Open Thread – Renewal of Covid Restrictions in India

Let the chats begin. Feel free to discuss other things here. As Razib hasn’t added an Open Thread I thought I should

What’s the latest on Omicron ? My amateurish take below.


What makes SARS-CoV-2 dangerous is it’s a Upper+Lower Respiratory track infection. Upper track causes high infectivity and lower track causes higher severity (compared to seasonal colds). Looks like Omicron is more Upper track than Lower track (unlike Alpha and Delta). That maybe one of the reasons (other than vaccinations and pre infections) why till now Omicron cases are milder – as they don’t affect lungs as badly as earlier variants. Hence this variant might actually end up inoculating large swathes of people at low cost and thus ending the pandemic


Yet in India we continue to display the numbers of Omicron morbidly (even for asymptomatic). Absurd lockdowns and restrictions like Night curfews and interstate RT PCR testing are commonplace in the country. What lies ahead for the people whose work is dependent on the whims of the governments (especially state) makes me very cynical.

It seems Indians by and large think they’re “Ruled’ by governments. In Western societies citizens know they’re “Governed”. I guess that explains why in India we have had no protests against the string of senseless restrictions and lockdowns last 18 months. 


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118 thoughts on “Open Thread – Renewal of Covid Restrictions in India”

  1. DaThang, By the time i got back to ur comment the thread had closed.

    DaThang – //Which agricultural complex are you talking about? I know of one instance in Sri Lanka which did not last.

    Lahuradeva and some other sites with cultivation.
    Also nowhere in the world (since ancient DNA) has HG ancestry shown to be as high as India (around 30-40 %). If incoming Iranian like ancestry started primitive agriculture (cultivation + pastoralism) and integrated pure HG groups (AASI) – the % of AASI seems too high – even 25-30% for IVC and overall 50-60% for ASI.

    I find it unthinkable that expanding agro pops who would have larger absolute populations than HG – would retain so high % of HG populations (as HG had lower absolute numbers).
    Hence i think AASI had started cultivation/pastoralism independently (or without large demographic impact) much before urbanization of IVC (maybe potentially parallel to Mehrgarh). Patrick Wyman and Razib have also made similar points based on similar logic

    1. I am not saying than Iran migrants started out as cultivators themselves. My position on this has been clear for quite some time: Iran-like people who migrated to India were HGs, not farmers. And the ratio admixture is one of my arguments for this as well.

      Iran-like people arrived well before agriculture or even cultivation in North India. And some thousands of years after the Iran HG-AASI HG admixture the first instances of cultivation in Northern India began and agriculture followed that later on.

      1. Dathang – that would work for IVC – wrt 3:1 ratio of IranHG:IndianHG;
        But as we speculate – when the IVC began to fall and IPe pop started going inwards forming ASI – even there the ratios are on parity.
        As in its fine to speculate that unmixed AASI also practiced forms of Agro lifestyle (farming/husbandry/ maybe fishing) south of Deccan or East of Yamuna. As theyre also parity in mixture with both Steppe as well as IPe

        1. 3:1? You are talking about Shahr BA2. Shahr BA3 can be something like 50% AASI, and that was sampled from the same Shahr e Sukhteh as Shahr BA2.
          We have hit a fundamental disagreement that can only be resolved by more ancient samples. I say that the Iran-like ancestry arrived as HGs and mixed deep into north India long before the first cases of cultivation in mainland South Asia.
          You are siding with the other option of Iran-like ancestry arriving with cultivation, only to meet AASI cultivators.

          1. // DaThang
            I say that the Iran-like ancestry arrived as HGs and mixed deep into north India long before the first cases of cultivation in mainland South Asia.

            No no – i do agree with that speculation on your part – that may indeed be the case.
            My point is about the unmixed AASI in specific (not InPe/pre IVC) – the ones about whom there is claim that they were unmixed till Janapada times – “Forest Tribes Ashoka refers to”.
            The claim that AASI when they mixed with Steppe / IVC types – they were Hunter gathers is something I disagree with. It doesn’t have to be said that these various AASI types invented agriculture – but it might have spread without demographic inputs from IVC ppl

          2. >The claim that AASI when they mixed with Steppe / IVC types – they were Hunter gathers is something I disagree with.

