Friday, April 15, 2011

Are we to remain poor the rest of our Lives?

It was a fine sunny Saturday morning, and i was reading a book about, India then and India now. The facts and figures were quite amazing. It spoke about Dr.Radhakrishnan's reforms, Motilal Nehru's Westernized life style with forks and spoons, Jawaharlal Nehru's motive of oneness in the society, Indhira Gandhi's attempt to make that happen, Rajiv Gandhi's trial on bringing about the same, Gandhian principles, Lord Mountbatten's Comments and so on. I kept reading it line after line, page after page, kept looking at pictures and the time just flew. It was during this relentless reading, that i found the line, "If we are born poor in India, we are bound to stay poor all our life, and it also indicates, that our children wouldn't fare either." I was quite surprised on reading that on an Indian best-seller, written by a well acclaimed author! (Certain things are better maintained when not disclosed!! :D)

I kept reading it, and found the author justifying his statement. For a nation to improve, it should shift into an open access society! This society ensures that neither political nor economic power is fixed or 'inherited'. This comes about, when people innovate and unleash their creativity! He also said that this kind of an environment creates social stability, as people are bound to change their income levels and status! But this wasn't the case with India, says the renowned author!

True? The 'Leaders' of our nation (alright... why go up to nation.. lets narrow it down to one state.. :D) The 'Leader' of a state in India, is too very busy safe guarding his own family and his family or 'ancestral' property, leaving the entire state in agony! They fail to relinquish their throne, and pave way for a much younger and a sensible crowd to rule the state.. let alone their heirs!

People who voice against this (At least those who try to) realize that their attempt is futile and become reticent, leaving the less fortunate to endure this to their utter dismay! The state of all the state-run Schools, the power supply department, the government organisations when you think of only gives you a nightmare. The people, who are mediocre or much better off than the less fortunate, shift their glance to the private schools, private suppliers, gated communities, or emigrate to another country in search of a better life! This leaves, the state uncorrected and this goes on for centuries, and this makes the poor remain poor all their life??

What was the bottom line of all this! 'Corruption' - Oh! The most dreaded word in today's world, the one against which Anna Hazare is fighting! I then started to think about the difficulties that it creates. We stand tirelessly in queues when registering for a service with a govt.org. We end up paying for a free service that a govt.org is entitled to provide. We are so very forced to an extent of not raising our voice against all this, lest we dont get our services done! We are forced to land up in a situation where in we cannot correct the present, as we dont have the power to do it. A mediocre or a rich family might have the afford-ability to get their services rendered, but what would the souls below the poverty line do? They end-up remaining poor?

Do we have an answer to this? Do we have the necessary support to voice our opinion against all this?

Does this mean that the poor are to remain poor all through their life?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Me, Mr. X and Politics!

I am back with a relatively different post this time...not amateurish like my previous posts!! Its about Me and the sudden attention to whats happening in India! I am not quite sure as to why i have this sudden surge of interest in politics, but then i do feel it good!

About me in politics, i am a big zero at it, but honestly and sincerely trying to update myself! Trust Me! Its just that, there was this best friend of mine (Lets name him Mr.X) who was talking to me one fine morning about the forthcoming elections (Or rather... the elections happening today). I cut him off short saying that, am not a politics person and his jargons means nothing to me and that am least bothered about the party which is going to rule. I believe that i was quite harsh with it, because, i did find Mr. X getting momentarily hurt! I did not realize that poor Mr.X was only trying to make me understand that its something thats interesting and that which has to be known by every Indian citizen, as we are liable to know who rules us and what reforms they establish! But then, too good that he was, he just made a simple statement after my 'persistent deliberate ignorance'. He told me, "Alright Sunitha.. Your call! I just wanted you to know what was happening in the nation.. that is all..." I was not quite happy that day after the conversation with Mr.X. Invariably i neglected the thought and carried on with my life with the same enthusiasm. [I know, i understand that i am useless... :)]

Two days back, Mr.X and me.. was having our routine conversation, about our life's daily updates and that was when... the 2011 elections crept back into the picture...! This time, there was no pressure at all, he was just talking about the pros and cons of the ruling and the opposition party...! There was this sudden spark in me to reply to him for every of his statement. But then, that was when i noticed that, i did not have a single point to make. I was not reticent, but then... i was forced to be! Why? It was because, i simply did not know the purpose of the State Assembly elections... did not know about the Parliament, Houses in the Parliament... President.... Prime Minister... terms at office.. reforms... and so on! [Gosh! I was indeed bad in civics.. at 10th grade in school :D]

Now this, created that needed spark in me. I realized that i had been a complete dunce and had not even tried to participate in any of these! I had conveniently shunned myself away from all these facts. [Thank god, that i know who the Indian President & Prime Minister are :D]. From that very second, i started following the news articles and the paper as to whats happening across India... TN elections... Campaigns.... The analysis as to which party is dominant... and so on.. [Not that i know the inside out of it.. but at least, i know a few parties contesting, the alliances to them and the leader of the party :D:P].

There, Mr.X and me.. had our daily conversation yesterday and lo.. i was at least able to nod my head and give him my side of views about the elections happening. Our conversation was on 49 O yesterday. [49 0 - I vote Nobody]. When we were talking on it, Mr.X as always educated me..! [He is known for it... :) and now.. am liking it] He asked me reason behind the ruling party promoting the concept of 49 O. I had no answer.. and i sincerely admitted it.. It was then, he gave me this interesting piece of insight.

"This ruling party promotes it, coz... the people who think on casting the 49 O are the literates [IT population, to be specific]. Now, if the literates, go about casting the 49 O, the support for the pre-dominant opposition would marginally come down.. and thus, the success is for the ruling party again!".

It was after this that i thought, that the piece of information was indeed something that needed to be thought over! Yes...! What strategy... It was indeed brilliant..!

After these many years, i feel that i have wasted my votes [Including the current one :( ]. I actually feel really bad about it. But then, from now on i have decided to do this responsible duty as a citizen.

I owe a lot to Mr. X, he was the one who induced this spark in me and educated me on the same. At least the next time, i would cast my vote for Mr.X who has been really instrumental for this change in me.

I hope all of you, reading this post have cast your votes and proved to be a responsible citizen! If not, please do it at the earliest :)