What to do if you lose money to a bank fraud

With the number of bank frauds increasing, you need to be doubly careful about your transactions, especially online ones. According to the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) annual report for 2018-19, the number of cases of frauds reported by banks increased by 15% in 2018-19 on a year-on-year basis, with the amount involved rising by 73.8% from ₹41,167 crore in 2017-18 to ₹71,543 crore in 2018-19. Frauds related to advances (90.2%) were predominant while frauds relating to card, internet and deposits constituted only 0.3% of the total value of frauds in 2018-19, amounting to ₹220 crore.

Most fraudsters start with obtaining some basic details like your phone number and name of the bank where you have your savings account or have a credit card from. Next they make calls and try to gather information that is important to make online transfers or payments. “Some of the ways financial fraud can be perpetrated is through phishing or spoofing attacks, malware or spyware, SIM swap (original SIM gets cloned and becomes invalid, and the duplicate can be misused to access the user’s online bank account to transfer funds), credential stuffing (compromising devices and stealing data), man-in-the-middle attacks during online payments or transactions, identity theft, card cloners or readers at ATM machines and as simple as imposters calling up unsuspecting individuals and asking for their personal banking details,” said Arpinder Singh, partner and head, India and emerging markets, forensic and integrity services, Ernst & Young LLP.

We tell you how to avoid falling prey to such frauds and what’s in store if you do get cheated even after your best efforts.

How to avoid it?

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Hum ko junoon kya sikhlatey ho

Wo to kahin hain aur magar dil ke aas paas
Phirti hai koi shai nigaah-e yaar ki tarah

Can one be a romanticist and a classicist at one and the same time? The answer would be in negative. But a few have disproved it. Majrooh Sultanpuri was one such poet who drew upon both and blended them together with distinction. He was a classicist in style and a romanticist in disposition. In addition, he was a humanist — a humanist at core. This is reason enough for Majrooh to remain a lasting reference in the annals of Urdu poetry and its much revered poetic culture.

Main akela hi chala thha jaanib-e-manzil magar
Log saath aate gaye aur karwaan banta gaya

Schooled in traditional Urdu ghazal, Majrooh enjoyed the patronage of Jigar Moradabadi. Jigar took him to then Bombay where he met the Progressive poets and started discovering himself as a poet. He shared their socio-political commitment and soon registered his presence. With a potent voice that showed genuineness of purpose, he soon became one of the prominent followers and sponsors of the Progressive Writers Movement. Bombay saw him maturing through stages of life and art. It also saw him emerging and establishing himself as one of its finest lyricists with many evergreen numbers to his credit.

Dekh zindaan se parey rang-e-chaman josh-e-bahaar
Raqs karna hai to phir paaon ki zanjeer na dekh

Majrooh staunchly believed in Marxist philosophy. He was imprisoned for his leftist leanings but was later disillusioned with the way socialism had chosen to follow in its own bastions like China and Russia. He then struck his own deal with life and poetry and sought his own voice by striking a fine balance between art and ideology. As ghazal, a literary form of imperishable distinction, was being interrogated during the heydays of Progressivism, he chose to nurse it differently. He discovered an individual tone of voice for himself and a hinterland of contemporary concerns and romantic affiliations. He did this unlike any of his contemporaries. This is what distinguished him from all of them.

Jalaa ke mishal-e-jaan hum junoon safaat chale
Jo ghar ko aag lagaye hamaare saath chale

Majrooh made a mark with his early poetry itself. He knew the parametres of the traditional poetics well enough to be able to use it to his benefit and acquire an individual voice in the melee of voices broadly represented by Hasrat, Fani and Jigar. He allowed his ghazal to remain a ghazal in its essential make-up. Put differently, he became the mark of ghazal himself. He added to the splendour of ghazal by drawing upon a diction that blended traditional turns of phrase with modernist twists of idiom. In his own way, he kept the Awadh culture alive in his ghazal; in his own style, he emerged as the Meer, both metaphorically and literally, of Progressive and modernist Urdu ghazal.

Shab-e-intezaar ki kashmakash mein na jaane kaise sehar hui
Kabhi ek charaagh jala diya kabhi ek charaagh bujha diya

Majrooh’s distinction as a film lyricist is equally remarkable. He knew his dramatis personae only too well; he knew how they would express themselves put in a situation. He gave them lilting lines that struck a chord with the listeners. Lyrics like Mere saamne waali khidki mein ek chaand ka tukda rahta hai…, Mujhe dard-e dil ka pata na tha mujhe aap kis liye mil gaye…, Manaa janaab ne pukaara nahin…, Ab kya misaal doon main tumharey shabaab ki…, Chal ri sajni ab kya sochey…, Bandaparwar tham lo jigar…, Chalo sajna jahaan tak ghata chaley have stayed as refrains with us over all these years.

