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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Sixty third birthday!

The nation shall be sixty three tomorrow. But where are we? Have we as a nation arrived on the international scene? Are we an economic power? Have we been able to provide the basic necessities of "Roti", "Kapda" and "Makan" to all our citizens? Have we achieved a respectable rank on the human development index? and finally are Indians, really happy?

The answers are a big NO. No, No, No, No and NO.

We are a nation, in the capital of which one witnesses abject poverty, where electricity and water are in short supply almost everywhere including the capital city of New Delhi. A nation where beggers are aplenty and people live on the streets in substantial numbers. But we are also a nation that is an atomic power, that launches rockets and is also home to the wealthiest man on the planet.

A nation of stark contrasting realities. That is what we are at sixty three!

While we are not a failed state like many of the banana republics, but we are also not a state that has passed with distinction. There are shortages and there is chaos, but an abundance of corruption that touches every aspect of the lives of almost all its citizens, excepting those who are either super rich or really powerful like our politicians and the bureaucrats.

Yes, it is true but unfortunate that India has emerged as a nation that is suitable only for these two classes, who either wield power or who are rich.

That is where we are at sixty three.

When we had our tryst with destiny sixty three years ago, we were like a five year old who has been let free. An immature child who has been ordained to take all decisions pertaining to his life. The child certainly will mess up his life and so have we as a nation. The mockery that we have managed to make of ourselves during this brilliant opportunity of commonwealth games is indicative of our sheer immaturity and inability to govern ourselves. While the mature converts a problem into an opportunity, the foolish and the immature convert opportunities into insurmountable problems and embarrassments.

What a shame. Yet I have hopes that at-least in its seventies, the nation would become and also behave like a respected adult of that age.

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