            Maybe. But I do not think there is clear evidence for them being independent intensive cultivators. Lahuradewa and even mesolithic sites I think would turn out to be mixed populations, heavily admixed with Iran HGs. Most of North India would be that way all the way to southern Uttar Pradesh (and corresponding section of Madhya Pradesh). The first aspects of Neolithic in India emerge around ~7500 BC, which was eventually followed by a full neolithic *in those regions*. The regions under the neolithic did expand in geographical area, but places with mesolithic cultural and material activity persisted until around 5000 years ago (like parts of Rajasthan Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh- not an exhaustive list, just the ones that I know of). This is another thing to note about Indian prehistory: the unevenness of cultural spread. Kashmir is in the neolithic when much of Northern India and Pakistan were in the bronze age, and parts of Western India were in the mesolithic while other parts of Western India were in the bronze age. These very late mesolithic HGs had mesolithic material but signs of grain reliance (Gujarat). You could say this is a sign of grain reliant Hunters (more in the vein of Natufian types than like actual agriculturalists or Hunter-Gatherers) but those grains could have easily come from trade with nearby bronze age cultures who were engaged in mass scale agriculture.
            I think your scenario of non-HG AASI at the periphery (south of UP, probably like in Bihar) could work if we see this is a continuum of HGs in the furthest reaches of Bengal (+ other regions south of it) and farmers who became farmers around 7000 BC in Northern India. Somewhere in between you may find HGs who found and exploited a niche where they remain HGs in most aspects, but being different due to relying on a lot of cultivation either by themselves or buying it from others. Maybe they could be called Hunter-cultivators/grain exploiters. They may be many different kinds of these groups on a cultural spectrum which aligned with a corresponding geographic spectrum. Similar to this, an interesting place to look would be post-mesolithic Madhya Pradesh, there is Bhimbetka, what location on the continuum/spectrum would that occupy?
            But there are still two things about this that I can’t square your proposal with:
            1- Even people like Santhals have a little bit of Iran-like ancestry so the AASI wouldn’t be an isolated AASI thing (Independent AASI cultivators can’t be squared with the continuum scenario, only one can be right or both can be wrong).
            2- This would have all likely started well after the first cultivation in the main North Indian cultivation zone (lets say Haryana-Uttar Pradesh and possibly extend it to parts of Pakistan). So if the fringe groups became Hunter-Cultivators/exploiters then it would be through the impact from the proto-agriculturalists in the north, as in a response to *that* change.
            So while I think there could be such niche Hunter groups, I think that they would form after the neolithic disturbance to the equilibrium and since they are in the spectrum, they wouldn’t be independent actors without being influenced. Furthermore, this wouldn’t be needed to explain the high amount of AASI (more than say, the WHG in EEF) since that would just be because the Iran HGs who migrated were just HGs and thus fewer in number. The mixture between Iran HG and AASI HG could have happened in different proportions in different places so these could also have sown seeds for later admixed groups with varying amount of Iran HG and AASI HG ancestry from group to group.
            As a complement to this: why did I not talk about Iran HGs in India who are Hunter-cultivators with a little bit of AASI only (like the possible late AASI hunter-cultivators with a little bit of Iran-like ancestry further southeast)? Because all of the Iran HGs would have mixed with AASI HGs in places which thousands of years later became a big heartland of agriculture in South Asia, so the only independent zones of near pure Hunters engaging in harvesting would be high AASI percentage ancestry types. I am saying this because I do not want people to think I am implying that the initiation of agriculture was *because* of the Iran-like input, it was done by a mixed population long after the admixture event.

  2. I posted it somewhere, since open thread was closed.

    Over the past 50 years, the global narrative about 1971 has been shaped by some facts but also by many falsehoods, by a few truths but also by several travesties. This documentary comprises informative but candid observations by a galaxy of distinguished individuals.

    They include eminent scholars and researchers, former ministers, ambassadors, policymakers, journalists, and eye-witnesses from the United States, United Kingdom, India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. Their thought-provoking reflections enable viewers to survey 1971 with unprecedented clarity and accuracy.”

    1. @Saurav:
      I meant in 2-3 generations castes will dissolve.

      repeating the obvious:
      Missionaries exploit poverty and caste fissures. Remain vigilant but no point being paranoid about them. COVID did a 1000 times more damage to Hindus/Indians, as does lack of employment, malnutrition etc. People whose future is in India have more consequential things to worry about.

      Coconut pundits, especially non Republic of India origin ones have no skin in the game and like to talk about caste and religion over and over and over and over and over again despite plenty of other things going on in India. Then come in the Pakistani origin Muzzies to add to the noise.

      Remember the wailing going on on this blog when Delhi Riots happened. Secularism over, Indian secularism = frog being boiled, blah blah blah… No need to take provocateurs too seriously.

      1. I don’t think caste will dissolve in 2-3 generations. Genetic makeup may change but not caste. I have a radical different theory, the upper caste specially Brahmins and Rajputs and even Vaisyas will double down on castes now since the muslims of India are not changing their social behaviour and are doubling their radicalization, the Upper caste Hindus probably will do the same.
        Also the social churn many people talking regarding BJP, this will end in 20 years for sure because the social churning isn’t causing the political environment to change. Hindutva project though trying to integrate both lower and upper caste has somehow gone to trash and the RSS and BjP are trying to integrate muslims with the Hindus now and this will end the hindutva project badly.
        The amount of dissent I see among the working class and the Hindu middle class irrespective of their caste identities (except a miniscule minority of Dalits from Maharashtra) regrading the integration of the muslims with Hindus. The complaints I got while traveling in UP last month from most of the village and even city dwellers was that BJP is trying to shove muslims through their throats and there is a huge anger against BJP on ground only regarding that. It’s mild but the symptoms will become severe in the coming decade.


    Chinese demographer makes a persuasive case that China’s demographic situation is far worse than generally assumed. In general, we’ve seen a collapse in fertility across the world. India recently went under sub-replacement rate fertility and if these trends persist, then India will peak in 15 years rather than in 2050.

    Automation will not just be an imperative for the West anymore, but increasingly for even poor countries. I don’t see Indians wanting to accept immigration since only Pakistan, Afghanistan and Africa can supply migrants to India. China faces the same issue. Both are traditional emigrant countries which only accept small numbers of skilled migrants, and that won’t be enough to stem the tide.


