By Jagmohan Parmar:
That day the topic of discussion given to us in class was “The PROBLEM of India”. Immediately after the topic was revealed I heard people around me talking about poverty, unemployment, corruption, population, pollution, terrorism, eve-teasing, lack of infrastructure, illiteracy and eventually I accepted that the list was never-ending. But then by paying a little more attention I figured out that the discussion was about the PROBLEM and not PROBLEMS of India. And this omission of letter ‘S’ from the topic of discussion made me ponder a little deeper rather than just skimming the surface.
Digging deep into the statistics of Indian poverty, around 35% of Indian population (officially) falls below the international poverty line however at the same time, roughly 13 to 17% in America, around 15% in Japan, 22% in United Kingdom and 13% in Germany; population is living below poverty line. Americans attained independence in 1776 and Indians in 1947, now, considering the difference in the percentage of population below poverty line and the years as an independent nation, even after only 60 years of independence India is an emerging threat not only to the emerging economies but even to United States and other developed and powerful nations.
Despite the shortcomings, we have acknowledged 8.8% growth so far and are marching optimistically towards a double digit growth rate; Indian stock exchanges are bullish as if there was never any recession in the world, Bugatti launched a 16 crore car in the Indian market, apparently they saw in us the buying potential and everyday a new company is entering into Indian market. But then where lays the problem? If everything is optimistic and positive then where is India falling short?
The problem is in Indians themselves, i.e., the thinking process, the way we Indians comprehend the happenings around. A lot of protest were organized against the manipulation and embezzlement of funds for CWG 2010 games held in India. Now the question is if it was not them and if it was you and me dealing with funds, what were the chances of manipulation? If it was not the present politicians say, Lallu Yadav and Mayawati, would we not have tried our level best to save the chair for ourselves? If it was not the forced terrorist, just you and I going through the miseries of life that forced them to take up on the path of terrorism in order to feed ourselves and our family?
We waste a lot of our time watching shows on television, shows likeÂ Rakhi ka Insaaf and Bigg Boss. But how would we react to a similar situation where two males are in love, or when a transgender walks up to you seeking help? How many of us studying in reputed business schools thought of opening our own business houses in order to provide employment to others? We have learned a phrase since childhood “Each one – teach one.” But how many of us actually thought of going out of our way of actually implementing this into action?
It is not about the government, not about the education system, not about social ethical codes; it’s about how we perceive India. How many times have we heard somebody saying “Ye India hai, yahan sab chalta hai” (this is India, everything is OK here) or how many times have we ourselves said “India ka kuch nahi ho sakta” (no good can happen to India). India is us and we are India, the sooner we understand this the better it is for us and the nation. The solution to most of our problems lies within ourselves and our outlook. A simple change in our own mindset will change how we look at our nation, and how others related to us look at our nation. That is how we spread the 6 letter word, change. So next time when somebody would ask about the problem/problems of India, I would smile and say I have no problem! What about you?