Reading the papers this morning I couldn’t help but think “haven’t I read this before”. I got a flashback, which took me back 365 days to the breakfast table in my previous flat in Mumbai. If I am not mistaken I was having the same coffee even that day. 15th of August has the last 64 years been celebrated as the Independence day in India. I will not get into details here and repeat the history of India, but go straight to the point.
One of my favourite papers (without mentioning any names) had a huge Independence day coverage with a bunch of stories from all over the country. Most of us know about the never-ending fights in Jammu & Kashmir, we are aware about the day-by-day increasing Naxal movements. I also assume that most of us are aware of the problems in Assam and their demands for a separate state. We read about corruption everyday, we know that Mumbai roads suck big time and that government frankly speaking are earning money on bad construction. My point is here that why do we have to repeat ourselves.
Is the “independence special” meant to be a summery of for the lot who do not read the paper rest of the year? I am sure that nobody would notice if the same articles were copied from year to year.
There are a lot of good things happening in India. There are a lot of things we should be proud of. Why not emphasise on that on this very special day and celebrate together instead of grumbling of what could have been done better. That is something we read about everyday anyhow.
It is so easy to blame the government for everything, but we should not forget that things will only happen and change the moment we start to think and to handle things on an individual level. Good teamwork means thoughts and intentions of various individuals towards a common goal.
I was sitting down in the morning trying to remember people who have made an effort in 2009/2010 and who in different ways have given India something to be proud of. I would like to share a few examples and would love it if you could mention who you think deserves special attention today. This could be either from an individual perspective or as part of a team. Here is my contribution:
Increase in green behaviour seen, as Indians rank most sustainable in 2010 greendex survey of 17 countries.
The Taj Mahal Palace is back in full glory
One of India’s most loved landmarks, The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai is restored and joyfully reopened again. Chairman of TATA sons, Ratan Tata together with his staff has done a remarkable job since the 2008 attack and today we can see the grand hotel back in its glory.
Saina Nehwal for taking Indian badminton to unprecedented heights by becoming the first Indian woman to win a Super Series title. Saina has been ranked the second best badminton player in the world.
Affordable medical help
Ashish Kothari, an orthopedic surgeon, left his practice to study at MIT. Not because he was tired of helping people, but because Kothari believed he could help more people as a medical entrepreneur working to lower the cost of care in India. Kothari is formulating a two-part plan for making inexpensive medical tools and building low-cost clinics. In 2009-2010, Kothari is one of 16 fellows at MIT’s Legatum Center for Development & Entrepreneurship, which promotes “bottom-up” global development through technology.
To the moon and back
G. Madhavan Nair, former ISRO Chief, Dr.G. was elected President of the International Academy of Astronautics on August 31, 2009.
He was instrumental in the success of Chandrayaan – 1, which had found traces of water on the Moon.