    “ To that end, the matrix is a lot like capitalism. Every time it creates an affluent paradise, people grow disenchanted, they long for conflict, and humanitarians from well-off families arise—beneficiaries of inequality who wage a moral war against inequality. Thus it was not unnatural that Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels hailed from affluent families. And that after them, generations of academics and writers who called themselves Marxists were usually from wealthy families.

    All our heroes who lead the war against capitalism, too, are creations of the very system they wish to dismantle. Their job is not to destroy capitalism because they cannot. Their job is merely to manufacture the hope that capitalism can indeed be destroyed. By promoting mediocre foes, capitalism ensures more threatening enemies never rise.“

      1. Where are you getting this from ?

        I think later buddhists much more likely to be brahmin, early buddhists non-brahmin.

        1. what seemadeep meant probably was that many of buddha’s earliest disciples were brahmins, eg mudgala, sariputra. the last follower before his death was also a brahmin. buddha’s successor kashyapa was also a brahmin.

    1. Jains are more hindu than hindus. I don’t even understand why they are not classified as just upper caste. 😂😂


    LMFAO. Look at the last set of graphs. 67% of Jains don’t think someone can be a member of their religion, if they don’t believe in God. Jainism can be described as atheistic or at least non theistic. They don’t even know their own ideology. Yeah Jains are basically Hindus with extra dietary restrictions at this point…

  6. Yet in India we continue to display the numbers of Omicron morbidly (even for asymptomatic). Absurd lockdowns and restrictions like Night curfews and interstate RT PCR testing are commonplace in the country. What lies ahead for the people whose work is dependent on the whims of the governments (especially state) makes me very cynical.

    You can’t fault Indians for going through a PTSD because of second wave. Restrictions will ease if Omicron continues to be mild.

    1. @principia

      The reinforcement for a historical and civilizational reassessment has been for long stemming from the hard sciences in India.

      The intrinsic factor driving this is that – quite a lot of the Brahmanas (Aitareya, for example) contain detailed descriptions of the night sky – which acts a gateway for the scientifically inclined in cosmology and archaeo-astronomy – which tend to be engineers or researchers.

      The extrinsic factor is that there is a modus vivendi at India’s technological institutes which is the focal meeting point for Indian diaspora and the elites – who are now locked into a symbiotic relationship of funding and ideology.

      This kind of dynamic is not available to the humanities centres like JNU – who have not produced anything for global consumption – and hence are locked out of diaspora’s funding. The arts and the humanities stream have long descended into a “heaven’s locked embrace” of marxism/deracination/colonial indology.

      There was some sort of stir at JNU 2 years ago against the newer assessment systems – there were placards saying “We will not become like IITs”. Manu Joseph said this is exactly the sort of thing that gives JNU its ill reputation among Indian middle classes who aspire for “perfection halos”.

      JNU has now become the stomping grounds for disenfranchised sub-altern Brahmins like Kanhaiya who have to perforce swim against the rip-tides of renaissance sweeping the establishment.

      Coming to another smaller “eddy dynamic” at play, Swapan Dasgupta made the point that a lot of cow slaughter talking points and historical renaissance are actually OBC drawing room topics which have spilled over into the nation’s attention. A lot of the leading lights in the AIT/AMT camp are/were Brahmins – a natural outcome of the elite dynamics from 1950s/1960s. The very same set of disenfranchised Brahmins are now attempting to head off a challenge from rising OBCs in the field of history-telling.

      So this is three battles rolled into one – AIT vs OIT, Brahmin vs OBC and JNU-types vs IITs………

  7. There has been a spurt of Pakistani tv shows/movies on 1971 war. Surprisingly all are on YouTube. Really enjoying some of them. ISPR seemed to have upped their game.

    1. Its too easy for young Pakistanis to access materials online that reflect the historical consensus on ’71. Institutional propaganda must work harder now to stay ahead of the game. Are there any genuinely new revelations?

      1. Pretty sure, at least in Pakistan there was a narrative which really ran contrary to ‘historical consensus’ on 71. There was no need for Institutional propaganda, since ppl themselves were convinced that they did no wrong there. Or perhaps wrongs were committed on both sides.

        It just that in this post fact world, they have now started putting it more confidently on celluloid. No new revelations.

        1. One of the dynamics in Pakistan , because defense participation is so high in most dominant punjabi jaatis, they know through direct sources the reality of what happened on the ground. That’s why they have that sheepish smirk when they talk about bangla-pakistan brotherhood, meanwhile their idea of drawing room ribaldry is boasting about about how they sodomized bangla boys.

  8. All this talk of Bengali genocide by Punjabis aside, most Punjabis know that the army employed some brutal methods to stifle dissent and wish to forget the whole thing. However what is unacknowledged (both by Indians and Bangladeshis) is that Bengali Mukti Bahini heavily targeted Biharis and tried to ethnically cleanse them by killing all of them. Most Pakistanis want to forget the whole 1971 war so they also forget to push forward this narrative, but my family was personally affected by it so it’s kind of hard to forget. My father recalls that it was actually the Bihari soldiers from the Bihar regiment, who tried to put a stop to the Bihari genocide after the Fall of Dhaka and clashed with local Mukti Bahini foot soliders who went on a killing spree of Biharis.

    Scenes like these were common

    1. There is a reason why the genocide of Biharis is often overlooked. Most Indians do not know that the current version of the story of 1971 war is a piece of propaganda by the Bangladeshi government. Many Bangladeshis know
      the real story but it’s a crime in Bangladesh to express views about the 1971 war that do not agree with the official version. So the Bihari genocide gets mentioned only in youTube videos and articles written by Bangladeshis who are settled in Western countries.