Hum hain mat‘aa-e-kucha-o-bazaar ki tarah
Uthti hai har nigaah khareedaar ki tarah

Decorated with traditional education on the pattern of Dars-e Nizami with emphasis on Arabic, Persian, religious knowledge, and also a degree in Unani medicine, Majrooh chose to start his affair with socialism first, and then pursue a career as a poet and film lyricist. He was rather unhappy about his own reception as a poet. He was painfully aware of the literary establishment and its preferences where he did not figure as he expected. But those who wrote sympathetically on his poetry took adequate cognisance of his worth and assigned him a place that he richly deserved as a true-blue poet of Urdu ghazal.

Mujhe sahl ho gayin manzilein wo hawa ke rukh bhi badal gaye
Tera haath haath mein aa gaya ke chiraagh raah mein jal gaye

A recipient of Ghalib Award, Iqbal Samman, Filmfare Best Lyricist Award, and Dada Sahib Phalke Lifetime Achievement Award, Majrooh Sultanpuri penned a lyric for film Mamta in 1966 — Rahein na rahein hum mahka karegey/Ban ke kali ban ke saba baagh-e-wafaa mein… It appears, in retrospect, as if he wrote this for us to commemorate him when we need him the most.


Major relief for taxpayers between Rs 5-10 lakh likely as Panel proposes new slab

Taxpayers earning between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 10 lakh a year may be in line for major tax relief with the task force on the Direct Tax Code suggesting halving the tax rate for them to 10%, two persons aware of the matter said on condition of anonymity.

To be sure, this is still just a suggestion and it is not clear whether the government, which is very focused on increasing its tax revenue, will accept it.

The task force submitted its report last week and recommended that the government increase the number of tax slabs or tax brackets from four to five, but lower the tax rates for many.

There is no change in the first income-tax slab (up to Rs 2.5 lakh a year), which attracts zero tax. The current second slab (Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 5 lakh) attracts 5% tax. The task force wants to expand this slab (Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh) and have a 10% tax rate, while retaining the available full tax rebate for those earning up to Rs 5 lakh.

“Effectively, people having income up to Rs 5 lakh will have to pay zero tax. Tax will be charged for income between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 10 lakh at 10% and an individual can save up to about Rs 37,500 a year (at the higher end) under the proposed regime,” one of the persons cited above said.

Currently, people earning between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 10 lakh are taxed at the rate of 20%. The proposed third slab (Rs 10 lakh to Rs 20 lakh ) will attract a tax of 20%; it is expected to give a benefit of about Rs 1 lakh to the taxpayer if his or her income is on the upper side, the first person said. People in this slab currently pay 30% (the current slab is Rs 10 lakh and above).

The panel has proposed a fourth tax slab of Rs 20 lakh to Rs 2 crore that will attract a tax rate of 30% and the fifth slab, Rs 2 crore and above, will attract a rate of 35%. Under the current regime, the rate is 30% for people whose incomes fall in these slabs. If the proposal of the committee is accepted, a person earning Rs 2 crore will save around Rs 8.5 lakh.

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WhatsApp seeks RBI approval for payments service

WhatsApp is in the final stages of regulatory clearances for the commercial launch of its much-awaited payments service with the instant messaging platform having approached the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for approval, sources in the know of development said.

The company had initiated the process for the launch of its BHIM UPI-compliant payment service over three years ago.

Sources said WhatsApp has agreed to the data localisation norms set by the RBI for payments-related data, and at present, an audit is being conducted for that. When contacted, a WhatsApp spokesperson did not offer any comments.

The Facebook-owned company is already running a pilot for the service, WhatsApp Payments, with close to 1 million users. Other players in the space include Google Pay, which leads the payment service providers (PSPs) market in India followed by Paytm, PhonePe, BHIM app and Axis Pay. The development coincides with the visit of WhatsApp’s top officials to India last month. 

Its global head, Will Cathcart lead a team of senior officials to India during July-end and met officials from RBI, NPCI and the ministry of electronics and IT (MeitY), including IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. WhatsApp’s vice president of global policy and communications, Victoria Grand was also part of the entourage.

