Firstpost Editor's Picks: Mamata Banerjee and BJP, Bharat movie review, Dale Steyn; today's must-read stories

Mamata Banerjee may have become BJP's biggest ally in Bengal due to her repeated missteps, impulsive outbursts

Mamata Banerjee's image of being a street fighter, that had been an asset during her meteoric rise as a politician, is now working against her. For instance, she reportedly barged into a BJP office recently at Naihati area of North 24 Parganas district and “recaptured” it by painting her party's symbol on a wall. These incidents do not paint her as an indefatigable fighter any more, but a leader who is fast losing grip over her party and reality.

Bharat movie review: Salman Khan's sometimes heart-breaking, hesitantly political, plodding trek through history

At a crucial point in Ali Abbas Zafar's new venture, the titular protagonist's father appears to him and says: "Desh logon se banta hai, aur logon ki pehchaan unke parivaar se hoti hai. Tujh mein poora desh hai, Bharat." (A nation is made up of people, and people's identity comes from their family. The whole country resides in you, Bharat.) It is a line that at once sounds profound but means little. It also encapsulates the essence of Bharat: a film that wants to be profound but ends up meaning far less despite its bull's-eyes.

Flipkart's legal spat with GOQii: Predatory pricing benefits net-savvy consumers but hurts small traders, offline shoppers

GOQii’s case is one of Flipkart allegedly trying to circumvent the rigors of the marketplace model by cleverly interposing its own subsidiary or group company. GOQii’s contract was with such a group company that in turn sold through the Flipkart website. Of course, consumers have been having a field day with Flipkart and Amazon. But the ones hurt most are the bricks-and-mortar stores, including the big ones like Reliance and Big Bazaar, who cannot match the foreign firms in a slanging match of burnout. The small online sellers using Flipkart and Amazon marketplace are also outcompeted because deep discounts are offered only on select brands sold on a large scale through e-commerce platforms.

ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Dale Steyn, South Africa's eternal big brother, bows out with head high and legacy secured

To the world, Dale Steyn is more than a cricketer and more than a fast bowler. To South Africans, he is more than even that. He is everyone’s big brother, an example to follow, someone to be depended on in difficult circumstances, who can make you laugh. And cry. Now he is gone; ripped from what would have been his last World Cup before he had bowled a ball in barely controlled fury.

Remembering Agha Shahid Ali: 18 years after his death, a friend writes of the man, and the poet

As I give this essay a final edit, Shahid looms large in my consciousness. I hear his voice in my ear, telling me in an urgent voice, as he said to Amitav Ghosh: “You must write something about me! Write something about me!” These words make me cry. There is no sentimentality here, knowing as I do that Shahid was always aware of his destiny as a poet and its inevitable longevity far beyond his own lifetime. The words make me cry because it makes me think that in the very jaws of death, Shahid did not know the extent to which his popularity would only grow in the wake of his early death.

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Updated Date: Jun 05, 2019 19:51:28 IST