    2. The point I was trying to make is not about the 71 war per se, but how much better Pakistan TV is in comparison to Indian TV.

      I feel even Indian OTT shows use the easier way out of shock and awe , or sex to get audience. While because of restrictions imposed on Pakistan shows , they have to creatively come up with better characterizations and stories to keep the audience hooked.

  9. Re 1971, the reason no one talks about the plight of biharis is the same reason no one talks about germans + allies during their retreat on the eastern front.
    Recently there was twitter thread on Dr. Omar Ali’s TL about how Jinnah was justified in TNT due to India’s recent swing towards Hindutva. I mean how do you even justify a reaction being the cause of an action SMH.
    Pakistanis are used to be the West’s henchmen to be used to keep India in check. When they overdo their ubermensch act and are stranded to face consequences, they cry betrayal bs.

  10. The analogy equating the Biharis to world war 2 German henchmen is quite misguided. Those were citizens of Pakistan – living in Bengal, who simply did not go with the pro Independence movement (along with many other Bengalis – often those of an older generation). They were easy targets, because most of them could be distinguished from the locals because they primarily spoke Urdu, and migrated to Bengal before/during/after partition in search of opportunities provided by the new state, and were therefore likely to hold government or upper level private sector jobs compared to the average farmer Bengali. Therefore their killing during the war was a result of Bengali resentment against Biharis for ”taking their jobs” and ”their land”.. And it’s not like Pakistan was some invading force in Bengal like Germans were in Ukraine or Russia. East Bengal *was* Pakistan..

    To be honest, Bangladesh is free to play the victim card (and victim they most definitely were) to craft a national identity. But to Pakistan, it matters nil, we are not neighbors and have no stake in maintaining good relations with them, and most of us don’t even remember nor care about Bangladesh anymore. It’s been 50 years, the whole thing has been wiped off our memories, and frankly in hindsight, separation seems to have turned out better for both countries.

    1. I think that the reason Pakistan doesn’t remember/care much abt Bangladesh is that it happened quite early , and right from the start it was treated as some sort of frontier. Had india lost its north east states in 62 war, or Kashmir in 47, we would have had the same reaction.

      1. For India, Bangladesh >> East Pakistan any day.
        Why care about how Pakistanis choose to cope (or not cope)?

        1. @Saurav bhai:

          Bahut acid hai yeh Ganja. Pakistani buddhe chill kyu nai marte? Main toh Orissa, Karnataka ya Kerala mein kisi beach pe dhup-sekunga uss umar mein.

          He used to be on the same tier as ‘Qibla durust, inke palle hi kuch nai hai, Huzur ki shaan…’ Hassan Nisar, and ‘Masla-e-Kashmir, International Geo fala-dhikana’ Moeed Pirzada.


          Prats mentioned Ashwini Vaishnav and his semiconductor design incentive scheme. Maybe we should discuss that in detail.


          Russian Irkut MC-21 got certified. 14 years in the making, big deal. It is the Russian answer to 737 AND 320. Dekhna ghanta koi nai khareedega inka maal, iska Russian P-8 banega, refueller banega, sab kuch banega par koi passenger nai chalga. Jab Russian nai kar paate, toh NAL kya hi kar lega?


          Air India handover delayed, fingers crossed that all is well. Modi hai toh mumkin hai.


          Saudi ARAMCO-Reliance $ 15 Billion deal fell through as itself over valued Aramco thinks Reliance petro-business is overvalued. Any thoughts? Good/Bad?


          Rakesh Jhunjhunwala is starting a new Indian airline at just the right time. 80 planes on order. Jet Airways is back!!! What a time to be alive. Indian aviation will boom, don’t know if stocks will make money off it but market size will boom.


          1. What an interesting and entrenched extended family! Networks from Pakistan to Dhaka via Bangalore, murder, power, show-biz, … they have it all.

      2. Yeah it happened quite early, and hard to imagine that it’s now 50 years.. most Pakistanis are fine paying lip service to ”we did not give rights to Bengalis so they were justified in seperation” or ”we committed a lot of atrocities” but that’s about it. lot of amnesia surrounding it, probably because it seems so far away, in time and distance.

    2. > The analogy equating the Biharis to world war 2 German henchmen is quite misguided. Those were citizens of Pakistan – living in Bengal, who simply did not go with the pro Independence movement

      It is not misguided as even many innocent Germans suffered retributions after world war 2, not just soldiers etc. From what you say it seems a similar thing happened with Biharis in Bangladesh but on a much smaller scale–1950)

      1. Once again, this is false equivalence. Those Germans were actively trying to colonize Eastern Europe, claiming Lebensraum. Biharis were not colonizers, they were in their own country.

        1. I agree to with on German thing, but isn’t it a stretch to say that ‘Biharis in their own country’ ?

          I mean for the longest time Mohajirs were seen as outsiders in Sindh precisely because of same reason. Even today Bengalis in Assam are seen as non-natives, even though they can make a case that they are ‘in their own country’.

