Posted by: John Elliott | August 14, 2007

India at 60: A Nehru dream comes true

India knows it has something to celebrate Wednesday, the 60th anniversary of its independence from Britain.  That may sound obvious, but it isn’t, because 10 years ago many people said they were not sure what there was to be proud of on the 50th anniversary.

People bemoaned the country’s failure to get to grips with endemic social and infrastructure problems, especially poverty, education, health, roads, and power. There had been a spate of economic reforms after a humiliating international financial crisis in 1991, but they had sputtered to a virtual halt. Business was not doing anything very dramatic, and there were only glimmerings of the information technology-led boom and more recent manufacturing renaissance.

Today, many of the problems — especially social — are little improved. Vast proportions of the country’s 1.1 billion people are undernourished and hungry, as well as poorly educated and illiterate. Blighted by a lack of drinking water and proper sanitation, many are plagued with poorly-treated ill health.

But the country’s overall self-confidence, and its economic performance, is being transformed. In the past four or five years, a spirit of “can-do” has inspired businesspeople — big and small, ranging from names like Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani, Azim Premji and the Infosys founders to small niche players — who invest, manage, deliver, and grow both at home and abroad. Funds are more often than not raised legitimately, rather than via a friendly politician’s influence on a pliant public sector bank.

Companies operate in a mostly open market, knowing that they must manage efficiently and deliver quality or fail. Many of the names at the top of the business league tables have changed in the 10 years from old Marwari trading caste families, which thrived in a controlled economy, to new entrepreneurs. Family control of companies is still widespread, but the newcomers have an ambition to succeed in India and abroad that was previously often lacking.

That has been shown most dramatically by the recent surge of takeovers overseas, spearheaded by the Tata group and by IT and pharmaceutical companies. Similarly, the growth in the number of executives from abroad who are prepared to work in India — foreign as well as of Indian origin and not just on lucrative postings — reflects both the availability of internationally competitive salaries and a more conducive working environment.

Consequently, economic growth has risen in the 10 years from around 6% to almost 10%. The Mumbai stock market’s Sensex index has gone from under 3,500 to a peak last month of over 15,800. The rupee has recovered a decades-long slide and is now strengthening against world currencies (not just because of the declining dollar), and foreign exchange reserves have rocketed from $26 billion to around $230 billion.

India is also earning new respect as an international player, not least with the United States, which is on the brink of signing a nuclear deal that will transform the two countries’ diplomatic and business relationship

One the flip side, some things are getting worse. The quality of governance is declining, especially in the states, because many politicians and bureaucrats are becoming more corrupt and self-serving. Parts of the country are appallingly run, especially Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, which for years have been almost as bad as Pakistan in terms of political failure — and their economies are worse. Maoist Naxalite rebels control vast areas of other states.

There is little urban planning or respect for regulations: construction of new buildings takes little account of environmental standards or the need, for example, for adequate drainage and other services.

Even more seriously, the economic boom is leading to intense pressure on land in a country where 70% of the population relies on it for its living. In the next ten years, it is quite possible that social unrest will be caused more frequently by land disputes than by traditional religious and ethnic differences.

Despite these problems, India is on the move. When Jawaharlal Nehru, the first prime minister, made his famous “midnight hour” independence speech on August 15, 1947, he referred to India’s “tryst with destiny,” and called on people “to work and work hard, to give reality to our dreams.”

Ten years ago that work ethic had not materialized. Today it is operating in the private sector, generating most of the successes.

Think what could be achieved if the politicians, bureaucrats and public sector did the same.


Responses

  1. great article. The flip side you speak about is something that India really has to worry about. We joke that India develops when its government is sleeping, but the state of governance in the country is really the pits’ especially some state governments. where soemtimes coalitions are so complicated that its all the government focueses on.
    but not to seem entirely pessimistic, India has potential like no other country and hopefully we will leverage it to our advantage

  2. I agree. India is doing very well.

  3. India has a long way to go to have sustainable development as this is now driven by traditional moneyed classes and the educated elite from Ivy league equivalent universities. This group is indeed very , very small and is in some ways \’everyone knows everone else” kind of a village. The breakdown in infrastructure , poor quality of human development and social backwardness in most parts of the country is just unbelieveable. I would believe that China can be a developed nation in one more generation. India will take a 1000 years if there is no change in the way it is governed and steps to improve quality of human resources in a broadbased manner.

