Sunday, September 30, 2007

Swades

We are a proud people…Proud of our culture and values…Admittedly our values are the best on paper...though questionable how much we practice it…Quite often the pride sometimes lean towards arrogance and disdain for other cultures. I used to smirk at western culture and habits without actually thinking about it and rather more based on a stigma. But over the past year I understand that there are many things which we should appreciate and learn from them…Would love to share a few things where we are lacking and would do wonders if we pulled our socks...

One of the striking things that I found here is that they follow discipline…for example you don’t see cars jumping lanes or anyone horning superfluously. When the traffic light turns red , all the cars line up in the respective lanes in a military harmony...Our system would do a lot good if people are trained not just how to drive…but also how to drive within the framework of RULES. Probably there is not one among us who haven’t jumped the lane one time or the other. And we all have a plausible explanation that everyone does it neways…The license should be issued only after sufficient training , the police must be given rights for harsher punishment on law breakers and more importantly the public should understand how we could infact move much faster and comfortably if all followed the rules..

Talking about traffic I couldn’t help but mention our system of having a police convey for every dumb wit… why do our ministers/MLA’s have to break all the rules, blast sirens , create unnecessary hullabaloo. .and drive in screeching hurry...As if a minute delay might bring all the developments in the state to a standstill… Do we need such special privileges for special people..

Cleanliness…Our attitude says we keep our home clean…Everywhere outside our home is our garbage bin…Why can’t we bother to keep our surroundings clean as well... We teach our kids to keep our country clean without ourselves doing a bit about it…Littering is probably a national pastime for many of us...Is there any penalty for littering in our place…forget it.. Is there anyone who can bother to impose it…Such basic civic sense would help a lot and make life easier for the garbage disposers…


Perfection in work...Although we are fast working industrious people…quite often the quality of our products are questionable. I mean here, people make sure that starting from a safety pin to an aircraft the products they make are of the best quality in the world. I heard from a German colleague that the simple motto behind how a German worker creates a product is “To find a mistake in the product”. This work philosophy has ensured that they don’t make any junk products…We have our limitations of a developing economy but still we can make sure that we don’t go the China way…
(P.S. Two Wal-Mart’s at my place had to be closed down recently. Probably coz the predominantly Chinese products wouldn’t sustain the law which states that any product sold in Germany has to provide a minimum warranty of two years.)
Although we have few companies which create world class products, they are sold to the west rather than for the domestic market. I don’t get a clue why the companies serving domestic market do the same.. Deep dent on the profits...eh??


I personally appreciate the noble intention behind Tata’s attempt to bring out the 1 lakh car…but I would have loved if he would have invested that money in some mass transport metro network in a few cities…Our environment is not healthy enough to suffice the surge in pollution nor our roads which already cannot bear the mad race .I wonder when the 1 lakh car is out in the market will we fall into a point of no return.. The cheap car will sure be a big hit in the market where the real price will be paid our next generations..


The obscene big political thamasha. I might face lot of brickbats for this...But the whole idea of state/national governments giving monetary soaps to cricketers’ sucks!!... Are our government coffers overflowing money that they are clueless about how to spend em...If these political pawars (err...powers) suffered from momentary loss of sight please do look at our roads..our slums...and our rivers…The days of fighting for independence was over long time back...please stop all the bull shit rhetoric you say in those speeches...biggest democracy…peaceful co-existence of religions..blah..blah…get down to some serious work dudes…Unfortunately unlike us they have a appraisal only once is five years and they always get a role change by then!!

Why don’t we just dispose of with the whole caste system...Let us pass a decree one fine day
that there aint any castes among us...Well they cant do it coz that leaves 60% of our parties without a cause!!…Just how much effort and blood is spilt just for the silly name tag called “caste”...And don’t assume that making people literate and educated shuns these prejudices…Coz I have seen a friend of mine in trouble marrying his love coz the so called “castes” are different (both families are well educated folks)…

I can list out a 100 places where we can improve...so easy to write it and yet difficult to follow enmass..Probably I crib like this coz I love as much to see my country in a better shape…India is rising and shinning ...we are a huge growing economy…but remember all these sweet talk is about getting a share of the pie...It takes a lot more from than a “chak de” from each one of us to make us a prosperous and developed nation..

21 comments:

ap said...

Lets hope for the best and give something back to our country...

Adorable Pancreas said...

Cricket...I saw the lavishly extarvagant ceremony they conducted to applaud the team after the T20 win. Waste of money we don't have, I thought.

We used to have this picture in our Civics book, one lady cleaning her home and dumping the waste on the road.

is our country going to the dogs? I don't know, but it sure looks that way. How else do you explain our best brains getting out of the country? The ones who stay and try to do something are hounded. Got that from Nariyal Chutney. I wish we could all do something, but what?

Superficial Gibbering prater said...

nice thoughts....unfortunately india's "reformers" are the burgeoning middle class....made up of Non Returning Indians....who only like to talk of their frustration in blogs(Me included...)

~==[[[ Abhi ]]]==~ said...

The evergrowing Indian population is not focussing on conserving for the future and is turning India into a dog eat dog world! We've seen Indian corporates capturing world leaders, but then this isn't helping the avg Indian in anyway! Govt is blaming the corporates, thy blame the govt and it goes on like a vicious circle!

Mishmash ! said...