          1. The situation in Bengal and Sindh was exactly the same, where their middle/educated class was Hindu that mostly left the new country for India, replaced by Hindustanis. Resentment in Bengal and Sindh was not because their own ethnic Hindus left (they hated their own Hindus), but because they had their own claim on evacuee properties, and empty civil service posts which went to the immigrants. The new immigrants were also much more urban and educated so they took over business and industry, further causing resentment amongst Sindhis/Bengalis.

            In both cases the immigrants were in their own country (yes foreign land, but own country – a new concept in the era). In both cases, Sindhis and Bengalis were actually the first to adopt and promulgate the idea of Pakistan because they disliked their own minority Hindu class that was dominant in their provinces (Punjabis warmed upto Pakistan quite late in the 1940s and even in 1946, AIML couldn’t form government there.).. but when it came to accept the consequences of Pakistan, they claimed foul. I have a theory that both these groups wanted Pakistan because they considered themselves seperate from India, and under a united India, they did not want to be ruled from the center. Pakistan to them would have meant more autonomy to their own regions.

          2. “they considered themselves seperate from India, and under a united India, they did not want to be ruled from the center. Pakistan to them would have meant more autonomy to their own regions.”
            If they were Hindu/Sikh majority would they have had similar feelings? clearly no. Better wording would have been being Muslims they wanted autonomy from the center elected by Hindu majority.

            If entire India was Muslim would Sindhis and Bengalis have had this desire for ‘autonomy’? Don’t think so.
            All this ‘autonomy’, ‘ploy for rights’, fala-dhikana is Ayesha-Jalal-eque Pakistani attempt to put lipstick on the pig – that the grand-fathers of current Pakistanis were a hateful (harami is the right word) people. Just like today they were not talented, licked foreign people’s balls, could not compete in trade, could not study as hard, just could not keep up but thought of themselves as the najayaj santan of Aurangzeb alamgir, just like today they could not think of anything other than strategy, lame ‘theories’, acronyms, kabaili hamla, qurani-science, hawai bakchodiyan …

            The stupidest sounding of the lot are the whose grand-abba ji clearly voted for Partition, then stayed behind and now ‘lament’ that Jinnah actually divided Muslims and so he was bad, had Muslims been united they would have… Even ‘moderate’ Pakistanis also use this point as if they are giving Hindu Indians a big concession by accepting benefits of united India. Haan BC hinduon toh gobar khate hain jo itna obvious bewakoofi bhara idea i.e. even in united India Muslims would unite on communal grounds and vote, sun ke inhein gale laga lenge.

          3. >If entire India was Muslim would Sindhis and Bengalis have had this desire for ‘autonomy’? Don’t think so.

            I think there is absolutely nothing in common between Sindhis and Bengalis apart from their disdain towards their Hindu compatriots. So I’m quite sure that if entire India was Muslim, both these groups would want a seperate country.

            However in an India divided between Hindu and Muslim, I am quite sure that both these groups would be united against Hindus.

          4. @qureishi @bhimrao
            As a corollary, is the idea of India a prerequisite for the idea of Pakistan? Had a united India as a successor to the Raj not even been tabled as a possibility, would regional hindu-muslim divides found expression in the demand for new states?

          5. The Muslim itch would have surfaced one way or the other. Chilling out, not bothering others and Islam just don’t go together. This religion is too organized and not something benign like swa-dharma i.e. individual duty.

            Plus the bombast and hyperbole of everyday Indian languages means politicians(like Jinnah) would have kept raising the stakes.

          6. @Qureshi
            idk man. Indians bitch and complain about each other so much but in practice Madraasis and Punjabis or Marathis and Manipuris get along quite well, other than Kashmir everyone else thinks of themselves as Indians. Have started intermarrying and just don’t bother each other. Secure in the knowledge that they have a shot at becoming PM one day, ruling country sized states, diverse and divisive people like Mamata to Stalin to Pawar to Reddy, by and large would keep the peace and retain the Indian Union even if BJP+ Congress goes extinct and the Hindi(more Indian as Saurav would day 🙂 ) belt disappeared from the face of the Earth.

            But all of it depends on the acceptance of Indian-ness as the primal identity, everything else falls into place and gets negotiated.

  11. Wrong thread but I have a query.

    800bce SWAT valley samples are low on steppe ancestry Right? Post 800bce is not considered a good source for steppe component because it was East Asian rich Right? So the only other source of steppe enrichment comes from South aka Punjab but doesn’t this source for steppe enrichment alliveate the onge component for the indo Iranian Afghans?

    In short how are we explaining steppe enrichment for modern Afghans if both outside and inside sources are bad for steppe enrichment?

    1. Overwhelm? Please. We’ll gladly take more of that bimaru cheap labour to bolster our economy and as for LS Seats, that ain’t changing until all of India reaches replacment levels.

      We Dakshinwasi people gave you Adi Shankaracharya and saved you from Buddhism&Jainism, on top of that you were Mughal subjects for a while and you still have the gall to call us “less hindu”!?? Less by what mertic, exactly? We gave you the bhakti movement and you gave Muslims free land and women. Facts speak for themselves. All you can do is hide behind dogwhistles.

  12. repeated absence of rahul gandhi from india and his stays in europe is his choice, money and time.
    my worry is, will he not become a target of blackmail for our foreign ‘friends’?. will this not compromise indian security and policy?

  13. @Bhimrao

    Talking of aviation in India. Just learnt that there are regular flights from Delhi to Bareilly. That too from Terminal-3.

    I don’t even know who this makes sense for. You can easily drive the distance in less than 5 hours.