  4. India has a long way to go. Yes, it is a force to be considered but nothing ever materializes. Everybody is talking about the great things India has to offer and all that it has accomplished but look into the future. We do not have anything [strong research centers, military power, natural resources etc] to help us sustain. Just because the IT Industry is doing well does not mean it would provide all of us food on our table. We need to educate people, stop pollution, learn to listen and co-operate with people. Our politicians are all rogues, if we can get them replaced by decent educated people, India will be the best place to live. But then again that is just a dream….

  5. It takes time for an elephant(India) to wake up, stand up, walk, jog and finally run. We should stop comparing India with small developed countries like Singapore (rats) and even Germany, France etc (US can be exception here because of it’s size). They are just too small to compare. Just think of the day (do not know when it will come 20 years,30 or 50 years from now) when this elephant will start running. It will definitely a treat to watch along with another elephant called CHINA..:)

  6. John, your perspective is absolutely perfect on what you had told about indian politicians, but i fear you went some what wrong when you compared UP and Bihar with Pakistan.

    You again spottend the right candidate when you mentioned about the pressure on land. And the disparity and unrest it will bring.

    But when you tell about all these things you have to just think one more thing that this country is very young and still lots of hard work and toil remains and its now only that the India have awaken and started moving. Give it some more time.

    We have a lot more to do, lots of hard work still pending. But the essense of being an Indian is totally different and breathtaking.

    But i surely feel you would have made a constructive criticism and i envy you for that.

  7. Indians have the largest collective inferiority complex in history. India is great in some ways and beyond horrible in others. It’s cultural bias against all things non-desi is shocking in a country that claims to be in the vanguard of globalization.

    I really could care less what anyone has to say here. Where the bloggers are from says it all. People vote with their feet, and I defy anyone to tell me that almost all Indians would not do anything to get out of India. That really says it all about the current state of India . . . doesnt it?

  8. The important thing is we are on the right track. We are growing, growing and growing. The indian growth story continuous irrespective of the party, person who is ruling. Politics are no more important for the young india.
    Thank you.

  9. You are right about the politicians. The social unrest in the future can happen due to the economic devide unless the govt act on it soon.

    I guess our PM is already working on it.

  10. I totally agree to JE views. The biggest problem that faces the country now is corrupt politician. Almost all the time, we the great Indians just blame the politician for all the issues and just move on with our selfish life. If we really care for India and the poor Indian people, we should come out of our selfish life and try to enter into politics and do something good for the country. I know its not easy, in that case instead of blaming the politician try to think what good you can do to change the politician and the political system.

  11. India will become a global power by 2011. This was told by Swami Vivekananda and Swami Aurobindo and USA is heavily dependent on Indian talent. For that matter entire world is dependent upon Indian talent. We already proved our capabilities in IT/Software.

  12. india is india’….nobody can compare to india……

  13. Despite all the challenges in India the people there have never been as confident and optimistic about its future as they are now. It is a stable and enduring Democracy despite its sheer diversity. India, despite being one of the oldest civilisations in the world, is after all only 60 years old since Independence. Compare this to the U.S. which has 231 years of Independence. So much yet needs to be done, especially to narrow social inequality. Loking at the big picture India’s journey has only just started; and like all journeys this one will surely have its ups and downs. But, India is a juggernaut on the move!

  14. Wake up and smell the coffee. India is a sty. The overcrowding, filth and poverty is beyond belief.
    Walk down the street and 90% of people you see are men – how can this be right? Its one of the most backward places on Earth.

  15. The only point that you have to remember Mr. JE, is that India is the only “real” democracy. Every other democracy in the world has been made up of only one culture and one predominant language and atmost 2 political parties. India’s democratic foundation is based on the fact that there should be multiple cultures, languages and political parties to help define the country. There are “minority” segments in every country; India is the only country which has had a Woman PrimeMinsiter and President; a Sikh prime minister; a muslim ex-president… and so on and on… Even the fact that jews in India are happy (article in your cnn.com) than being in Israel points to the fact that people (who are the foundation of any nation) have the biggest heart in India.
    Yes, like any country (or start-up for that matter), there are growing pains but nothing that cannot be overcome. Take a look at what US (which is for some weird reason considered as the benchmark of democracy and development) used to be and still is from a human right and democracy perspective. And the US has been independent since 1776 (around 231 years and India has been independent for ~60 years)
    I would suggest to JE to get the facts correct from core indian citizens as opposed to magazines and heresay.
    Warm Regards,
    Mike Dennis.
    (And Yes, I am an american)

