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SAMARTH BANSAL

SAMARTH BANSAL

The powerful want to choke it to death. But India has enough journalists who make journalism thrive

The alarmist ideologues writing obituaries of Indian journalism fail to draw the line between criticism and cynicism. The singular focus on the increasing volume of bad information in our public sphere blinds them to the good work done by reporters and editors.

The powerful want to choke it to death. But India has enough journalists who make journalism thrive

Lessons learnt from my 52-week workout streak

Today, I have hit a personal milestone: cult.fit app informs me I have been regular with my workouts for 52 weeks in a row — meaning, over the last year, I exercised every single week without exception. From being a high school student who preferred to bunk the sports period

Lessons learnt from my 52-week workout streak

Why I am relearning statistics

I have finally started what I had been thinking of doing for at least two years now: relearning statistics. I am a freelance journalist/programmer, and I control the volume of work I want to hold at any point. To make time for this academic pursuit, I consciously reduced my

Why I am relearning statistics

I don’t know how to resolve the tension between the desire to enjoy the world, the curiosity to understand it and the rage to change it

I wrote this note in my journal on the morning of 16, February 2021, recalling the events of the previous day. A young environmental activist was arrested, and it triggered a series of thoughts laying bare the inner conflicts I often deal with. I don’t have any meaningful way

I don’t know how to resolve the tension between the desire to enjoy the world, the curiosity to understand it and the rage to change it

Inside the five-year battle food companies have fought to resist stricter labelling norms

India’s food regulator proposed changes in labeling rules to empower consumers: if the quantity of fat/salt/sugar exceeds a specified threshold, food packets would have a front-of-pack warning label. But this policy is not moving, following fierce opposition from the industry. My interviews with scientists, government officials, independent

Inside the five-year battle food companies have fought to resist stricter labelling norms

How I cope when it seems like the world is falling apart

Totally lost my cool yesterday evening. The trigger: a story published in the Washington Post. I posted an impulsive update on Instagram. This morning: I could not sleep well. One of those days when I woke up feeling a bit anxious, thinking about all the easy, comfortable and privileged choices

How I cope when it seems like the world is falling apart

Turning politics into theatre

Tweets by an international pop star—five words, one hashtag, a linked article—and a teenage climate activist on India's farmer protests have rattled thin-skinned Indians. What an irony: A citizenry perennially subjected to state-sponsored propaganda is tweeting #IndiaAgainstPropaganda. Liberal critics, unsurprisingly, are outraged at this mass reaction and calling

Turning politics into theatre

Journalists refer to themselves as storytellers. Is that a mistake?

"Facts come in the way of beautiful prose," a colleague at the Wall Street Journal told me during my 2018 fellowship at the newspaper. It stayed with me. Every time I ponder over the limitations of journalistic methods to understand the world, I think about it. Especially in the last

How I approach and manage my freelance journalism career

"There is a lot of uncertainty in figuring out how this will work out," reads the seventh point in my journal entry titled "On Quitting", dated 13th January 2019—the day I resigned from my full-time job at the Hindustan Times. After two excellent years at HT—where I got

Thoughts and observations on data journalism in India

Today, I complete five years in journalism: one year at The Hindu (my first job, straight out of university), two years at the Hindustan Times—which overlapped with a five-month fellowship at the Wall Street Journal—and two years as a freelancer. 'Data journalist' was my official job description in

Thoughts and observations on data journalism in India