I recently visited India, and as everybody knows was amazed by the optimism of the young Indian Professionals. They work hard, six days a week, and speak of India overtaking the world. Yet I cannot but feel that this exuberance is overblown, perhaps created by Indian media. The young middle class Indians feel they are at par with America. Yet here are the things that my Western eyes found are hindrances to its growth.
Population and Poverty—- The Young Indian Professional is completely blind to the millions of people barely subsisting on the “other side of the track.” In Mumbai, there were blind children begging for a morsel of food from a fat middle aged women holding some fried pakoras. She promptly got into her car and her husband nearly ran over the little girl. Yes, I know that beggar kids are a business in Mumbai, and you can avoid them; but do you have to be mean? The haves simply do not even recognize the existence of the have nots. I would vote any day for China’s one child policy.
Traffic—- Everyone gets a car, no one builds roads. The traffic jam situation is horrible. So are the dirty roads. Strangely India is more kind to their stray animals than people. Cows, dogs, monkeys, people just live, eat, defecate on the roads creating health hazards galore.
Expectations—- India has money. Yet the conditions are so bad. We in the US would complain bitterly and not accept these conditions and thus they would not happen. yet people in India take this lying down. Whatever money India has is enough to build roads, feed people, etc. But it is being stolen by corrupt politicians and their innumerable ‘meetings”. I was in Kolkata for 4 days. In one of those days there was a massive rally in the center of the town, paralyzing the traffic in the City. There was no elections coming up. I was told they have this situation at least every 15 days. Yet the corrupt politician get away with almost everything fueled by money from rich business people. Unless this is stopped, India will never achieve first world status.
As someone once said, “china is rising because of their Government, India is rising despite their Government.” If this is the price of democracy, to hell with it. Self Government cannot be condoned for Corrupt Government.