Nothing is perfect, not even India… rather India is far from perfect… It’s imperfect…
It’s a noisy place. The noise pervades everything, even if you stay in a high-rise and are on the 18th floor you still cannot get away from the daily humdrum… It can be the marriage party in the plot next to your building or it can be the procession in support of a particular political party or a religious procession or if not that the road passing thru’ next to your building emanates the irritating sound of honking and/or screeching tires… The noise level is so high that when people come for a visit from United States of America they are appalled at the sheer decibel level of noise, at times, I am sure; it exceeds the 80dB conventional limit. The problem is simple, people living in different surroundings have different base noise levels, but then you already know that don’t you?
Another problem that we have is the infrastructure… or rather the absence of it… Somebody once said the real India lives in the villages and I think that the real India still does. The only difference now is that they now stay in ‘towns’. The infrastructure is actually top-class. I mean everything roads, dams, bridges, nuclear reactors… everything. You can many a times look back in time when yo look at a construction site of one of these mega-structures (this is what National Geographic calls it…) as in the construction probably started a decade ago and now nearing completion it almost gives you a window to look into the past (e.g. Bandra-Worli Sealink). The structures are all good but then the good old rain comes and well the mega-structures stop being mega-structures and emerge as some unstructured construction. You’d think that the metropolitan cities are spared but that is not true… Bangalore probably has the most of all pot-holes… even my recent trip to Vadodara by car was marred insofar as I returned with a car which was 15 Kg. lighter… (all the nuts and bolts are still probably embedded in tar on some pot-holed road in Vadodara…) Some people have also been known to suddenly drop out of eyesight… The single most glaring gap in infrastructure is the ‘pot-holes’ (pun intended…)! They are everywhere, though the size my defer… it can range between a size small enough to lose a baby in to a size where you could probably build a pond in (couple of times the state govt. has taken advantage…) complete with peddle-boating facility (a love fostering effort – courtesy Govt.).
Poverty in India whether urban or rural is the one factor that defines the country and hits you in the face as soon as you leave any airport. What also strikes you is the disparity among the Rich and the Poor. What surprises me is how the progress has not yet translated in to basic infrastructure in the country.
Most of us have become quite oblivious to the state of the nation. We are just used to things not working. If the roads are broken we do not care. If our neighbor decides to throw garbage on the street, it is just fine. However what surprises me is if someone does mention something wrong with the country or a state all hell breaks lose and people tend to attack you. Enough is published about the growing economy and the miracle growth. However we can not keep harping about how many Indian doctors have left the country and migrated to the United States or how many foreign citizens of Indian origin have made it once they have left the country. I live in India; I am only concerned about the quality of life in India.
But in the end I would have to say that I love India. With all it’s imperfections it’s just that. Perfect. I have my own dreams, though.
Audio: India’s National Anthem
Dreams, they say, are the essence of life… Dreams are pretty famous too; One of the most inspiring speeches of all times starts with the golden words… ‘I dream…’ But today I’d like to say that I dream, I dream of greener times when India grows to a stage where
- India does not contributes to 25% of all Child deaths in the world…
- All Indians are able to afford a meal twice a day
- All Indians have access to safe drinking water
- Corruption reduces in India
- No caste-based violence happens
- Democracy actually brings good things to India rather than some portly, uneducated ministers…
Viva la India!
Oh & a very happy independence day to you too 🙂