please upload the NCERT textbooks' content (text, images, formatting) to GitHub and let's have an open sourced way of transforming these books to make them much better suited for our kids! If we have word file versions of the textbooks then it's very easy to get the content online. I'll be glad to help in setting this up. Reach me on [censored] -- Respectfully Yours, Nikhil, Pune

Maharashtra’s open school to start from 2018.. and connection with a PIL filed by open learners' guardians

Crossposting from :

The state of Maharashtra has recently announced starting its Open School and this could not get more awesome! The National Institute of Open Schooling (NIOS), a central government body, has existed before unschooling and home schooling were cool. But now we have our own state run Open School to design and implement a more relevant and context based curriculum that focusses on skill development!

In July 2015, some of us had filed a PIL with the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court. It was regarding amendments in the modus operandi of the Maharashtra State Government w.r.t. the Right To Education Act and the mandate to attend 'schools' to impart basic education for kids belonging to the age group of 6 to 14 years. We had also demanded the formation of a state level Open School, as directed by the NIOS.

We engaged with the system to recognize open learning as an alternative means to education. This was applicable in various scenarios such as with kids of migrant labour, tribals, children below the poverty line, home schoolers, and open learners. We read and understood the Ground Rules (GR) for a survey of out-of-school students, worked in tandem with the Municipal Corporations, and even went out to survey with the government staff and submitted our findings. Following the survey, some of us continued to write to the Ministry of Education and Hon. Governor of Maharashtra.

It all has started to yield fruitful results and education is only going to get exciting from here!
Maharashtra's open school to start from 2018

A recent AAP newsletter

Sharing because you don't get to see anything on this on mainstream media, do you?
Newsletter | June 2017

Let's Build the Future Together

Arvind Kejriwal's speech at Delhi State Office Bearer's Convention on May 21

When we were contesting the elections in 2015, we knew that to change the lives of ordinary citizens in Delhi it was essential to improve government schools. It was essential that every child had access to high quality education irrespective of whether they were rich or poor. But I have to honestly admit that when I became CM in February 2015, I did not know how we would do this.

Today, two years later, I can say with great pride and confidence that a remarkable transformation has taken place in the government schools of Delhi. This is nothing short of an education revolution and the results show it. Last week, we celebrated the performance of Delhi's government schools which achieved a pass percentage of 88.3% in CBSE Class 12 results – a clear 6% higher than all CBSE schools nationally and substantially higher than Delhi's private schools. For two years now, government schools have performed better than private schools in Delhi. Last week, we also celebrated the achievement of 372 students from Delhi's government schools who cleared IIT-JEE examinations this year – a 700% rise over last year.

There is so much poverty in our city and our country. There is only one solution to this and that is high quality education. If every child from a deprived background gets good education, then within one generation, every family can pull itself out of poverty. This is the change that our nation needs because only an educated nation can become a developed nation.

AAP government's achievements in education, health and several other areas are also the achievement of every single volunteer and supporter who has sacrificed immensely to make AAP what it is today. Our work has only begun and as we march forward to deliver on the dreams and aspirations of crores of people, we ask for your support and participation in every single step. Beginning with this monthly newsletter series, we will communicate regularly and directly with you and we promise to listen carefully to what you have to say. Start today by making a small contribution to AAP to build the India of our dreams.

Donate ₹500 or More Now to AAP to Build the Future Together
AAP MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj demonstrates 'EVM Tampering' in Delhi Assembly


AAP's Stance on EVMs


The sanctity of the election process is the bedrock of Indian democracy. Over the last few years, and especially in recent months, the faith in this process has been shaken due to serious allegations of tampering the EVMs.   Read More »


AAP in Striking Distance of National Party Status


The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) may have suffered defeat in the just concluded state assembly elections, yet it is within striking distance of the elite club of national parties—with seven members..  Read More »

AAP in Delhi


Delhi Government's Historic Outcome Budget


Our government believes that the relationship between a government and its citizens is nothing short of a sacred contract. A contract to deliver the best possible outcomes and benefits to society...  Read More »


Mera Booth Sabse Majboot campaign launched in Delhi

The Delhi unit of the Aam Aadmi Party held a state convention on 21st May in the presence of National Convener Arvind Kejriwal and newly appointed Delhi Convener Gopal Rai. During this convention, the party announced...  Read More »


Understanding Delhi's Education Revolution


When the Aam Aadmi Party formed the government in Delhi in 2015, we knew we had inherited a public school system that was in shambles. What we did not know was how deep the rot ran. Subject to decades of neglect and intentional subversion by... Read More »


Can AAP's insurgent government deliver the universal healthcare holy grail?

