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Happy Independence Day India! A Critical Survey  
User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1590 times:

58 yrs ago, on August 15, 1947, "When the World was sleeping, India awakened" (something like that were Nehru's words"). These are some thoughts. They are individual brainstormed thoughts I just wrote down in one go; they are NOT representative! you might see that I often go against the mainstream

A black chapter of history finally found its end. For hundreds of years, our resources were robbed and used for manufacturing processes in the country of the colonial administration, depriving India of its wealth. A lot of indigenous knowledge was lost. Many people were imprisoned and killed in a mostly peaceful resistance. The Jewel of the Crown was lost.

Against popular perceptions, our 58 yrs thus far can be summarized as success story. Democracy was never really endangered. India produces a food surplus, despite difficult climate conditions. The state never fell apart. India had managed to accommodate linguistic, religious, ethnic, tribal etc.. Minorities within one nation!

India had remained neutral in its foreign policy (Nehru's Non-aligned aspirations were just brilliant! However, it is sad to see how the two big Powers tried to drag everyone into their conflict). India was the nation going most for disarmament. Unfortunately, China attacked us in 1962, leading to necessity of the creation of a strong army. India always promoted nuclear disarmament and wanted the WHOLE world to be nuclear-free, but the P5 (US, Russia, China, France and Britain) wanted to keep a monopoly for nuclear weapons and still makes the world more insecure with their power aspirations. Unfortunately, we decided to test our own bombs, leading to a new cascade effect (I am one of about 1 % Indians against who was against these tests). India had tried her best for piece and good relations, but the big Powers were not really interested. They wanted to poison the world with their own dogmas and a new form of imperialism. Since India remained neutral, foreign policies directed towards us were rather insane. The involvement of some nations in Afghanistan and the short-sighted support of our neighbor has made the continent instable. Terrorism, partly sponsored by the powers of our neighbor (NOT the people, they are brilliant!) will NEVER defeat us! It will collapse soo, and hopefully we will be able to have good relations within South Asia and beyond.

India had great leaders. Nehru wanted to cease imperialism worldwide, wanted to stay neutral and was interested in good relations with all nations. Unfortunately, this great man only was a dreamer. Still, he was the symbol for India's stability, well-admired in India and abroad. He managed to (re)define India's new nation and give some meaning for the post-colonial period. Indira Gandhi finally made India a regional power, after realizing that India was surrounded by enemies. She made the economy strong (the green revolution- though you can argue about this, as no real land reforms took place), she further promoted the growth of the own industry. It was good that India did not liberalize the economy from the beginning on, because India had a big comparative disadvantage against the West and needed to create its own industry and economy (and strengthen its agriculture). Otherwise, the Indian market would have fallen into the control of the West again. It was very important in the first instance that India mobilized her own resources, supported her own industry and agriculture before engaging in adventures like free trade. Of course, Mrs Gandhi had her negative sides, too (keyword Khalistan, Emergency) I do not want to emphasize on. Now, we have Manmohan Singh, one of the most brilliant politicians worldwide. I have full trust in him. I noted with happiness that India said NO to this BJP-led right-wing circus.. democracy has reached the grassroots..

Since 1991, India is growing. India is a symbol for High-tech, skilled manpower etc.. India will be the 3rd strongest economy in 2020 - it is progressing. But is everything really so great? I see the caste system still existing in the heads of the people - especially in the heads of the new rich upper middle class. These people treat poor people very badly, employ them as cheap labor and underpay them - hardly give them air to breath and treat them like slaves. These people think they possess them and do not want to share the new wealth the have acquired. I am shocked to see how bad my own countrypeople deal with their own countrypeople sometimes. This new urban upper middle class - the wannabee Americans - are the real danger for the country. They hardly contribute anything for the development of the nation and poverty eradication. They want the status-quo to pertain, so that they can keep their own slaves and do not have to share their welfare.

On the other side, I am noting with great happiness that many things continue to be positive. Poverty is on the demise. The fight against corruption is being more successful day by day. Checks and balances are improving. People discuss about everything. The media and press is free and critical (very critical against the own government!), very rich and elaborate. Democracy is not endangered. India is the home for many minorities and has a very liberal refugee policy. One has to be here with the heart, and one loves it. Never try to comprehend India.. you will fail! People come back here, and many people never want to leave. Many great people live here. We are happy that we still manage to produce enough food and don't have severe droughts, despite this brutal climate and having more than ! Billion people. And... we are happy to be part of the future. We need to clean up a lot of things in our own house - but we do not want to surrender our market to MNCs! We do not really need any foreign aid, we will be able to manage ourselves. And I am sure we will manage. We want to be part of globalization but do not want to surrender our identity and culture, please respect this. So, you might disagree with me 100 %, but let us agree one the following I want to say:

HAPPY 58th INDEPENDENCE DAY! India remains a great nation! Let's all work towards a better future and let us all have good relations!

[Edited 2005-08-15 07:03:18]

[Edited 2005-08-15 07:08:12]

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineKlaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21468 posts, RR: 53
Reply 1, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 1569 times:

Happy independence day indeed!  bigthumbsup 

From over here India often looks beautiful but strange, chaotic and sometimes even frightening... Too few reports give a broader overview of what´s currently going on.


