December 4, 2022


Help others or not

In the article, “ To Give or Not to Give” (Upfront) I learned that many tourists visiting India have seen a lot of kids begging for money, because they don’t have much food  to eat in their homes, they have to go to the streets and beg for money. But in the article they mention, “ If I give them money, exploitative adults may take it.” I don’t think taking the money away from these kids that don’t have food is right, we all have necessities but stealing their money is something unfair.

I think that all those people live in poverty but as adults they should respect the way others help these kids. But I also think we should contribute to helping these people because they also need the help, as many of us. 

What if Students don’t have the necessary tools to learn virtually: India & Salt Lake City

Earlier this year I was prompted with a question on how the transferring to online school would affect those who would not be able to afford or acquire the necessary tools to be successful to be on online school. After some further research I stumbled upon on article written by Vice’s Pallavi Pundir “As Indian Classes Go Online, Those Who Can’t Afford Smartphones Go Without” which tackled the question I had head on. Interestingly enough, the article was on a perspective we don’t really get to often living in such a prestigious country. Many of the people in India are not the wealthiest and the article shows how hard it is for some who are living on bare necessities and how it is hard for those kids to even have the right tools needed to be online. Secondly the article talks not only about the devices needed, such as smartphones, to go online, but also the lack of accessibility to Wi-Fi, which I feel many of us take for granted. The article describes how hard it is for some and what they need to do to gain this access, Pundir writes “In the Tsuruhu village in the northeastern state of Nagaland, as many as 39 school and college students have been trekking three kms to take online exams for the last two weeks.”

With the previous article taken into account, I found a more recent article written by Courtney Tanner of the Salt Lake Tribune “3,000 students haven’t logged on for the first week of school in Salt Lake City”. This article is a more local article and shows that although we are thousands of miles away from India we still suffer from the same conflicts. In NowComment I have annotated the article talking about how it has presented similar affects on the community and answering the question to what if students don’t have the necessary tools to go online.

Students Go Online in India

In the article, “As Indian Classes Go Online, Those Who Can’t Afford Smartphones Go Without” by Vice, talks about how kids in India are struggling to go into online school with some of the kids’ economical situations.

This article goes on to talk about how kids in India are going now to transfer to online school via smartphones due to the ongoing pandemic. They state problems that are affecting families on how they are losing their jobs due to COVID and are barely getting by with money enough for just food, clothing, and basic necessities.

They mention how not all kids are able to get a smartphone to use for their studies online. The article also mentions the extremes that some of the kids have to go to for internet access. “In the Tsuruhu village in the northeastern state of Nagaland, as many as 39 schools and college students have been trekking three kms to take online exams for the last two weeks.”.

We rarely hear about stories like that in the U.S because internet access is so easy for us. We have to understand that in some countries their situations are extreme and this article exposes that and shows how hard it is for some to go and transition to online learning.

Call Center Scams in India

Scams are the worst way to lose your hard-earned money.  Small foreign and domestic businesses capitalize on people’s naivety and willingness to make a living.  The total amount of losses caused by scams in 2019 was almost 150 million dollars.  The most common type of scams is phone scams sent out by small Indian call centers. 

These Indian scam call centers portray the Indian citizens that work for them as bad people, which I don’t completely disagree with because they take large amounts of money from unsuspecting people, however I watched a youtube video that investigated and explains that these call centers are owned by one person who keeps the majority of the money coming in.  The employees that operate the call center are Indian citizens who were lied to by the owners and told it was a legit business and able to get the job because they were able to speak English fairly well.  These employees are under contract that holds them there for years and threatens that if they leave or snitch on the business, they will be beaten or killed.  The employee interviewed in the video I watched claimed that 30-40 people worked a shift and they were each locked in a room and forced to scam until the call center closed.  Owners of these businesses can make at least $1,000 per month while the employees make around $20 per month, which shows that it’s basically slave labor that these people do to survive and to put food on the table. 

Learning about how common this is in India made me wonder, do they have police? And that’s when I researched how corrupt India is and that the owners of the businesses pay off the police so that they don’t get caught.  I think that this topic is very much ignored by the US authorities and I think that the U.S needs to make an ultimatum with India to stop these scams from going on.  I think this is a very underrated topic and should be talked about more.

Challenges facing the women of India


India has become a very special place to me and is very close to my heart. I travelled there this past December and think about it everyday. I learned a lot while there; things ranging from what it is like to be a girl in this country to what the Hindu gods stand for. The thing that had the largest impact on me was the girls I got to meet. While here, I got to learn more about the girls my age there and what their life is supposed to look like according to the Indian culture. Reading about crimes against women and hearing personal experiences first hand are both extremely devastating. But I believe this devastating and sad topic is one that needs to get more light shone on it because of the grand issue it is. I began reading all about challenges being faced by women in India and after meeting these beautiful women I have been interested in looking deeper into it. I have started to research about some of the major challenges that women do face and found articles with very interesting and alarming things.

Some challenges that women face in India range from high infant mortality rates, to extremely low literacy rates, to violent crimes against women including rape. A poll has rated India as the “the world’s fourth most dangerous country for a woman, behind only Afghanistan, Congo and Pakistan.” There are notable differences about how girls and boys are treated by their family members and their community.  This can include things from the food they are allowed to eat to their education. Most girls are just brought up to be a housewife to then get married by her teen years and leave home with their new husband and his family. They are born into a constant cycle of discrimination and being considered as a lesser individual. In fact, an article I found says, “From the time they are born — or not born — and continuing till late in life when they become wives or mothers, it’s a vicious cycle . of discrimination, and violence keeps on continuing.”

There have been several reports of rape and other violent crimes against women and there are more than likely thousands that go unreported or unnoticed. Some really alarming crimes against women include young girls being raped by groups of men and then left to deal with their injuries alone. In addition to these crimes, baby girls that do not initially get aborted are left in heaps of garbage because girls are viewed as a burden and can be costly when they must be married away. It is not a privilege to have a little girl here and reading about the amount of women deaths they experience really makes me feel.

Women have been battling against discrimination since the beginning of time. In history, women are viewed as lesser than men. To help combat this issue there have been organizations formed and people speaking out about the injustices and unfairness of the treatment of women, especially in countries like india. It’s encouraging to read about the progress the country is making after reading about all of the awful things that are an everyday thing here. It’s hard to face the reality that these women in the other side of the world deal with such devastating problems simply because they were born a girl but I am left with lots of hope hearing that the problems are improving. In an article I found it talks about how, “Indian women, in some ways, have also made some strides. Literacy rates have gone up, maternal mortality rates have gone down, and millions of women have joined the workforce.” It offers a lot of hope to the women of India that “authorities acknowledge that action is needed and say they are taking steps to try to better protect women.” Acknowledging that there is an issue is the first step to solving or beginning to solve a problem this large.