In a first such experiment in India, 150 mohalla clinics have been set up in Delhi and 850 more will come up by year-end. How is Arvind Kejriwal's prescription working?  Read More »

AAP in Punjab


AAP's 'Punjab Yatra' connects with people before Assembly session

The Aam Aadmi Party launched the 'Punjab Yatra' from 1st May onwards to consult the people of the state on the issues they want...  Read More »


Arvind Kejriwal makes first trip to Punjab post elections

As National Convener Arvind Kejriwal visits the Golden Temple in Amritsar, the party unites to take on the corrupt government of the ruling Congress party...  Read More »

In The News


The Media Wants to Mainstream Kejriwal
The Hoot  |  28 April 2017

The Anomalous Rise of Mr Kejriwal
The Dawn  |  18 April 2017 

CBSE 12th result 2017: Govt schools take 9% lead over private institutions
The Times of India  |  29 May 2017

Over 700% Rise in Cracking JEE by Delhi Govt School Students
The Pioneer  |  24 May 2017

Summer camps begin in over 1,000 govt schools
The Hindu  |  12 May 2017

At leadership camp, Delhi government school students discover their potential
Indian Express  | 23 May 2017

Real estate, liquor out of GST as influential people run them: Manish Sisodia
Indian Express  |  29 May 2017

CM Arvind Kejriwal promises to make Delhi mosquito-free
Financial Express | 13 May 2017

Kapil Mishra's Comedy Show
Firstpost  |  19 May 2017

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Breaking heart vs wrecking life

Dear males, esp the blokes in their 30s and up, esp the blokes who do have a life partner.

Standard response when a girl way too younger than you approaches you and reveals that she is attracted to you:

I think I'm better off breaking your heart right now than wrecking your life later.

And mind, i'm not asking the ones stuck in loveless situations to not seek love outside. Please seek it in grown up women rather than taking advantage of a young girl's immaturity. All youth will have crushes; that gives you no license to mess with them. If you are your age then exercise the maturity and restraint appropriate to it.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Open data mashup: 2017-22 Pune wards map and corporators

Hi Friends,

Just sharing one outcome of some work on open data:

Friends at CEE took the PDF released by PMC that listed the newly
elected corporators for 2017-22, and made a proper excel table of it.
I combined it with the new wards map of Pune (which I had digitized
earlier), and now you can see exactly which areas in Pune have which
corporators representing them:

What is your home's ward/prahag number? Who are the people
representing your neighborhood ?

The same map also contains the data for the previous wards layout and
2012-17 corporators! Click the "visible layers" at top right and turn
off the 2017-22 layer to be able to see that, with photos! (new
corporators photos coming soon.. get in touch if you want to help with
that!) So here you can see at the same place both present and past
elected representatives of Pune. This is what we mean by
applying/visualizing open data. There are 4 sets of open public data
working in combination here : 2 maps and 2 tables.

There are many such projects awaiting your involvement, and you too
can bring in similar projects that you are working on / want to work
on. Jump in!

Saturday, June 10, 2017

RT's propaganda?

Here's an explanation on the conundrum about stuff broadcasted on RT,
on the question of russian propaganda, funding vis-a-vis the content
of many of the shows on their international news channel, RT. (like
Abby Martin, Lee Camp etc)

There is an argument that since it's funded by Russia, it must be
carrying their lies.

Given the present situation of the world and the lies about it being
told to us by the western-dominated mainstream media,

The most effective and successful and powerful propaganda on Russia's part,

Would be to give a platform to the truth.

And that is actually ridiculously easier than contriving false
narratives. They simply need to get a good collection of people on
board and let them do and say whatever they want, without the
hawk-like monitoring of higher-ups that is the everyday reality of
western news channel studios. There is no need of spending time and
resources on planning narratives, misrepresenting events and
synchronizing all the channels/shows to make sure they repeat the same

This is precisely why there's been moments recorded of RT where the
news anchor makes some anti-RT or anti-Russia declaration, publicly
resigns and walks off, etc. The reason why you don't see that kind of
stuff on say CNN is because the latter's every second is absolutely
controlled to never get to the point that something like that would
ever happen. The reason why you do see it on RT, is because they
simply don't bother doing the kind of over--regulating that western
media and their repeaters do.

Simply letting people speak their mind is actually the best and most
powerful propaganda that the Russian leadership can do to further
their best interests, under the present world climate.

Truth-telling can be a propaganda tactic with nothing evil about it,
and can be sufficient to counter the western media's propaganda.

Abby Martin Responds to Exploitation by NY Times

Gift Economy

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