Our all-knowing friend Google is out with its ‘Year in Search’ report for 2018. It was an eventful year for India as we celebrated and we grieved in equal measures. The year 2018 saw the devastating Kerala floods, the Amritsar train disaster and the passing of famous personalities like Sridevi and Atal Bihari Vajpayee. But to balance the scale, we’ve had some happy events too, like the decriminalisation of section 377, which came as a big relief to the country’s LGBTQ community. And 2018 was also the year of Bollywood A-lister weddings, the Kiki Challenge and Priya Prakash Varrier’s legendary wink. These eventful happenings have also inspired Indians’ Google searches this year. Here are some of the top questions Indians asked the internet in 2018.
What is Section 377?
In a landmark judgement, the Supreme Court of India ended a long-standing problem by decriminalising section 377 of the Indian Penal Code. The decision was a watershed moment in the LGBTQ rights in India. What is Section 377 of IPC? Know All About the Law on Homosexuality & LGBTQ Rights.
What is Happening in Syria?
The Arab Spring uprising of 2011 against President Bashar al-Assad has turned into a full-blown civil war in Syria, leaving 350,000 people dead and turning cities into graveyards overnight. Many groups and countries with vested interests have also been fishing in troubled waters, making the situation even worse than before.
What is Kiki Challenge?
The Kiki Challenge contagion gripped the world in 2018 when the comedian Shiggy posted a video of him dancing to the song on Instagram. This fuelled a global trend that became a headache for traffic enforcement worldwide. Scores of youngsters started posting videos of themselves jumping out of a slow-moving car and performing a dance routine as the car moved. The KiKi Challenge is Causing Accidents, Here Are Some Other Fatal Social Media Challenges That Went Viral.
What is #MeToo Campaign?
The winds of the Harvey Weinstein scandal of 2017 also billowed into 2018. The #MeToo Campaign received impetus in 2018 after a Bollywood actress publically accused actor Nana Patekar of harassment. The #MeToo juggernaut took down many influential names like Sajid Khan and Alok Nath who were accused of sexual harassment by multiple women. #MeToo Gains Momentum in India Yet Again, Women Tweet Incidents of Sexual Harassment at Workplace.
What is Ball Tampering?
In March, two Australian cricketers, Captain Steve Smith and Vice-Captain David Warner, came under the scanner for ball tampering. The two were removed from their respective posts and ended up facing a one-year ban.
What is Nipah Virus?
A Nipah virus outbreak in Kerala in the month of May brought the state to the brink of a contagion. But the swift response of the state government helped avert what could have been a monumental health crisis. Although there have been cases of Nipah virus outbreaks in the past in West Bengal, 2018 was the first year that it grabbed national headlines. What is Nipah Virus? How it Spreads, Symptoms & Preventive Measures.
What is Cardiac Arrest?
After Bollywood actress Sridevi passed away in February, there was a lot of curiosity surrounding the cause of her death. Medical reports say that she suffered a cardiac arrest, which inspired a lot of searches on the topic.
What is Lunar Eclipse?
A lunar eclipse happens when the moon passes behind the earth into its shadow. July 27, 2018, saw the longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century. It lasted for approximately one hour and 43 minutes. The eclipse, also known as the Blood Moon, also rumoured to be a sign of world end.
What is No Confidence Motion?
In July, the NDA government withstood a No Confidence Motion passed primarily by the Telugu Desam Party, backed by opposition parties such as the Congress. A No Confidence Motion is passed by coalition parties to bring down the elected government, in case of dissidence. The Narendra Modi-led government managed to tide through the crisis and emerged unscathed.
What is the SC-ST Act?
The Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act of 1989 protects certain communities from discrimination other injustices. The Supreme Court of India ruled against the arrest of the automatic arrest of the accused under the act and introduced anticipatory bail, citing concerns over the act’s abuse.