Snigdha Poonam

Snigdha Poonam is a national affairs writer for Hindustan Times. She has previously written for a wide range of Indian and international publications on Indian politics, society and culture.

Articles by Snigdha Poonam

Training for the dream job in the pandemic

How HUL worked to ensure that their hallowed corporate induction and training programme wasn’t disrupted by Covid-19.
For the 101 interns who started training with HUL in April, the pandemic has meant a change but not a stop. Sessions are now virtual and interns get a sense of rural marketing and supply-chain strategies through games and virtual sessions. Sales and factory stints will follow, either virtually or after the pandemic.(Photo courtesy HUL)
For the 101 interns who started training with HUL in April, the pandemic has meant a change but not a stop. Sessions are now virtual and interns get a sense of rural marketing and supply-chain strategies through games and virtual sessions. Sales and factory stints will follow, either virtually or after the pandemic.(Photo courtesy HUL)
Updated on Nov 13, 2020 06:23 PM IST
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Hindustan Times | By

Left in lurch with ban, TikTok stars stare at a grim future

The jokes contained not only funny lines but also music, dance, acting, emojis and a whole lot of wackiness. Thousands of those went viral in the 12-odd hours that the app was functional on Indian smartphones after the government banned it, citing cybersecurity worries.
Through most of India’s months-long coronavirus-sparked lockdown, TikTok remained the country’s most downloaded app as people sought an escape from the reality. Now, they will have to find another distraction.(Bloomberg Photo)
Through most of India’s months-long coronavirus-sparked lockdown, TikTok remained the country’s most downloaded app as people sought an escape from the reality. Now, they will have to find another distraction.(Bloomberg Photo)
Updated on Jul 04, 2020 06:32 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

100 days of Covid-19: Forced to travel in the middle of a pandemic

How, and why, does one travel between states and countries during a lockdown? A migrant worker, a university professor, a techie, and a radio station executive share their experiences
Silhouette of Taj Mahal in the backdrop of sunset(PTI)
Silhouette of Taj Mahal in the backdrop of sunset(PTI)
Updated on Jun 20, 2020 08:12 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Virus and the village: A Covid chronicle

From poverty to poor health care, from mass reverse migration to fake news, rural areas are facing multiple crises at once as the infection spreads across the country.
Bamboo barricades are set up in Khairabari village of Assam’s Barpeta district to prevent the entry of outsiders.(HT photo)
Bamboo barricades are set up in Khairabari village of Assam’s Barpeta district to prevent the entry of outsiders.(HT photo)
Updated on Apr 20, 2020 04:24 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

HT Salutes: Everyday heroes of the pandemic

Championing resilience: As the country grapples with Covid-19, thousands of Indians are finding ways to help the vulnerable by sewing masks, holding donation drives, feeding stray dogs and countering fake news.
A man feeds pigeons during a nationwide lockdown imposed in the wake of novel coronavirus pandemic, in Bengaluru.(Photo: PTI)
A man feeds pigeons during a nationwide lockdown imposed in the wake of novel coronavirus pandemic, in Bengaluru.(Photo: PTI)
Updated on Apr 11, 2020 04:37 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Living on social media and bartering our privacy for it

Facebook grew 600% in the last 10 years, boasting 2.45 billion monthly active users, who nearly make up one-third of the world’s human population.
WhatsApp and Facebook messenger icons are seen on an iPhone.(REUTERS)
WhatsApp and Facebook messenger icons are seen on an iPhone.(REUTERS)
Published on Dec 29, 2019 11:22 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

How e-commerce changed our lives

As 2010s near their end, many are referring to the decade as the “age of Amazon and Alibaba” – the first started by Jeff Bezos in 1997 and the second by Jack Ma in 1999.
In 2010, e-commerce sales were at $572 billion; they are estimated to touch $3.6 trillion in 2019, according to Internet Retailer, an industry intelligence portal. It still only makes up a small portion (8.5%) of global retail sales, but its impact on the consumer imagination across the world is massive.(Bachchan Kumar/ Hindustan Times)
In 2010, e-commerce sales were at $572 billion; they are estimated to touch $3.6 trillion in 2019, according to Internet Retailer, an industry intelligence portal. It still only makes up a small portion (8.5%) of global retail sales, but its impact on the consumer imagination across the world is massive.(Bachchan Kumar/ Hindustan Times)
Published on Dec 29, 2019 10:59 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Media, politics, sex: Untangling a scandal that rocked Madhya Pradesh

