Abhishek Jha

Abhishek Jha is a data journalist. He analyses public data for finding news, with a focus on the environment, Indian politics and economy, and Covid-19.

Articles by Abhishek Jha

Assembly elections: The biggest phase of them all...

All of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry vote on April 6. Polling will come to an end in Assam after the last 40 ACs vote on April 6.

ITBP personnel march ahead of the third phase of West Bengal assembly elections, at Dakshin Barasat and Barlipur.
Updated on Apr 06, 2021 04:58 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Sabarimala to BJP: Key factors at play in Kerala

What has made these elections more unpredictable is the LDF’s strong comeback in the local body polls held in December 2020, where it won a majority of seats at all levels.

A large cutout of Pinarayi Vijayan in Pinarayi Village ahead of the Kerala Assembly election, in Kannur District, Kerala.
Updated on Apr 05, 2021 04:56 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, , New Delhi

Tamil Nadu: An election that is Stalin's to lose

The only person to have retained the chief minister’s post in back-to-back elections in Tamil Nadu before 2016 was Jayalalithaa’s mentor M G Ramachandran.

Members of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) hold placards with portrait of party president MK Stalin during a rally ahead of the Tamil Nadu state legislative assembly elections in Chennai.(AFP)
Updated on Apr 05, 2021 08:54 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha

India Covid-19 curve beats US, set to surpass Brazil

In the seven days till Friday, India recorded 68,969 new cases a day on average. On the same day, the US recorded 65,753 while Brazil recorded 72,151 new cases a day over a week’s period.

A worker sanitizes a hotel ahead of its reopening, Unlock 5, amid the coronavirus pandemic, in Pune. (PTI)
Updated on Apr 04, 2021 06:19 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Factors at play in Bengal, Assam 2nd-phase voting

Here are three charts explaining the importance of the second phase of polling in West Bengal and Assam.

Polling officials leave from a distribution centre in Bankura on the eve of second phase of West Bengal Assembly Elections 2021.(PTI)
Published on Apr 01, 2021 07:33 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, New Delhi

Up in flames: Maharashtra's saga of forest fires

Signs of fire are, in fact, conspicuous along the Murbad-Kalyan highway as one drives toward Shilottar in Thane’s Shahapur taluka

Adityavardhan Pathak, owner of a commercial farm in Thane district, shows a part of his land that was burnt during a wild fire in the beginning of March. “Every year, between February and May, fires break out,” he said. (Satish Bate/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Mar 30, 2021 02:24 PM IST
ByPrayag Arora-Desai, Abhishek Jha, Mumbai

What explains the focus on financial assistance to women in these polls?

In Tamil Nadu, the AIADMK alliance, the DMK alliance and Kamal Haasan’s Makkal Needhi Maiam have announced monthly monetary assistance to women heads of households.

Women stand in a queue to cast their votes during the first phase of elections in Pirakata, West Bengal on Saturday, March 27, 2021.(AP)
Published on Mar 29, 2021 01:56 AM IST
ByVineet Sachdev, Abhishek Jha, New Delhi

Decoding the first phase of West Bengal and Assam elections

Assam will vote in two more phases, to be held on April 1 and April 6. West Bengal will vote in seven more phases and polling will culminate on April 29.

Polling officers stand near electronic voting machines kept at a distribution center ahead of the first phase of elections in West Bengal state in Medinipur, India, Friday, March 26, 2021. The eight phased elections in the state are scheduled to begin on March 27. (AP)
Published on Mar 27, 2021 02:10 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, New Delhi

Second surge of Covid-19 infections quicker than first wave

India on Thursday reported 59,074 new Covid-19 infections, the highest in a single day since October 17, or in 159 days, as the country’s second Covid-19 wave continued to push daily case numbers up to levels not seen since the first wave was brought under control last November.

Devotees pull a chariot carrying Hindu deity Kapaleeswarar during an annual chariot festival, amidst the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), in Chennai, India, March 25, 2021. (Reuters)
Updated on Mar 26, 2021 04:25 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha, New Delhi

Can Congress reclaim Assam with an alliance?

The Congress, which ruled the state for 15 years from 2001 to 2016, has changed its electoral tactics and stitched together an alliance to leverage the consolidation of a previously fragmented anti-BJP vote base to recapture power in the state.

Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi during an election campaign rally ahead of Assam assembly polls, in Sivasagar district, Sunday, March 21, 2021.(PTI)
Published on Mar 26, 2021 04:11 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, , New Delhi

Six factors which will decide the 2021 West Bengal contest

West Bengal is expected to be a bipolar contest between the TMC and the BJP. In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, these two parties cornered 83.5% of the total votes polled and 97% of the total 294 assembly constituencies, if results are disaggregated at that level

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee addresses an election rally, at Bankura on Wednesday, March 24. (ANI)
Updated on Mar 25, 2021 02:36 PM IST
ByRoshan Kishore and Abhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The role of language and religion in Assam battle

While the state’s politics is driven by many factors, the larger issue is the dynamic between language and religion.

Artists perform Jhumar Dance during Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's election campaign rally ahead of Assam Assembly Polls at Purabangla, in Golaghat on Monday. (ANI Photo)
Published on Mar 24, 2021 02:49 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, , New Delhi

What makes electoral politics in Kerala unique?

Kerala is not the only state where political power changes hands regularly. Tamil Nadu had this tradition for 32 uninterrupted years, until J Jayalalithaa led the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) to a consecutive victory in the 2016 elections.

A worker puts up an election campaign banner of Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, ahead of the Assembly polls, in Kochi. (PTI Photo)
Updated on Mar 20, 2021 06:32 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

What does it take to win Assam? A fine balance between religion and language

If there is one state in India where migration is a big issue, it is Assam. There are multi-layered political fault lines in Assam, which encompass caste, religion, linguistic nationality, migration and deprivation

Supporters beat dhol and drums during the nomination filing procession of a candidate in Dibrugarh. (PTI)
Updated on Mar 27, 2021 10:50 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha and Roshan Kishore

3 states face risk of being next Covid-19 hot spots

Maharashtra leads the pack but Punjab, MP and Haryana also see their positivity rates rise higher than the average national rise of 1.4 percentage points; Kerala the only state to see its positivity rate drop over the past 30 days

Special In Madhya Pradesh, the daily case rate went up 277%, while the average positivity rate rose 3.3 percentage points. (PTI)
Updated on Mar 20, 2021 10:52 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha, New Delhi

Kerala: A state of multi-layered bipolar polity

The southern state has a uniquely multicultural society and there are entrenched pockets of support for various political actors in different parts of Kerala

A worker puts up an election campaign banner of Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan, ahead of the assembly polls, in Kochi. (PTI)
Updated on Mar 19, 2021 01:45 PM IST
ByRoshan Kishore and Abhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Which way for Dravidian politics in Tamil Nadu in 2021?

2021 elections will be interesting as far as Tamil Nadu’s long-term political landscape is concerned.

Both M Karunanidhi and J Jayalalithaa, who shared the chief minister’s post between them for 32 out of the last 52 years, are dead now. If we include the term of M G Ramachandran, whose political legacy Jayalalithaa inherited, the chief minister’s post was held between the three people for 42 of the last 52 years.(HT Illustration)
Updated on Mar 16, 2021 01:39 PM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, , Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Tamil Nadu assembly polls: Which way will Dravidian politics swing in 2021?

Whether Tamil Nadu maintains its trend of declining victory margins, the growing footprint of the two major Dravidian parties will only be known on May 2.

File photo: Tamil Nadu CM Edapaddi K Palaniswami. (HT image)
Updated on Mar 16, 2021 03:55 PM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, , Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Never-ending fragility grips Indian workforce

The June quarter numbers capture the period of the hard lockdown, and things have improved since then, as can be seen from the GDP numbers.

The report was released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) on March 10. The latest PLFS numbers also show that the rise in unemployment rate might not capture the entire stress in labour markets.(Reuters/ File photo)
Updated on Mar 12, 2021 09:45 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

West Bengal election 2021: How TMC is countering BJP’s polarisation bid

The Trinamool Congress’s ticket distribution strategy in the forthcoming elections – it is the only party to have declared all its candidates so far – shows a clear pattern that it is trying to counter BJP’s strategy.

