Home >Lounge >Features >Mood: How the Lounge team is feeling this week

Tigers come roaring back

The best news this week has been the rise in number of wild tigers. According to the National Tiger Conservation Authority’s Status Of Tigers In India Report 2018, there are now 2,967 tigers in India, a 33% rise from 2,226 in 2014. The number is the mean in a range of at least 2,603 tigers and a maximum of 3,346. The census report, published every four years, is based on a new methodology instituted in 2006. That year, it was estimated that there were merely 1,411 individuals in the wild. The rise in numbers confirms a growing trend: The census had reported a 21% increase in 2010 and a 30% increase in 2014. For the 2018 numbers, 83% of the 2,967 tigers were actually photographed through camera traps. —BB

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Delivering justice

This week’s biggest Twitter storm started off with a post by a then-obscure (and now Twitter-famous) user who claimed he had cancelled an order from food delivery app Zomato when it “allocated a non-Hindu rider" to deliver his food. Zomato’s decision to respond to this kind of bigotry and communal profiling with a steadfast refusal to countenance it, earned it a trending hashtag called #ZomatoUninstalled, as well as a show of appreciation from people disgusted by the original tweet. Later, even UberEats came under fire for tweeting in support of Zomato, with calls for its boycott. In times of increasing polarization between communities, companies and brands will continue to come under scrutiny by those spoiling for a fight and seeking to marginalize the minorities and caste-oppressed. They would do well to remember the example set by Zomato and UberEats. —SB

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Scorsese’s old gang

The splashy first trailer of Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman dropped on 31 July. If you were worried about what the “de-ageing" effects process might do to the faces of Robert De Niro and Al Pacino...it isn’t too drastic. The film, produced by Netflix and set for a September release, is about the relationship between union leader Jimmy Hoffa (Pacino) and Frank Sheeran (De Niro), a mob hitman. Expectations couldn’t be higher: This is the first time Pacino has been in a Scorsese film, and it’s the first collaboration between the director and De Niro since 1995’s Casino. The Irishman marks Scorsese’s return to his favoured genre—the gangster movie—and reunites him not only with De Niro but also with Joe Pesci and Harvey Keitel. —UB

Women celebrate outside BJP MP Vijay Goel’s house in Delhi on 31 July.
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Women celebrate outside BJP MP Vijay Goel’s house in Delhi on 31 July. (Photo: Pradeep Gaur/Mint)

Criminalizing triple talaq

The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Act, 2019, has been approved, with President Ramnath Kovind giving his assent on 31 July. In effect, this law renders void, and criminalizes, instant triple talaq (cognizable only if the wife, or one related to her by blood or marriage, files a police complaint), with a sentence of up to three years in jail for men who are found guilty. The enactment, being hailed as a victory for Muslim women in the country by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), is being questioned by critics, who describe its provisions as excessive. —AB

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