During his interactions with the media, Cathcart said that the company intends to launch its payments service this year. He also said that the company has complied with the data localisation requirements. After meeting Cathcart on July 25, Prasad told reporters, “They are going into digital payment also in accordance with RBI architecture and NPCI requirements. I have heard them and have instructed my departments to encourage them if they comply. If they meet the regulatory requirements, they must be encouraged”.

India is an important market for WhatsApp, which accounts for 400 million of its total 1.5 billion users across the globe. The company has already lost a lot of ground to players like Google, Paytm and PhonePe, but wants to ensure that it does not miss this opportunity.

Digital payments is an still largely an untapped market in India with the country clocking more than 822 million UPI-related transactions worth more than Rs 1.46 lakh crore during July 2019. At present there are more than 45 third party apps like Google Pay, Amazon Pay, Flipkart and PhonePe as well as over 140 banks like Paytm Payments bank, Airtel Payments Bank and Axis bank providing UPI-based payments service.

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Faisal Fehmi

Whenever there was a need to stand for truth and to raise a voice against oppression, there was a poet to do so. Poetry has inspired many historic revolutions that have restored order in society. This did not, however, come easily to the poets. They had to suffer immeasurably for raising their voice but firm as they were in their commitment, they did not yield to buy their peace. 
Here is an assortment of verses that stand as best examples of resistance poetry. Read and feel the revolutionary inside you.

Asrar-ul-Haq Majaz was an important poet of the Progressive Writers’ Movement. This is how he encouraged women to be a part of revolution in his own style:

faiz-ahmad-faiz, resistance poetry

With freedom of speech as its central idea, this nazm of Faiz Ahmad Faiz is an anthem for one and all:

faiz-ahmad-faiz, resistance poetry

One of the strongest voices of Progressive Writers’ Movement, Sahir Ludhianvi has written a lot about the evils of society and raised his voice against oppression:

faiz-ahmad-faiz, resistance poetry

Habib Jalib was jailed for writing his nazm, Dastoor, which unveils the tyrannical rule of General Zia-ul-Haq:

faiz-ahmad-faiz, resistance poetry

Zafar Iqbal is one of the biggest names in the post-modern era of poetry. Here is how he calls for raising a voice:

faiz-ahmad-faiz, resistance poetry

The love-life of Mohammad Iqbal (1877-1938)

Acha hai dil ke saath rahe paasban-e aql | Lekin kabhi kabhi ise tanha bhi chhod de

Anisur Rahman

Thinking of Mohammad Iqbal is thinking of one with many distinctions to his credit. Being a poet, philosopher, barrister, academic, and political thinker with a knighthood to his credit made him special in many ways. All these distinguished identities qualified him to be widely celebrated as the “Poet of the East”, “Hakim-ul-Ummat”, and “National Poet of Pakistan”. 
Thinking of Mohammad Iqbal is also thinking of an individual who lived an uneasy life. He could be anyone’s envy for his qualities but fate did not choose him kindly for his love-life. Many who wrote on his life have invariably written about his relationship with a lady called Atia Fiazi. The accounts vary as some are too romanticised and others merely speculative.

Getting to know of her intellectual worth, Iqbal went to meet Atia in Cambridge. He was naturally drawn towards this graceful and intelligent lady. They discussed issues and grew intimate over a period of time. This led Iqbal’s biographers to draw their own conclusion about their relationship. One cannot, however, say for sure if Iqbal was only infatuated by her, or he was really in love with her. One may better suggest that the beauty of their bonding lay in its mystery, or its indefinability to be precise. 
A page from her diary may be an indicator of the nature of their relationship. She wrote that one day she called on him with friends and teachers to take him along for a picnic.

Reaching there, she found Iqbal in a state of deep meditation. It seemed as if he had been in this state for a long time. They tried to shake him up but without success. Finding no other way, Atia decided to send them all out of the room and make her own effort and bring him back to a normal state. She went physically close to him and shook him so vigorously that he came back to his senses. One may leave it at speculation if this was their bosom friendship, or romantic intimacy with each other that made it happen. 

Iqbal and Atia remained friends for long. When Iqbal returned to India after completing his education in Europe, he remained unhappy and passed through a phase of emotional crisis because of domestic issues and traditional environment around. He kept thinking of her and continued writing intimate letters. In one of his letters, he spoke uninhibitedly against his frustration with life. He mentioned that his father had put him in a marital bond at an early age which brought him much distress as he could not relate with his wife in any possible way.