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31684 posts, RR: 56
Reply 2, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 1566 times:

Well written Subin.
India is a Country which is so diverse.Every Place looks like a different world,with Different cultures,different languages & different climates.And all this diversity made it the Worlds largest democracy  bigthumbsup 

Congrats INDIA.

regds
MEL



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineANCFlyer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1548 times:

Happy Independence Day to India and the Indian A-Netters!!!

Great Post Subin!  thumbsup 


User currently offlineDL021 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 11447 posts, RR: 75
Reply 4, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1545 times:
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Happy Independence Day to India!

They have proven that democracy can work in that region.



Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1538 times:

Happy Independence Day.

May India's politicians be trotted out and lynched, and may the billions hoarded by these thugs be rightfully returned to the people.


User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1531 times:

Quoting Jaysit (Reply 5):
May India's politicians be trotted out and lynched, and may the billions hoarded by these thugs be rightfully returned to the people.

In fact, I forgot to emphasize a little on corruption:

The big difference of India to other so-called developing countries is that the rule of law works - in theory.

Unfortunately, many people do not know about their rights or about the legal remedy (not to talk about the rotten courts, who take 15 yrs plus for property cases etc..). This is an obstacle towards the fight against corruption - the level of corruption here is a shame - at every level, from the local to teh national. Once, the head of teh ruling party was filmed while taking bribes. Tehelka, the newspaper, "arranged" all this.

India should pass draconian laws against corruption and start to investigate pro-actively. I know this might sound logical but is difficult to implement, but many of these bloody officials have deprived the people of their resources. Luckily, we have Manmohan Singh as PM.. if there is someone I have hope in to tackle these issues (he is the absolut ANTICORRUPT person), then it is him

Things are improving, but too slowly!


User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1524 times:

Quoting Mrniji (Reply 6):
Things are improving, but too slowly!

Frankly, if the crumbling infrastructure of Mumbai is any example, things seem to be getting worse.

Mumbai's politicians are a rapacious ugly lot who are hell bent on becoming Orientalist despots and have created their own personal coffers by robbing tax payers dry.

This city's citizens - probably some of the most enterprising and driven of any city in the world - are represented by a bunch of thieves and scoundrels who provide then with nothing. This is a perverted version of democracy.


User currently offlineCornish From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 8187 posts, RR: 54
Reply 8, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1523 times:

Happy Independence Day India.

Guess that's a good excuse for me to have a nice curry tonight  yummy 

hopefully my new job should see me getting some India trips at last. can't wait !



Just when I thought I could see light at the end of the tunnel, it was some B*****d with a torch bringing me more work
User currently offlineOmoo From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1522 times:

Great Article man. Good read.

User currently offlineJaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1506 times:

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
This new urban upper middle class - the wannabee Americans - are the real danger for the country. They hardly contribute anything for the development of the nation and poverty eradication.

These people are among the few in India (less than 5% of India's population) that pay income taxes. The urban middle class in Mumbai pay Rs. 12,000 crores annually in income tax. They get back about Rs 100 crores in return. The urban middle class in Mumbai alone pay 35% of ALL the taxes in India. I think that's a pretty damn good contribution.

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
India had remained neutral in its foreign policy (Nehru's Non-aligned aspirations were just brilliant! However, it is sad to see how the two big Powers tried to drag everyone into their conflict).

But Nehru was hardly non-alligned. His Minister for Foreign Affairs, Krishna Menon was a pro-Soviet, anti-US blowhard and attention hog who single-handedly ruined Indo-US relations for the years to come (it turns out that he wasn't immune to that socialist habit of sending his kids to the US to be educated at the taxpayer's expense either). Under this Nehruvian "non-alligned" policy, India couldn't even bring itself to condemn the Soviet-led subjugation of Hungary and Czechoslovakia, let alone the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the '80s.

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
She made the economy strong (the green revolution- though you can argue about this, as no real land reforms took place), she further promoted the growth of the own industry.

I disagree.
The green revolution was an international venture with massive outlays from the US paid for by foreign aid and loans. She certainly implemented it well, though. But as far as Indian industry goes, she perpetuated and enshrined the wretched license-raj system, and did nothing to change it, largely because her largest donors were industrial houses like the Birlas who benefited immensely from the license-Raj system. While countries like South Korea, Taiwan and even Thailand industrialized rapidly, Mrs Gandhi kept the country in a vice-like socialist grip. Yeah, she was a class act when she travelled overseas and could speak fluent French with DeGaulle, but that didn't help the nation one damned bit.

Quoting Mrniji (Thread starter):
I see the caste system still existing in the heads of the people - especially in the heads of the new rich upper middle class.

It exists virtually all over India, except in a few enclaves in Bombay or other big metro cities. While it's more egregious in the North, even the South isn't immune to it. Even Kerala with all the societal advances made by its Communist govts did little to tinker too much with the caste system (Arundhati Roy's "God of Small Things" does a wonderful job in subtly, yet powerfully, exposing the incongruities that exist in Kerala).

The best thing about India is the warmth of its people. It's totally heartfelt.

That and chaat.


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