Sunday, April 24, 2005

are we there yet? part 1

this one has been in my head for a hundred years.

every day in the morning it pleads to be written, i say, wait.

but i have to now or else this idea would just be another floating idea that has left me.

how profound an idea is, i dont know. i also dont know whether it makes any sense. but i shall be as i have always been, and lay this one on the board.

so here goes....

Are we there yet?

I wake up this morning feeling fresh to face the world. Just as every person on this side of the planet. the coffee mug fills with the dark caffeine drip, the login, the first email check of the day. and then it starts. Every indian news site gives u an impression of a changing india. Every western news site gives u the impression of eastward bound world. the numbers, the NRI centric indian portals, the BPO bound american companies, the economic parameters set to define where the world is headin, everyone points towards us. Should we feel special? Or is this yet another imperial move to rob us in daylight ( or actually nite)

I think, the news is where the money is, far from the times where the news was the news was, a story about the north, the east, the west, and the south ( which is how news got its name or so i thought) But then i think the world probably has gotten over its anti-asian feel, the so called third world syndrome. Now everyone sees the worth in us, that we actually are the news. Globalization picks up more than half the slack. But there is more than meets the eye on this one.

Two Asian Giants ,India and China : One third of all humanity , screams one headline.
Our population is a huge liability, screams another.

To me this is how ironic news gets. But upon further soul searching this is also the truth. The sole reason we are the news is the power that lies in our numbers. You just cannot afford to ignore the numbers any longer. The two headlines were however talking about different
populations, one fact hard to ignore is thats how huge our population is. One one side we have this platitude of never ending professionals, who somehow manage to flood the environment.

They came, they saw, they clicked, and then they move on. Thats what we have at one end. The other end is the lot who somehow manage to miss the big picture. The archaic ones who seem to have managed to get themselves in this time warp, that they dont see time move one any longer. Thats why when rediff author mentions, Why are so many Indians poor ?( we hear a silent sigh among readers, and then the next story. This is the population the second headline screams at when we identify our liability. The truth does lie somewhere in the middle.

The role of Evolution.

Evolution has played a significant role in the way things have lined up for india and indians all over. You might have remembered stories of how tuff times were when you grandfather was around in India, stories of how he walked 5 miles to work every day wearing no slippers, so that
you could be where you are now. To me thats a huge interpolation, but it helps to know how you got here without the details. Generations of indians have been doing enuf ground work to see to it that we are here now. Its a mixture of everything, Gandhi, 1947, Socialism, the Indian
railways, Pakistan, Elections, Indira, Emergency. Those to me were the seeds of the generation we see today. Thats where we started, setting our house in order, seeing to it that we had our basic sense of ethos firmly engrained in our minds. Today all those events might just be a
bunch of jokes, or real distant memories. We might even forward a few laughs on Gandhi to our friends. But in each one of our indian minds, we know of a hurtful past, that we seek security in every thing we do now. So when we see 43.8 for a dollar or 60 for a euro, it may make no sense for a brit or an American, but generations worth of brick laying for us.

We know.

So how big have we become? I read in a news article a few days ago, NRIs contribute more to the Indian Economy than the IT sector. That includes the migrant laborer who sends back every dirham to his family in india, to the dollar that a Bay Area professional sends to his savings account. Our foreign exchange reserves have never been this high, thats what the news says. What the government does with it, noone knows. Might be the same old archaic babu sending it home.

more tomorrow


Blogger Nox said...

Once again a good read, I didn't think it would be appropriate to type in a lot in the comments section. Hence in response to your blog, I have put up something on mine. check it out if u find time.

9:45 PM  

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