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I found it very hard to write on this topic. I did not know what to write. Regarding dream for India, I feel everyone has the same dream – Get rid of all the evils like blind beliefs, population, corruption and uplift the poor people.
Let me recount some instances in US that made me realize what we have already achieved:
Instance 1 –
I met this uncle when I took a seat next to him on one of my flights.
Man: Are you from India?
Man: I love India. I had visited India once. Where are you from India?
Me: I am from the southern part of it
Man: I had visited Delhi, Bangalore, Calcutta, Varanasi. I like the people there. They are very courteous, very nice people.
Me: Yeah that is true. We are friendly people
Man: Bangalore was such a beautiful city, with such a nice weather. How is India now? I had visited back in 1980s
Me: It has drastically changed. Pollution, population and corruption are making it hard to survive.
Man: Do you people have trouble understanding our English?
Me: Not exactly. We have very good English background. It is usually the first language in our schools. It is also the language we use in the professional world – colleges/offices, almost everywhere these days. But the accent is British.
Man: You people are so good at technology now. I heard Bangalore is the Silicon valley of India.
Me: Yes sir. I am really proud of that. We indeed are growing technologically.
Instance 2 –
I met this woman at a pizza joint when we both were standing there waiting for the pizza we had ordered.
Woman: Are you from India?
Woman: I always wanted to visit India. How is India?
Me: India is good.
Woman: I heard there are no schools there. I heard it is a very poor country.
Me: No maam. It was a poor country when British gave us independence. But not anymore. We have very good education system. The primary education we get is as good as you will find in any other country.We have lot of schools now and almost everyone attends school.
Woman: I heard nobody knows English there?
Me: It is actually the opposite. Now almost everyone knows English and we study English in school as the first language. I know English much better than my own mother tongue.
Woman: Wow. That is amazing. How long has it been since you people got independence? Not long right?
Me: We just got independence around 60 years back and in such a short time we have made a lot of progress.
Woman: Just 60 years! I cannot believe. All that I see in movies is a poor India where most of the people have nothing to wear or eat. I thought education was something that was impossible to get there.
Now what do you people feel? In the past, people had one mission: get independence but after getting independence, are we making a good use of it? I really hate it when someone compares my country with some country which has been independent from some 300 years or more. We are as good as a newly born country because we were under some rulers (Muslim, British) all the time.
I feel we have achieved a LOT in a very short time. But we still need to achieve more. I think unless people get educated and learn good manners, we cannot achieve what we have been dreaming to achieve. With education, more people will get the sense of right and wrong. If we have educated people in top positions, we will see a brighter future for everyone. Corruption can be uprooted if people become ethical and have some morality.
My dream: 100% literacy. This will solve almost all the problems.
I like these dialogues a lot from the movie Rang De Basanti :
“Koi bhi country perfect nahin hota, usey perfect banana padta hai!! politics join karo..police mein bharthi ho jao..IAS bano” [No country is perfect. We have to make it perfect. Join politics, police department, become an IAS officer and make this country perfect!!]
“Zindagi jine ke do tarekke hote hain..ek jo ho raha hai hone do..bardasht karte jao..aur dusra ..Zimedaari uthao use badlne ki!” [There are two ways to lead life.. one of the ways is to tolerate all the bad things that are happening and the other way is to take some responsibility to change it!]
A perfect example of this is my friend to whom I want to dedicate this post. He left a high paying software job, took IAS exam and is now an IAS officer. He also got 2nd rank in IAS exam (all over India). You know why he did that? Just to improve India, not for himself. If more people like him contribute to this country, there is nothing like it. On this note, I conclude my post on this.
“Victory attained by violence is tantamount to a defeat, for it is momentary.” by Mahatma Gandhi.
Pic courtesy: http://www.google.com