You re wearing that "serious" coat again! :)Well, discipline, bandh-free, procession-free life, rules, cleanliness, some of the many things which we learn and appreciate after living abroad....sometimes I wish I could get best of both the worlds...a wishful thinking right!

Shn

Rupinion said...

Good thoughts..hope they come true...
But, to add on, just a little thought...
If you thought its only the "street dogs" that bark and fight for a meal...lets try to leave those pet puppies hungry for a couple of days and then decide to call those barking ones "street dogs"...

Rockus said...

Great post!

starry nights said...

Good write up Mathew. I am sure these things have crossed our minds I know it has mine.Nobody says anything and just sits back, as long as the trash is not in my home, why bother.You are right in saying mass transport would be more beneficial. with global warming and stuff, there are already too many cars on the road.

silverine said...

When I saw the hero's reception for the Cricketers I thought I would burst a blood vessel. What is wrong with our people? This is a new unspoilt team. Do they want to make them complacent like the old horses? And the money being lavished by govts on people already rolling in money makes me sick!! I was mad and this post made me madder :p

People have stopped thinking. Their political/caste/religious heads do the thinking for them. We do not think as a nation. Unless we think as a nation we are not going anywhere!!

Di said...

Cleanliness and the caste system are on my pet peeve list too :-/ I really think castes and religions are wonderful wen they bring about unique traditions, quaint ways of celebrations and all the diversity that makes our nation so rich..but as a means for furthering senseless political ambitions and segregating society it just makes me mad :-/

Keshi said...

what a patriotic post Matty! Well done!

Keshi.

Cuckoo said...

We all think what can be done but we ourselves are at fault. We don't want to do it. The attitude of 'everybody is doing it wrong, why should I be the one to correct it' is the main culprit.

All of us think that it is someone else's job to correct the things, we can only crib.

Cleanliness?? Why can't we behave the way we behave in foreign countries.. putting wastes in trash cans ? Who stops us ? But still we just have our snacks/chicklets & throw the wrapper on the road.

You know what? I carry these wrappers with me till I find a dustbin and ppl around me laugh at me. I care a damn.

The small things go a long way.

lemonade said...

loved the post!

Nanditha Prabhu said...

it was a thought provoking post , mathew.i think there are a whole lot of us who think in these terms .. but are handicapped when it comes to doing something about it.

Naveen said...

your oservations are spot on .... but most of us see only the external problems ... being a govt servant myself i've had the opportunity to see the system at close range ..... the governance and administration structure is rotten beyond our wildest imaginations ..... i cannot explain here the pain one feels while talking about it ....there is only one way out ....educated people with values should wriggle out of their safe-zones to help the country ... be prepared to suffer ... join the public services, exercise your RTI rights .... & most importantly vote... perhaps wwhat we actually need is a good leader who can regenerate our passions and motivate us to do all this ...

Ajith said...

There is a book "Games Indians Play" -- by Prof : Raghunathan ( ex- IIMA prof )..he has explained lot of cases like this jumping of queues and all thats specific to our culture in an interesting way .. Check that :)

mathew said...

@AP
exactly...

@Adorable Pancreas
One more AP out here.. ;-P
I think brain drain is a problem..But this post was about some very Indian habits which we could improve upon..The whole hullabao over T-20 victory was atrocious..

@SGP
mm..that’s the sad truth…

@Abhi
I think we have enough poor people who will be more bothered about having a square meal a day rather than about our environment..it is all a vicious circle..

@Mishmash!
Athe..it is really difficult to get the best of both..But I think if Japan and Singapore can do it..why not us too..

@Rupinion
yeah..that’s a valid point..Maybe it is too much to ask for..

@Rockus
thanks.

@Starry Nights
yeah..we need more mass transport systems than one lakh cars on our roads..

mathew said...

@Anjali
well..it is showing results now..when every place they go for felicitations by our politicians and lose the next match…I wished atleast this bunch lads had the fire..

@Di
Yeah..our diversity is our beauty..but it raises its ugly head quite often these days..i hate all those caste politicians…

@Keshi
thanks..

@Cuckoo
Yeah..If we try to throw somethin in a dustbin..people either make fun..or blame that we are too weternised..neither helps our cause..

@Lemonade
thanks..

@Nanditha
Well I guess what I wrote is something which all think about..It is much harder to implement them…

@Naveen
exactly..I think we lack leaders..in the real sense..all are leaders of own parties..none of them are the leaders of the nation..I understand how difficult it is for you to see the rot daily..thanks for the insights..

@Ajith
Let me try to get hand on that when I come home next time..thanks.. :-)

Venkatesh A.R. said...

1. Regarding why people compromise on quality, there exists a huge disparity in economics of people in India. So low price items walk their way thru markets..
same is not the case in developed countries.. atleast the disparity levels are not anywhere near India and the so-called developing countries.
2. Regarding why Tata's did not invest in public transport.. not sure if you might have heard that once upon a time, transport in Tamil Nadu was handled by the TVS group. During that time, transport was pakka!! punctuality was to the mark!! Government interference put a fullstop to it.. Why would the Tata's want to venture with so much interference from the govt.?
3. Regarding why pawars spending on cricket.. well, it's because the BCCI is overflowing with money.. not necessarily the govt.. the govt. has actually announced "comparitively" lesser cash prizes .. however, reason why they have given is for publicity, what else!!
Ultimately, the rich gets richer in India, and the poor is getting poorer.. disparity is widenning.. if this can be bridged, then probably a couple of centuries later India might rise better!! :-)

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