    1. Mostly these flights are to serve as connecting leg of a longer journey like Bareilly to Bagdogara on honeymoon or Bareilly to Bangalore for work. In a hub and spoke model it would serve someone who has a connecting flight from Delhi hub very well. Traveling from NDLS or Anandvihar bus terminal to IGI, taking care of baggage, rechecking in is a hassle.

      I knew a few papa ki pariyan who have never travelled in rail or bus. People also seem to prefer flying+cab over train if their old parents are going/visiting alone.

    1. There is a roof and floor for both BJP and the main challenger SP. Unless some social group breaks down , BJP should hold a lead of 5 – 7 percent which is comfortable enough to give them the majority, perhaps not a handsome one, but still.

      The wild cards are Dalits. If they break for SP, then it will become a even contest.

      1. I presume, bjp has not been able to make a dent among yadavs to at least abstain ? What will it take to do so or make SP voters ask for better governance and law and order?

        1. Yadavs have a choice b/w a party where they will be part of a coalition (BJP, sandwiched b/w UCs and other OBCs) vs being the Numero uno in their own party (SP), where incidentally they are the minority (Muslims 20 %, Yadavs 7%).
          Why would they choose option 1? Unless they are edged out by the muslims in SP. On Governance and security, almost all parties are there and there about. BJP can throw more goodies, since it controls center purse strings.

    2. I am seeing a lot of BJP posters in Noida/Greater Noida area. Barely anything from SP or BSP.

      Seems to me that the Jaat, Gurjar of the area are going to go with BJP. One can’t be sure, though. Noida is anyway a jinxed constituency. No CM in 20 years before Yogi had visited it.

      1. BJP is super strong in urban areas. Its victory margins sometimes surpasses 50 percent in these areas. Its actually in rural areas, where it struggles.

  14. there appears to be stream of defections from akali dal to bjp. this includes many sikh faces.
    1. are these politicians seeing some hope in bjp? or is it arm twisting by you know whom?
    2. bjp is not all that untouchable to sikhs as being projected.

    interesting indeed.
    a certain leader of christians has also joined bjp!!!

    1. Nothing major. BJP is the last choice of any leader in Punjab. Most of them are discarded by the other 3 parties. The BJP also has a base in certain urban pockets, so leaders from these areas dont see it as a bad bet, considering all other doors are closed.

  15. Secular, liberal and feminist woman despairs over what she terms “the fringe” having infiltrated her family (read: RW).

    She comes from a Hindu UC, educated family. I wonder, were they ever fringe? BJP has long done best among educated, urban Hindus. Looking back, it’s amazing how a minority view managed to convince everyone else that they were the mainstream when they never were.

    1. Well, I’m neither secular (the way it’s defined in India) nor feminist (what it has degenerated into), and I’m male (unlike the writer), but I concur with both the accuracy of her observations and her concerns. I am a certain kind of liberal (what would be called a libertarian in the West) though, so this isn’t surprising.

      I’ve seen similar changes in my family, especially in my father; though, to be fair, it’s not a totally new thing with him; he joined the RSS around the time Modi himself did so. I’ve also seen something similar, though to a lesser degree, at my workplace (which is an MNC populated by folks who have degrees from abroad, like I do). But I avoid familial conflicts by pretty much avoiding talking politics, and also not taking politics that seriously. To me, this is a passing phase, and as a UC Hindu, I can afford to take such an attitude and ignore all the crap. But if I were a Muslim, I’d already have left the country (as a couple of my friends have) or would actively be trying to do so.

    1. That final paragraph gives the game away:

      If India has conferred on other countries an immense amount of talent, it has also exported some of the most troubling aspects of caste. For the past 18 months a California court has been hearing a suit filed by a Dalit employee at a Silicon Valley firm, demanding compensation for alleged discriminatory treatment by higher-caste bosses.

      The Western press understands that the caste system is a great divider as the Hindu-moslem issue is mostly lost since liberals are politically disempowered. So if you can’t whip up religious acrimony then go for the caste angle.

  16. DaThang – TheWarlock
    Can you take a look at the blog ?
    the author has found some discrepancies in ?
    Basically he finds the Z scores for Brahmins and Bhumihars in the paper to be inflated. (-7-8) – he seems pretty confident of the methods.

    Also check other posts (like Roopkund ones) – some interesting points

    1. U are the first person I know of, who lives in india and still passionate about all this mumbo jumbo ( outside of intellectual circles I mean)

      1. Kushal Mehra’s Carvaka Book club have 50-60 interested parties.
        Many more are there in India.

    2. I don’t do qpAdm stuff so I can’t comment on it. People who use it have critically responded to those blogs so take a look at both sides and salt both to taste.

      1. @DaThang @GauravL

        There is no subjectivity in that blog for different opinions to arise!! The Narasimhan paper breaks a statistical axiom – a z-score array’s mean is always 0.

        It is not about qpadm or Brahmins or AIT/AMT anymore – just about statistics.

        Unless he used some other exotic stat method but chose to present it as a z-score on the paper. Which is intent to mislead. I am also curious to see what is the explanation (assuming any of the 30 leading geneticists on the paper will respond).

