Wednesday, November 11, 2015

India-poor and corrupt

The previous governments have made the middle and upper classes  believe that India is almost a developed economy and a super power. There are people here who believe India is the third or so largest economy in the world! What is the ground reality?

About 50% Indians defecate in the open (626 million Indians do not have a toilet!) 25-30% of the entire population lives below poverty line. 300-360 million Indians live with Rs20/- (about 30 cents) a day. They do not have a square meal a day, a dwelling, water-supply or sanitation. They sleep in ramshackle huts or on pavements or in slums or in blighted areas. Another 30% live on the brink of the poverty line. The rural folks, the vast majority of whom are peasants, are all emaciated without adequate nutrition, health care or sanitation.  

Infant and maternal mortality rates are very high. One out of two children suffers from malnutrition; they are sick or stunted. Women are the worst sufferers. Being a patriarchal society they are suppressed,   they cannot select a career or decide their fate. Almost 50% of them are illiterate and two-thirds are confined to the four walls of the house producing children and working from early morning to late night. The urban women who land up in a job have to work double: at the office and at the house. Thus half of the Indian citizens do not partake in nation building.  How can a country progress in this scenario?

India houses more of the poorest and more of the hungry stomachs of the world than any other nation. More children are stunted or emaciated here than anywhere else. Still the priorities of the central government had been elsewhere. Our defense spending had been one of the highest in the world.  Still India is nowhere near the defense capability of China. A considerable percentage of the entire money has gone to the pockets of the concerned politicians. Massive weapon buying had been initiated by the rulers seemingly for the kickbacks.

 The funds earmarked for the poverty alleviation programs landed up in the pockets of the politicians and the public servants. The black money in foreign banks got built up every day. India has a huge bureaucracy which is corrupt to the core as they follow the Congress leaders. No wonder India is ranked as one of the most corrupt nations. Wrong priorities of the government had been in themselves suicidal!

When half the population was illiterate and below poverty line the government was sending rockets to the moon to find out whether water existed there! They exploded crude nuclear devices and spent billions on weapons which become useless in a short time as they were sourced wrongly from socialist nations like USSR for kickbacks. No significant effort was done to contain population increase, or to empower women. And the educated middle class was made to believe India was advanced, progressive and powerful!           

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