Complicated web of property, media, politics, bureaucracy and sex intersected to put Indore under the spotlight.
Jitendra Soni(File photo)
Jitendra Soni(File photo)
Updated on Dec 26, 2019 06:06 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Indore | By

‘Keep talking to me’: Hyderabad vet’s last phone call to sister

In common with the 2012 case, this too was tangled up in gender and class battles; while the victim was a middle-class professional from the city, the perpetrators are blue-collar workers from villages.
People shout slogans during a protest against the alleged rape and murder of a 27-year-old woman in Hyderabad.(Reuters)
People shout slogans during a protest against the alleged rape and murder of a 27-year-old woman in Hyderabad.(Reuters)
Updated on Aug 01, 2020 12:44 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Hyderabad/Narayanpet | By

‘Keep talking to me’: Hyderabad vet’s last phone call to sister

In common with the 2012 case, this too was tangled up in gender and class battles; while the victim was a middle-class professional from the city, the perpetrators are blue-collar workers from villages.
People shout slogans during a protest against the alleged rape and murder of a 27-year-old woman in Hyderabad.(Reuters)
People shout slogans during a protest against the alleged rape and murder of a 27-year-old woman in Hyderabad.(Reuters)
Updated on Dec 03, 2019 09:09 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Hyderabad/Narayanpet | By

‘Everything’s stuck’: PMC Bank account holders face miseries

In Mulund, which has been worst hit by the PMC bank crisis, many of the over 15000 account holders in the area say they are struggling to meet daily expenses, let alone handle medical emergencies and wedding plans.
For a vast majority of the 1.7 million depositors, life continues to get harder by the day. It all started on September 23, when RBI curtailed the bank’s operations, capping withdrawals to <span class='webrupee'>₹</span>1000 once in six months(Photo: Pramod Thakur/ Hindustan Times)
For a vast majority of the 1.7 million depositors, life continues to get harder by the day. It all started on September 23, when RBI curtailed the bank’s operations, capping withdrawals to 1000 once in six months(Photo: Pramod Thakur/ Hindustan Times)
Updated on Oct 23, 2019 06:40 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Mumbai | By

PMC Bank fraud a humanitarian crisis now

For a majority of the 1.7 million depositors, the 4,335-crore loan fraud has resulted in a daily struggle to pay for medical treatment and bills
HT Image
HT Image
Published on Oct 23, 2019 12:14 AM IST
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By, Mumbai

‘Everything’s stuck’: PMC Bank account holders face miseries

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HT Image
Published on Oct 23, 2019 12:06 AM IST
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Nobel for Banerjee, Duflo a boost for their poverty action lab’s India programmes

Banerjee and Duflo, with long-time J-PAL affiliate Michael Kremer, were jointly awarded the 2019 Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences, or the Nobel Prize in the field of economics, “for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty”.
Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo were awarded the Nobel Prize for their experimental approach to alleviate global poverty.(HT Photo)
Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo were awarded the Nobel Prize for their experimental approach to alleviate global poverty.(HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 18, 2019 06:59 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Fourteen years, six deaths, one family suspect, and a trace of cyanide

Since Jolly Joseph’s arrest on October 5, a series of allegations have sprung up in and around Koodathayi of her involvement in other mysterious deaths in the recent and remote past, although only one of them has been registered as a police complaint.
(Snigdha Poonam)
(Snigdha Poonam)
Updated on Mar 17, 2020 12:58 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Thiruvananthapuram | BySnigdha Poonam and Ramesh Babu

5 more FIRs against Kerala cyanide killer

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HT Image
Published on Oct 11, 2019 11:25 PM IST
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BySnigdha Poonam & Ramesh babu