        1. the Z scores did seem off – -7-8 seems way off but again can’t comment – I don’t run it.
          Yes I agree seems like a pretty glaring error if true – not that it changes the meat of the paper – std D of -4-5 would also make the same point
          I am pretty much in the AIT Boat but this does make me question the method of peer review. Ought to ask Razib

          1. The blog also shows the z score for Indus Periphery/Steppes ratios – about -1.7 to -2.3 for a few Brahmin groups. No great statistical significance.

            There have been some shoddy fabrications for AMT/AIT in the past. This one is glaring. Still think that some exotic stat method was used and labelled as a misleading z score.

    1. From what I have seen in CS departments in the US, I would much rather invest in Bangladesh than Pakistan. The skill level of the average software developer is likely much higher in Bangladesh. More women are literate, so there is a larger pool of skilled labor.

      When the time is right, India should impose sanctions on the individuals and institutions sending dollars to Pakistan, much like the US does vis-a-vis Iran.

      1. ‘When the time is right, India should impose sanctions’

        LOL. Which world u live in, man?

        1. Like the cricketing world, the tech startup world is one in which India has much more leverage vis-a-vis Pakistan. Sanctioning funds and institutions which do deals in Pakistan, forcing them to divest of their stakes in Indian startups is a very viable strategy.

          1. … Yeah, but unlike Cricket, India isn’t the biggest boss in the startup world. Its one thing to have ‘more leverage’ , and quite another thing to own a game altogether (which India does in terms of Cricket finances)

  17. Traveled to Udaipur for a few days over the new years.
    Some thoughts and observations not necessarily linked to the trip.

    Punjabi music has displaced Hindi music as the number one choice at pubs/weddings.
    Have seen it across the country now over the last few months.
    Ironically, the only place where I saw Hindi music play was at a baaraat in Odisha. Those folks are behind the curve.

    I think this is down to the fact that the Punjabi pop industry has to appeal significantly to the diaspora. This means better production quality, aspirational themes, and fidelity to global trends.

    Bollywood really lacks risk taking capability. So they’ll just copy what they see is working. Hence, you see even more Punjabi songs in Hindi movies.

    I think Bollywood’s popularity has anyway been on the wane and with covid there’s no concept of a big budget blockbuster anymore. Bollywood is competing with Harrdy Sandhu and Bhuvan Bam now.

    This does provide a template for other regional entertainment industries to grow, though they will lack the prosperous audience and light skin appeal of Punjabis.



    Gujarati tourists are a big deal in Udaipur. One of the amusing things I noticed was that alcohol shops would often have large signs written in Gujarati.
    Prohibition is certainly helping Rajasthan.



    Indians are a trash people. The left side of the road is almost always red with paan stains. There’s also cow dung strewn around roads all over.

    And Indians don’t hesitate in creating garbage dumps out of beautiful natural spots. It’s really annoying hiking up a hill only to see a mound of plastic bags and bottles.

    I am often reminded of the time I had gone on a geoup trek to Roopkund a few years ago. The team I was with were trying to be ‘eco warriors’ or something. Everyone was given a bag to pick up any plastic that they found on the way.

    The only person who actually ended up taking this seriously was an Irish guy.

    I wonder how much tourist money we lose because of this.
    (Not to forget the much larger ecological and health damage)


    1. @Gaurav

      I am unable to post a follow-on message to the above with some more points. It shows an internal server error. Not sure what could be the issue.

    2. Cont…


      Something I should have visited but only got to know of late was a site of the Ahar culture from 4000 years ago. If I ever come back I’d like to check it.


      People from Delhi and surrounding regions are usually stereotyped to be rude and aggressive.
      This is totally true. It takes me a while to get used to everyone not being mean.


      Udaipur is quite pretty if you can ignore the trash. I’d recommend visiting.
      There’s a nice Airbnb run by a retired colonel and his wife that I stayed at. If any of you wish to visit, I could share their contact.

      1. Good season to visit i think.

        🙁 at the trash – i wonder why this still remains an issue – What good have the MP cities done to get this issue sorted ? Indore -Gwalior – Bhopal ? Apart from changing societal norms
        They seem to be getting in top 5 clean cities every year.

        Any comments ?

  18. ““The Bania is the worst parasitic class known to history. In him, the vice of money-making is unredeemed by culture or conscience. He is like an undertaker who prospers when there is an epidemic. The only difference between the undertaker and the Bania is that the undertaker does not create an epidemic while the Bania does. He does not use his money for productive purposes. He uses it to create poverty and more poverty by lending money for unproductive purposes. He lives on interest and as he is told by his religion that money-lending is the occupation prescribed to him by the divine Manu, he looks upon money-lending as both right and righteous. With the help and assistance of the Brahmin judge who is ready to decree his suits, the Bania is able to carry on his trade with the greatest ease. Interest, interest on interest, he adds on and on, and thereby draws millions of families perpetually into his net. Pay him as much as he may, the debtor is always in debt. With no conscience to check him, there is no fraud, and there is no chicanery which he will not commit. His grip over the nation is complete. The whole of poor, starving, illiterate India is irredeemably mortgaged to the Bania.”

    1. Anti brahminism and anti banianism at work. There is a video making rounds in UPites mobiles in which a “Yadav” says that “Tum Brahmano ko Kashmir se nikala hai ab UP or Panjab se nikalege”. This takes me back to a similar call given by Periyar in 1937 to throw out all Brahmanas from Madras province. 1948 Brahmin massacre in Bombay province by Congress led to large migrations of Deshastha Brahmans in Karnataka, Chitpavan Brahmins into Eastern Maharashtra. All such incidents are put down because Brahmins are easy targets since they don’t make up a % vote share in any states except UP and Odisha.