Overall, the TMC has fielded fewer Muslim candidates in 2021 than in 2016(AP)
Updated on Mar 27, 2021 10:50 AM IST
ByRoshan Kishore and Abhishek Jha

Why reservation may fail in levelling the field

From SC-ST social groups, reservations have expanded to OBCs, economically weaker sections

The apex court has agreed to re-examine the 50% ceiling on reservations in India while hearing a case on the validity of 10% separate reservations for Marathas(Amal KS/HT PHOTO)
Published on Mar 09, 2021 01:58 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha

Total factories in India grew by 2% in 2018-19

The top three states by GVA were Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Tamil Nadu. They had a share of 41% in the total GVA. Rural India added nearly as much GVA (49%) as urban India (51%).

ASI data is the most important source of industrial statistics of the registered organised manufacturing sector of the economy.(Reuters)
Published on Mar 06, 2021 01:51 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Most cities low on economic ability

The last, which has a weight of almost one-third in the rankings, is a completely subjective parameter.

The average score of the 111 cities is the least on the economic ability pillar. The average score on this pillar is 13.17 compared to 51.38 for quality of life, 53.63 for sustainability, and 76.1 for citizen’s perception.
Published on Mar 05, 2021 01:58 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Urban areas still more vulnerable to coronavirus but cases now evenly spread

While India seems to have so far escaped a second wave of Covid-19 infections, tracking the geography of the pandemic in the country over the last one year makes for an interesting analysis.

A health worker wearing protective gear takes a nasal swab sample of inbound travellers for Covid-19 coronavirus tests at CSMT railway station, in Mumbai.(Bhushan Koyande / HT file photo)
Published on Mar 01, 2021 04:43 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, New Delhi

Five charts that explain the upcoming elections

Three out of the four states going to polls; Assam, West Bengal and Kerala are also the top three states by share of Muslims in the population. With 26.7% Muslims and 16.6% Christians, Kerala has the lowest share of Hindus -- to be sure, they are still a majority – among India’s important states.

The states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Assam account for 13% out of the 543 seats in Lok Sabha.(File photo. Representative image)
Updated on Mar 27, 2021 10:53 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha,

Congress needs to worry more about rebels than opponents in Puducherry

The only time the Congress has lost Puducherry, it has been because of a rebel. The Congress and DMK together have won over 50% seats in every assembly elections in Puducherry since 1980, except in 2011

Representational image. (AFP)
Updated on Feb 22, 2021 06:32 PM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The lessons to be drawn from Chamoli disaster

The effects of the climate crisis on Uttarakhand’s weather patterns and their impact on the environment’s capacity to sustain damage being done by the construction of dams makes the state particularly vulnerable.

Rescuers on Thursday recovered another body from the Tapovan dam tunnel in Uttarakhand’s flash flood-hit Chamoli district, taking the toll from the tragedy to 59,(PTI)
Updated on Feb 20, 2021 10:01 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, Jayashree Nandi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Number Theory: What does mobility data tell us about the state of the economy?

While mobility has been increasing continuously, its recovery is relatively slower when compared to NIBRI. To be sure, mobility levels had reached 90% of pre-lockdown values (median value for the day of the week in the January 3, 2020 to February 6, 2020 period) in December 2020 itself.

The latest NIBRI numbers indicate a moderation in labour participation rate (LPR), which is defined as the share of working age population working of looking for a job.(Reuters)
Published on Feb 16, 2021 03:51 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha

No Covid death in Delhi first time since May 11

According to government data, the highest number of Covid-19 cases in a day (8,593) was recorded on November 11, and on November 18, the city recorded the highest number of single-day deaths (131).

Hundred new cases in Tuesday’s bulletin, reported from 56,410 tests conducted the previous day, took the case tally to 636,260, but active cases were down to 1,052.(HT photo)
Updated on Feb 10, 2021 06:11 AM IST
By, Abhishek Jha, New Delhi

Path to a just transition to lower CO2 emissions

Even at the time these lockdowns were imposed, an improvement in indicators of air quality raised hopes that a world with lower emissions from burning of fossil fuels was not an unachievable target.

Continuing this trend of lower CO2 emissions, however, will also have socio-economic consequences, such as workers in fossil-fuel based power plants or in coal mines falling out of the workforce.(AP (Representative Image))
Published on Feb 09, 2021 03:14 AM IST
ByAbhishek Jha, New Delhi
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