Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Indifference, not corruption, is India's most threatening malady - Rediff.com News

Inside a shopping mall in Mumbai
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This year, we celebrate twenty years of the liberalisation of India's economy. Liberalisation ended the stifling License Raj system and redefined the great Indian middle class. It ostensibly gave many, many Indians the power to chase their dreams.

But it also helped in creating a splintered nation of hundreds of thousands of haves and hundreds of millions of have-nots. Those who had some, have much more now. Those who had nothing, still don't.

A lot has been written about the two Indias that exist together, but we, the Young India and the Not-so-Young India, often pretend that the Other India doesn't exist.

It does exist, and will continue to do so even when people like us want to wish it away, even when people like us look the other way.

People like us who build our lives around acquiring the latest iPad or the next high-end mobile phone.

People like us who spend our entire lives in pursuit of bigger flats or bigger cars.

People like us who are willing to spend more in a weekend than we pay our domestic help for the entire month.

People like us who crib about what an eyesore slums are or how annoying the beggar children at traffic signals are.

People like us who are absolutely helpless without our maids, cooks and drivers, but don't hesitate to treat them like second rate citizens.

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