  19. if it was mamata she would have stayed on the flyover till the hindrances were cleared. or she would have walked across and created a scene. modi not being a street creed politician missed this oppurtunity.

    1. srsly? thank god, modi has better tactical sense than to run head on in to disaster.

    2. Modi has had his share of ‘street fighting’ is his CM days, braving bomb threats in Bihar rally etc.

      Plus Modi know where all these shenanigans impact. He knows all this will have zilch political impact in Punjab, so why waste time and space.

  20. I see lot of online kvetching from usual rw suspects about how modi needs to be tuff. While there are some tactical things that can be done, I am not sure lot of ppl appreciate the bigger strategic picture. we are facing a 2 front threat on borders. The need for fdi means we have to tolerate ngos, which means internal destabilization. If there is a hard crackdown on ngo, there will be economic consequences. Then this same crowd will kvetch about lack of jobs. I am not talking about the false flag rw btw.

    1. There are 2 types of folks who are ‘modi needs to be tuff.’

      1. Trad jokers, who think Yogi is the main guy, and Modi is the pussy. Same jokers who will go back to hiding in there caves, once Congress is back

      2. Liberal jokers , who supported Manmohan on his lack of military action after Mumbai attacks as ‘foresight’, while show faux concern on Modi on his lack of action over China, ironically writing in ‘The Hindu’

      Jokers like this ☝️

    2. I see lot of online kvetching from usual rw suspects about how modi needs to be tuff.

      Modi went full wimp after his re-election. US turned up the heat and he has meekly complied.

      we are facing a 2 front threat on borders. The need for fdi means we have to tolerate ngos, which means internal destabilization.

      But at some point the music has to stop. China made its move, and you saw how the hammer came down when they did. But China was always far more insular. Its elite was never as westernised as in India.

      The danger for India is the longer you wait, the harder it will be to have any crackdown whatsoever. Policy implemenation needs elite buy-in.

      If there is a hard crackdown on ngo, there will be economic consequences.

      Better make it done, take the hit while India is still poor and then slowly let Uncle Sam get used to it, get resigned to it. Remember the noise about India getting sanctions for S-400? This is one rare instance where Modi showed some backbone and he was richly rewarded for it. Cowards don’t win.

      Then this same crowd will kvetch about lack of jobs.

      If you think FDI is needed for job creation then you need to take some basic econ 101 class, with all due respect. Japan, TW and SK never relied much on FDI. Korea even outright banned any car imports to build up their own industry. Taiwan never relied on any FDI either. China did rely more on FDI but it was never a job creator. It was more about tech transfer, which they forced. India has not been as militant on that, even under Modi.

      1. ‘Remember the noise about India getting sanctions for S-400? This is one rare instance where Modi showed some backbone and he was richly rewarded for it.’

        To be frank, i dont think the S-400 is strictly a military move. Don’t see much effectiveness, considering the finance outlay.

        Its more of keeping the Rus on our side, by buying some stuff from them. And if we are throwing money, might as well get some good stuff rather than their Sukhois and other below par stuff.

        US understands it, and given its lukewarm approach to sell their own Patriot system, isn’t totally hostile to the idea.

      2. >>Modi went full wimp after his re-election. US turned up the heat and he has meekly complied.
        >>> Ahh the dejection when a “noble savage” does not take the bait.

        >>But at some point the music has to stop. China made its move, and you saw how the hammer came down when they did. But China was always far more insular. Its elite was never as westernised as in India.
        >>> I think you answered partly answered your question. Apart from westernization, India is composed of mulitple ethnicities even within Hindus not mention religious fault lines.
        >>Better make it done, take the hit while India is still poor and then slowly let Uncle Sam get used to it, get resigned to it.
        >>> Again, rousing the “noble savage” to take the Bait. Remember the Chinese waited till they were strong. Even now, not everyone in CCP is completely onboard with current approach.
        >>If you think FDI is needed for job creation then you need to take some basic econ 101 class, with all due respect.
        >>> FDI is needed in capital intensive projects and overall modernisation which leads to jobs. Again I am not an expert and there is no bar on improvement. You are right about tech transfer being key. Here modi is desperately trying to get chip fab plants in to India but again needs western sign off. Our desi brains are the GC race and desi capital is in rent seeking race.
        Frankly, Modi is doing much more than what many thought was possible. 370, RJB, UCC in modified form are all either complete or underway. Kashi and Mathura are bonus. Tremendous buildup of physical infra + PLI, ease of living aka toilets, cooking gas etc. Belated Focus on child nutrition. FCRA changes to guard against bad ngos. He can improve 2 way communication with supporters. Focus on responsive candidates at mla, mp and cm levels.

  21. “Punjabi pop industry has to appeal significantly to the diaspora. This means better production quality, aspirational themes, and fidelity to global trends.”

    The Punjabi pop industry can appeal to its diaspora, because there is blue collar immigration from Punjab to the West, where disposable incomes rise to the level of the Indian middle class. Hindi blue collar immigration is to the UAE where incomes are a lot lower.

    In the same vein, a certain strain of Bollywood can now appeal to its white collar diaspora in the US. Recency bias applies but I think there is more experimentation in Bollywood than ever before.

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