Last week, Mastercard organized REACH –Acceptance Summit 2019, a one of its kind platform that aims to bring together industry stakeholders to chalk out a roadmap to make India the largest digital payments acceptance destination in the world. The event witnessed exciting talks and panel discussions with senior executives from Mastercard, leading banks like SBI, RBL Bank, Yes Bank and Axis Bank; and leading fintech players.  

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Isn’t religion a belief in a higher being or a set of principles which would guide one through life?

Though I was raised in a specific religion, I knew people of various sects in my own religion as well as people of other faith. From my friendships with these people, I learned that they too were taught to love God and their neighbours, exactly what I was told that my religion taught.

During my schooling and upbringing days, I was familiarised with the teachings of helping others, especially the poor, sick and disabled. Some of these teachings, looking back, may have been bigoted and hypocritical, but never were they advocating violence.

As I grew older and got exposed to several other religions, I learned that they too held similar views and espoused a life of peace, love, and charity.

To sum it up, during my childhood, adolescence and early adulthood, religion to me was love, peace, charity and living in harmony.

As I grew older I learnt that my understanding of religion was not always true. I started to understand that with some religions, or more specifically, with some religious people, there was a caveat to what I had always thought.

That caveat was that according to their understanding of their religion, it is one of peace, love, charity, and harmony, only if others believe as they do. If we harbour slightly different beliefs or cultures or lifestyles than they do, it is not just unacceptable, but dangerous too.

History has enough evidence that in multitude of wars have been fought over religion, ideologies, politics or land; more people have died in religious wars than any other types of war, statistically approximately 809 million people in religious wars as compared to 209 million in non-religious wars.

However, if we take a closer look at the past, it can be seen that in most cases true religion was never involved in these wars. Aside from some ignorant and bigoted missionaries, there were usually other reasons for the killing of millions of people.

This was the case in just about every war which was waged in the name of religion. The oppression of religious minorities or any minority for that matter has its root causes in greed, power, bigotry, hatred, and politics.

Disregarding wars involving religion, history also shows us the reason to see religion in a different light. There are enough historical evidences of the Catholic Church encouraging science and the arts, while Islam was noted for advances in science, mathematics, and architecture. The mysticism of our Asian religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism fostered a new way of dealing with science and self-awareness and mental and physical health.

What went wrong?

Well, I can say that humans went wrong. Religious extremists hijacked what was normally a peaceful and loving creation of man, resulting in a tradition of hatred, fear, and prejudice being passed down to human misfits.

Today, when we talk about fighting a “war on terrorism”, it should actually be called a “war on religious extremists”.

Islamic extremists may be the most prevalent, but they are by no means alone. Many Muslims still harbour a fear and hatred of Christians for the atrocities of the Crusades and wish to go back to the times when Islam was a powerful political and cultural force. This really has nothing to do with religion, only hate and power and perhaps politics.

Religions mostly may not be breeding hatred, bigotry and violence, but they are often havens for degenerates and just plain evil people to live and act with security and often impunity. They believe that since they are practicing a religion they are protected.

The primary responsibility for this extremism is of the religions themselves for allowing an atmosphere where this extreme negative behaviour and preaching can flourish. Active and passive allowances include not criticizing their extremist members or less actively fight against their views and activities regardless of how violent or murderous they are. The extremists even enjoy monetary support from their religions.

Religion, as a belief in a higher being and a belief that we should love and care for our fellow man, is a beautiful concept. But when people with ulterior motives, suffering from mental disease and extreme hatred and bigotry are allowed to take over a religion and run amok, then religion must be held accountable and must exert control or punishment on its believers.

If this doesn’t happen, we all will be doomed to destruction from an apocalyptic religious war over which is the “true” religion.

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The concepts of business management are ever-changing and fluctuate in accordance to trends of the market. As the world continues to evolve in the spheres of automation and technology, the functions of business are also progressing simultaneously in tandem. Areas that required dedicated expertise, namely analytics, social media marketing, and e-commerce have all significantly developed in the past few years. It is now inevitable for students aspiring to enter business management to learn and understand the applicability of these trends in their profession. Interested youngsters should assess the following courses and choose what suits them the most –

BBA in Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing is essentially one of the most popular avenues of Marketing in this digital age.  Digital platforms such as social media channels, websites, and applications could help bring brands to life for their consumers. Larger groups of target audiences can be reached via these mediums, all while saving vital resources such as money and time. Exploring fresh business models such as content marketing, pay per click, engagement economics, and crowd-funding emerged is the need of the hour. Online tools and software can be used to implement online marketing models – such as pay per click. Engagement metrics in the form of data and analysis can be derived from platforms like an organisation’s website, or its social media handles. Popular social media channels Facebook and Instagram provide unique analytics on post engagement and consumer behaviour. These tools are bound to further enhance in the future.

BBA in E-Commerce Marketing

Businesses are adopting digital channels to not only promote their products but also as a medium to sell too. Selling products online allows buyers to make transactions at their own convenience – be it at their homes or workplace, or at odd hours. The popularity of online shopping is increasing at an escalating rate which makes it an impossible form of business. As per the survey, retail e-commerce sales numbers from 2014 to 2020 will show a growth of around 200%. The growth of technology has enabled brands to attain valuable insights on each unique user by understanding their likes and dislikes, which facilitates unique personalised services. The concept of E-commerce is beneficial for brands and businesses aiming to bolster their sales, as well as consumers.

BBA in Aviation Operations

One of the striking features of this degree is its practicality in today’s world. The need for airline services will ceaselessly exist and attaining an education yourself in this field will help propel students into a pretty niche career pathway. Aviation management and operations cover the business and management aspects of the air transportation industry. Aviation managers work either for airports or for airlines and oversee that the overall business operations run smoothly and according to plan. On a daily basis, an aviation manager may be involved in functions such as fleet scheduling, revenue management, security enforcement, employee recruitment and marketing activities. Aviation managers are also tasked with the responsibility of ensuring that their company is within the limits of federal safety regulations.

MBA in Business Analytics

Data Analytics can be explained as a set of quantitative and qualitative methods utilised in order to derive valuable insights from large amounts of data. It involves a host of processes that include extracting data, bifurcating it in order to analyse the various patterns, drifts, connections, among others. The importance of Big Data Analytics springs has sprung up at breakneck speed along with the advent of the internet and similar forms of automation. It is estimated that by 2020 the combined data that will be conjured will amount to around 1.7 MB’s every second for every human on the planet.

All of the business courses discussed above are highly relevant in the business world today and are all vital in their unique ways. An institute offering all of these courses is University of Petroleum and Energy Studies in Dehradun. This institute has successfully identified the need for providing modern and relevant education to students, in order to prepare them for the rapidly evolving business world.

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