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How to Automate NPS Contributions - A Step by Step Guide with Screenshots

Introduction The National Pension System is a great financial product for creating your retirement kitty. With contribution of just ₹5000 per month, you can accumulate more than a crore! I am a NPS subscriber (through NSDL eNPS) myself. If you have read my previous post  regarding EPF you know I like NPS for the following reasons. 60 year lock-in period Additional tax exemption under section 80CCD (1B) Choice of various assets classes Choice of pension fund managers Option to change your asset allocation or pension fund manager Low cost of fund management Transparency & organization structure Good customer support Online account opening and management Multiple exit options at retirement Screenshot from  Pension Calculator | NPS Trust Some Not So Great Things NPS is far from
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Does EPF still make sense?

Like every employee who joins a company in the organized sector, I too was forced to open an account under the Employee Provident Fund scheme. So far I've had a pretty bad experience with the scheme. Over the years I have faced lots of issues with it. This post started as an investigation on EPF. It started more like weekend project to check if EPF still has value in today's day and age where employees are financially educated and better retirement products exists. Let's start from the beginning... What is EPF? 🤔 The Employee Provident Fund (EPF) is a scheme that helps people save up a sufficient corpus for retirement. The plan was introduced with the Employees' Provident Funds Act in 1952 and is today managed by the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO). Source:  ETMoney As per the law, every employee has to put 12% of their salary (=Basic Salary + Dearness Allowance) in their EPF account every m

The Truth about No Cost EMIs

Open up any e-commerce website and you’ll be bombarded with No Cost EMI offers. On the surface it seems like the merchants and the banks have tied up to help you buy your favourite products on installments, without paying interests. But this is far from the truth. They will trick you into believing you are buying the product at 0% interest but you'll end paying more than the original price. Just as there's no such thing as a free lunch, similarly there is no such thing as a No Cost EMI. It’s all just predatory marketing. Let me explain with an example. First off let me tell you, according to RBI's regulations a lender cannot lend money on 0% interest. So banks use different tactics to make it seem like the effective interest rate is 0%. Now let's assume you want to buy a product worth ₹3599. If you bought it using regular EMIs, the bank will charge you ₹133 as interest. So the effective price would be ₹3732. Now if you opt for the No Cost EMI scheme, the merch

Dear edX!

Dear edX, I was in my 2nd year of college when you came to life. And I was ecstatic! No, not to be in college (LOL) but to have finally found my calling. Computer programming. I was browsing through all the resources I could find. Codecademy courses mainly. And right at that moment, you arrived. Your parents hail from the Harvard University and from the MIT. So of course you received my attention. Also, you had an unique selling point: free certificates. This was huge! No one else was doing it. It seemed you were actually trying to help students learn new skills and show off to the world. I was stoked to enroll into the course developed world's top professors. The free certificates were a big motivator to complete the courses. The first course I enrolled into was developed by The Linux Foundation. I have taken several courses since then. Some were on computer programming, some were about a country's history and some provided advice on career growth and personal finance. 2

Why I Started Blogging

It's been almost 5 years since I started blogging. This is the 30th post being published. That means over the course of 5 years, I've written 6 posts per year. Although 30 is much less than I would have liked, this is one of those pet projects I have continued even after the honeymoon phase. Today I want take some time and discuss why I started this blog in the first place. I was in my 3rd year of engineering studies when I started out. I had already developed a keen interest towards programming and tech in general by then. Having a blog seemed liked a cool idea. There were couple of more reasons to go ahead with this idea. That's what we are here to discuss today. Setting up a blog seemed like a technically challenging task. I wanted to know how to setup a blog with comments, advertisements and with a custom domain. It sounded like a great way to acquire new skills and learn new things along the way. Back then I didn't know anyone who shared my enthusiasm for tech

The "this" Keyword

Okay, that was a clickbait. But this isn't much different than what we see on social networks these days. This post is not about JavaScript's elusive this keyword. This is about a pattern I see now-a-days; almost everyday. Social networks have had a big impact on our daily lives. It's how we keep in touch with our friends and family. It's how we follow the people we admire. And now more than ever, it's how we get our daily of dose news. The authenticity of that news is another topic. Today I'll focus on how that news is presented to us. But first check out these screenshots. Example 1 Example 2 Example 3 Example 4 Example 5 See anything in common? Sadly, this is how we see the headlines. More often than not the links are clickbaits or suffer from information withholding. This pattern is prevalent; be it Facebook or Twitter or Google News. In each instance, the publisher could have written the actual subject/topic in the headlines inst

The State of Video Streaming Services in India [Part 2: The Aftermath]

It's been a year since I published my post about the state of video streaming services in India (which can be found  here ). I wrote how media companies were trying to get a piece of that market. A lot has changed in a year. For starters, Hotstar has received a revamp and it works on my Kubuntu system now. Prime Video remains the best option for most people. Many more services have launched. Ozee has rebranded itself as Zee5. But a few things have stood the test of time. Netflix's pricing is as expensive as it was a year ago. Yes, that was sarcastic. Now there are lot of streaming services to choose from. Here's a list of some of the popular ones. Amazon Prime Video Hotstar Netflix YouTube Zee5 Eros Now Spuul Voot Hoichoi ALTBalaji Hooq JioCinema / JioTV Sony LIV YuppTV BIGFlix The list goes on and on. It is said that competition is good for the consumer. More the competition, more the aggressive pricing, more the benefit for the consumer. Just lo