Kerala cyanide killings: Five more cases filed against Jolly Joseph, others

A police officer, who is part of the investigation team, said five cases were registered in two police stations-- one in Thamaraserry and four in Kodencherry-- based on the confessions of the accused. The evidence collection trip that began on Friday morning ended late in the evening covering six key spots.
In her confession, Jolly reportedly said the first killing of Annamma Thomas, her mother-in-law, was executed after giving her pesticide-laced food. And in all other cases, expect the death of Alphine, she said cyanide was used.(FILE PHOTO.)
In her confession, Jolly reportedly said the first killing of Annamma Thomas, her mother-in-law, was executed after giving her pesticide-laced food. And in all other cases, expect the death of Alphine, she said cyanide was used.(FILE PHOTO.)
Updated on Oct 12, 2019 05:41 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Kozhikode/Thiruvananthapuram | BySnigdha Poonam and Ramesh Babu

She brought shame to family, we won’t help her: Kerala cyanide killer’s father

The remarks came on a day Jolly was remanded to six days in judicial custody and a co-accused said he procured the poison because Jolly told him she needed it to kill rats.
A view of the Ponnamattam house of late of Tom Thomas in Koodathayi near Kozhikkode where all six deaths took place. Police later sealed the house.(HT Photo)
A view of the Ponnamattam house of late of Tom Thomas in Koodathayi near Kozhikkode where all six deaths took place. Police later sealed the house.(HT Photo)
Updated on Oct 11, 2019 09:16 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Kozhikode/Thiruvananthapuram | BySnigdha Poonam and Ramesh Babu

Kerala cyanide killings case: Accomplice says Jolly sought cyanide to kill rats

In one of the high points of the day, one of the co-accused Praju Kumar claimed he was innocent and had only supplied “little quantity” of cyanide to Jolly so that she could kill “big rats” in her house. Six members in Jolly’s family have died mysteriously over several years.
Jolly Joseph suspected to have plotted and murdered six of her family members with cyanide-laced food over the years was sent to police custody on Thursday(Representative Photo)
Jolly Joseph suspected to have plotted and murdered six of her family members with cyanide-laced food over the years was sent to police custody on Thursday(Representative Photo)
Updated on Oct 10, 2019 07:52 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Kozhikkode/Thiruvananthapuram | BySnigdha Poonam & Ramesh Babu

Kerala cyanide case accused may be linked to more murders: Cops

On Saturday, Jolly was arrested from Kozhikode’s Koodathai village in connection with six deaths in her family between 2002 and 2016.
The police have also arrested two men, M Mathew and Praju Kumar, for allegedly helping her execute the murders. Jolly had been present at the scene of each of these deaths.(HT image)
The police have also arrested two men, M Mathew and Praju Kumar, for allegedly helping her execute the murders. Jolly had been present at the scene of each of these deaths.(HT image)
Updated on Oct 10, 2019 04:22 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Kozhikode | BySnigdha Poonam and Ramesh Babu

The five Gandhis

One of the ways in which the Dravidian social reformer challenged Brahmanical domination in politics, education and administration in Tamil Nadu was to agitate against caste surnames.
Indian software developer and Cricketer Kaushik Gandhi poses for a picture at his residence in Chennai(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
Indian software developer and Cricketer Kaushik Gandhi poses for a picture at his residence in Chennai(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
Updated on Sep 30, 2019 01:11 PM IST
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Hindustan Times | By

How fear, rumours fuel mob fury

He said over the six months that he has been posted in Sambhal, not a single child has been kidnapped in the district. He attributed the string of mob lynchings in the region to low levels of literacy, an abundance of free time, and a general disgruntlement among the public.
A view of depopulated village at Asalatpur Jarai, in Uttar Pradesh.(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
A view of depopulated village at Asalatpur Jarai, in Uttar Pradesh.(Amal KS/ Hindustan Times)
Published on Sep 13, 2019 01:27 AM IST
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New Delhi | By

TikTok suspends accounts of three users after Shiv Sena’s IT Cell files FIR

TikTok suspended the accounts of three of its users based on an FIR filed by a member of the Shiv Sena’s IT Cell. These are young Muslim men with millions of followers each on TikTok.
(From left) Hasnain Khan, Faisal Shaikh, Adnan Shaikh, Shadan Farooqui , Faiz Baloch, members of a group known as Team 07 on TikTok. They have a combined following of over 40 million.(HT special arrangement)
(From left) Hasnain Khan, Faisal Shaikh, Adnan Shaikh, Shadan Farooqui , Faiz Baloch, members of a group known as Team 07 on TikTok. They have a combined following of over 40 million.(HT special arrangement)
Updated on Jul 24, 2019 09:18 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Connecting the TikTok dots in 2 murders that shook Delhi