Atia sent a sympathetic response to Iqbal and advised him to seek counselling from his close friends and get their help. Instead of doing this, he kept on sharing his miseries with her but without ever finding a solution. In sharing these sentiments with Atia, he was indeed showing his deep fascination for her who could no longer keep company except writing to him in sympathy. In 1911, he wrote to Atia that some of his poems during the past five years were mostly of autobiographical nature.

Finding himself helpless and unable to retain his relationship with his wife, Iqbal decided to marry a lady called Sardari Begum. Soon after their wedding, Iqbal started receiving anonymous letters about this lady which painted her in bad light. Without caring to consider these letters calmly, he impulsively chose to divorce her and continue with his suffering. 

A little later, Iqbal received a proposal regarding his marriage with Mukhtar Begum of Ludhiana. Since his sister had praised her no end, Iqbal agreed to marry her even without meeting her. When the bride came to Lahore and Iqbal saw her, he was utterly flabbergasted. This lady was not as beautiful as she was descrobed to be by his sister. Iqbal was much too disappointed but he could not do anything except suffering the onslaughts of his fate. 
Iqbal was yet to recover from this shock when he received a letter from his second wife, Sardari Begum. She had written that she was still hoping that he would someday take him again as his wife. She also wrote that if he did not do so, she would remain unmarried all her life. She had wondered how could he take rumours about her so as truth and take an impulsive decision even while being such a remarkable poet and intellectual. 

Going through her letter, Iqbal felt guilty and ashamed of himself. He felt all the more remorseful when he came to know that those libellous letters were written by a local lawyer who wanted his son to be married to Sardari Begum. Iqbal spoke with his well-wishers who said that they knew Sardari Begum’s family quite well and that she was a sensible lady of sound character. Iqbal realised that he had been too much in a hurry, too sentimental, and too unreasonable to have divorced her and married thrice without due consideration.

Realising that he was utterly wrong and disrespectful to Sardari begum, he wanted to get her back in his life but did not know how to do that as he had already divorced her. He sought advice from those with knowledge of sharia laws. He was told that as per the provisions of halala, if a man divorces his wife and wants to re-marry the same lady at a later date, he cannot do so unless the divorced wife enters into a marital and physical relationship with another man and then gets a divorce from him. This perturbed Iqbal. 

He then approached another religious scholar who advised that the condition of halalawas not applicable to his case as he had not spent a night of union with Sardari Bagum. Being totally shaken, Iqbal thought to recompense for his doing and chose to enter into yet another nikah with her. This was Sardari Begum’s second and Iqbal fourth nikah.

Interestingly enough, it was at this point that his first wife Kariman Bibi came to Lahore with her two sons to live with him which caused him further distress. This was a very traumatic phase in Iqbal’s life. It so happened one day that Kariman Bibi’s mother dropped in and blamed Iqbal for his misdemeanour. In anger, she took her daughter and her children back with her. 

It appears that Iqbal chose to strike peace at last. He remained satisfied in his relationship with Sardari Begum. On the other hand, Sardari Begum being a level-headed lady could sense well that Iqbal was a very successful philosopher and poet but he was not such a responsible husband. This was rather dismaying for her. 

Iqbal lived a successful life as a philosopher and poet but not so much as a family man. Indeed, poets and intellectuals live and die differently. Iqbal was one of them.


How to make sure your child car seat is fitted correctly

Research suggests that more than 70% of all child car seats are incorrectly fitted, or the wrong size. Here’s everything you need to know about making sure your child car seat is fitted correctly.

A twisted belt, resting the child seat against the backseat’s head rest instead of the seat back, or using the wrong seat for your child’s age or size, and more besides are all examples of a child seat not being fitted correctly. Even moving a child out of a child seat too soon is dangerous and risks your child’s life in the event of a collision.

Before we go too deep, we need to point out that this is general advice only and that all child seats are different – you should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for your child seat. And, if in doubt, always check with a child seat fitting expert.

Age should only ever be used as a guide when moving your child from one seat type to another and that’s because not all children are the same size/height at the same age. So, you should always go off the height markers on your child seat before moving your child from one seat type to another.

This means that if your child is, say, 10-years-old but their shoulders are still safely below the maximum height marker on the child seat then your child needs to remain in their child seat. Moving them out too early is risking their life in the event of a collision.

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