Aug 26, 2010

In a Jam, not yet a Pickle

I used to have this recurring nightmare of getting stuck in a traffic jam where I would be stuck for an entire day.
But when I got to read about the epic jam in the Beijing-Tibet expressway, it was a real feeling of dread and a bad premonition that I could be stuck in one in Bangalore very soon.
After all, our politicians have been trying to turn Bangalore into a Singapore. I don't know if they're still working on it. But I guess, their sights were more on making Bangalore into a Bangladesh.
Over-filling drains, power shortages, traffic snarls, we seem to have all of it here.

In a larger picture, India is an enigma!
How on earth did a nation in the hands of such scrupulous people at the top manage to survive and better still capture the hearts and attention of the modern traveler and businessman?
A country that is ravaged by nature and man has managed to keep itself alive despite all odds.

We have such brilliant examples of ingenuity and talent.
We have contributed such awe inspiring people and ideas to humanity.
Yet...

The 'epic jam' however lasted for more than a month.

The pickle that we as a nation are in have lasted for several decades now.

A will that has been weakened by centuries of political plundering, our society is slowly loosing its grip on the future. The politicians here hurry to amass obscene amounts of wealth so fast that it looks like greed is going out of style!

What surprises me is that there is a growing resentment among my peers, tax payers who are educated, independent and honest. While they acknowledge that the system needs to change, what exasperates them is the fact that not many people will walk the talk when it comes to the D Day. A packet of food, some cheap alcohol and few hundred rupees is all it takes to lure our rural folk en mass to the Polling booth.

Don't blame the rains (or the lack of it) because if Israel (a arid land) could make its soil lush, I am pretty sure, India can do better.

It is a vicious cycle, actually.
India has never been poor. Actually, measure by measure, pound by pound India has held more wealth and lured more people in history than all the other countries put together.

Farmers will milk politicians when elections approach.
Politicians will wash, lick and dry the unmentionables of their voters until they get elected.
Once in power, they will do all that they can to either stay in power or to make enough wealth and connections to last a few generations.
Did someone say farmer suicides? Well, what goes around comes around. Come elections, all will be forgotten and forgiven. Bed the enemy.

What we need is a new breed of statesman.

Someone who will learn from lessons past and not be complacent.
Someone who will understand how corruption breeds an society that is ill.
Someone who will have the gall to stamp out bureaucracy and bring in accountability.
Someone who will resist being a puppet in the hands of higher sinister powers.
A person who will not only be eloquent in speech but effective in action too.

In short, we need someone who will talk the talk and walk the walk.
We need help!
Lest we be known as a 'Epic Fail'

Nowadays, I have different nightmares.
No, its not about snakes and ghouls but the impending sense of doom that my kids will face in a Nation that refuses to grow up.
Its not a pretty picture and I hope we don't live long enough to face their wrath and answer their scathing questions.
Sorry kids, we screwed you.
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