Mohit Mor was sitting in a photocopy shop and scrolling through his smartphone when two young men barged in wearing helmets, pointed guns at him, and said, “Let us make you a TikTok star.” They fired so many bullets into him that even his teeth were found in pieces when the police came.
From Najafgarh to India Gate, a tragic connection in how Mohit Mor (R) and Salman Zakir (L) violently lost their lives(Sourced/ HT photo)
From Najafgarh to India Gate, a tragic connection in how Mohit Mor (R) and Salman Zakir (L) violently lost their lives(Sourced/ HT photo)
Updated on Dec 31, 2019 01:24 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Desire for upward mobility unites India’s young voters

The lived realities of these 15 people couldn’t be more different from each other’s, but their expectations from the country’s next political leadership often intersected.
Eighteen million people between the ages of 18 and 23 were expected to cast their first vote in the 2019 national election.(HTPhoto)
Eighteen million people between the ages of 18 and 23 were expected to cast their first vote in the 2019 national election.(HTPhoto)
Updated on May 22, 2019 12:10 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

At BHU, gender intersects ideological battle

Women strive to carve out a space for themselves at the traditionally male-dominated campus, with people on both sides of the ideological divide saying that they are raising the issues concerning women students.
Women students of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) at a protest on the university’s campus in September 2017(HT File)
Women students of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) at a protest on the university’s campus in September 2017(HT File)
Published on May 18, 2019 08:45 AM IST
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Hindustan Times, Varanasi | By

At BHU, gender intersects ideological battle

Hindu nationalism is central to BHU’s political life, and BHU has had a lot to contribute to the political life of Hindu nationalism.
Women students of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) at a protest on the university’s campus in September 2017.(PTI file)
Women students of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) at a protest on the university’s campus in September 2017.(PTI file)
Published on May 17, 2019 07:05 AM IST
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Varanasi | By

A multi-million insurance fraud that preyed on disease, poverty, desperation

Between 2017 and 2019, nearly hundred people from villages in Haryana officially died in road accidents. What actually happened to them is beyond imagination.
Regional Cancer Centre of Pandit Bhagwat Dayal Sharma Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS) at Rohtak, in Haryana.(Burhaan Kinu/HT photo)
Regional Cancer Centre of Pandit Bhagwat Dayal Sharma Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS) at Rohtak, in Haryana.(Burhaan Kinu/HT photo)
Updated on Dec 31, 2019 01:18 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi/Hisar/Sonepat | BySnigdha Poonam and Leena Dhankhar

Lok Sabha elections 2019: In UP, BJP woos Dalits, but must win trust

Choudhary’s transformation underlines the deep fault lines in the BJP’s strategy and politics around Dalits in Uttar Pradesh: the electoral and social dominance of upper castes, the need to win over Dalit voters (making up a fifth of the state’s voters) and the dichotomy of the party’s appeals to them.
Lok Sabha elections 2019: In UP, BJP woos Dalits, but must win trust(AFP)
Lok Sabha elections 2019: In UP, BJP woos Dalits, but must win trust(AFP)
Updated on May 18, 2019 09:34 PM IST
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Uttar Pradesh/Maharashtra/West Bengal | ByDhrubo Jyoti and Snigdha Poonam

Lok Sabha elections 2019: Opposing sentiments greet PM Modi’s Varanasi roadshow

The rally saw tens of thousands of supporter turn up, besides a number of prominent artists, musicians and national awardees.
The prime minister held a roadshow on April 25, a day before filing his nomination paper from the Varanasi Lok Sabha seat, which he won in 2014. The six-kilometre roadshow culminated at the Dashashwamedha ghat, where Modi offered evening prayers.
The prime minister held a roadshow on April 25, a day before filing his nomination paper from the Varanasi Lok Sabha seat, which he won in 2014. The six-kilometre roadshow culminated at the Dashashwamedha ghat, where Modi offered evening prayers.
Updated on May 06, 2020 04:44 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, Varanasi | By
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