  16. @India never compete with america,
    I think you have your facts wrong here. You are telling me that india is a country which gives oppurturnities to only particular caste or religion then you are totally WRONG.You have no knowledge or very little knowledge about india.
    Minorities in india
    1)Abdul kalam azad(president of india)
    2)Manmohan singh(primeminister of india)
    3)Md azaruddin, Irfan pathan, Md kaif just to name a few in indian cricketers who play for india
    4)Sania mirza(tennis sensation from india)
    5)shahrukh khan, salman khan, aamir khan (leading bollywood actors)
    India has given chance to all. We also had a women prime minister in a so called developing poor country.
    Look at america, never had a women president nor a minority president.
    This shows what America is all made up of. Nothing but showoff. So, before you talk about some other country plz know your facts.

  17. The story of Post Independence India is really interesting. Afterall like any other country, India means the native people whose efforts will only foster to its growth. Politicians should not distinguish themselves from the common people. They should not use the government to pressurise the society to fulfil their ambitions. Last but not the least, merit alone should be the last word to become prosperous and not other criteria such as gender, caste and religion. Also there should be one common law for everyone. Then only India will really emerge as a developed country.

  18. Message to all indians around the globe – If u want to see india really growing faster, please do invest in india. It can be mutual funds, directly on stocks or real estate. This will be a great indirect contribution to the growth of the country.

  19. Some of the comments touched the nerve of the readers and they are mad about LE`s article .
    JE made one mistake comparing UP and Bihar with Pakistan, probably he meant the backwardness situation of these States! However,rest of the description of India and points made for and againts the progress of India are quite good and realistic.

  20. Mr. John Elliot gave a brief but succinent picture of India today. I totally agree with his last sentence and I myself always wondered, ‘think what could be achieved if politicians,bureacrats and public sector did the same.”

  21. I truly believe that,India’s GOLDEN YEARS are yet to come.
    India’s is having world’s 25% youth,
    This is the biggest plus point in INDIA’s favour, although Indians have to manage there population growth in next 8-10 year, otherwise situation may get worse after 10 years, But if we hope that they can manage to do so, then there is enoromous oppurtunities for this world’s largest democracy to show the world what they are.
    9% growth is really dream for a DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY, or may be even america cant dream that for themselves ever.
    And India can manage 8% growth up to 2020 then IT WILL BE WORLD”S THIRD LARGEST ECONOMY AFTER AMERICA & CHINA.
    Although, Its not all good-good picture, There are some serious challenges for INDIANS like INFRASTRUCTURE, POLITICAL PROBLEMS, Corruption, Not enough Health facility for poor ones.
    But still I believe that a Country have to make his path own. Let the people of Democratic country decide their own future.

  22. Gr8 comments from ‘India never comp…w/ America’, TS & Mahdevan. We have many problems that hinder our development as a nation; Population, Reservation, lack of facilities……..etc. I am proud of our acheivements, but we can definitely do more. What needs to happen is change in the midnsets of people? We always can learn good things from America and there is no reason to be ashamed of that. We boast of the modern IT growth & fancy lifestyle in Indian Cities but if we step out of the Cities, we will be schocked to see people who cannot even afford one meal per day………look at this video(Other side of Outscourcing)……

    Jai Hind!!!

  23. First of all i feel angry on comparing pakisthan with bihar,,,,We have democracy in Bihar or Up…Where is democracy in Pak..
    Moreover Bihar is progressing in the past 3 years except that the speed is slow…i agree there is naxalite problems , but its found in almost every place…
    Not to forget , India is a country with 30 different major states with differnet languages ..Infact its a cobine of 30 differnet countries…
    UNITY IN DIVERSITY…
    And do not forget the progress in IT and ITES…
    See this link , most of the companies are from IT and ITES sector and few from BPO…
    http://stocktips.in/?p=8483

  24. There seems an inordinate amount of comments on John Elliot’s article, mostly how poor his research is. This is classic ‘desi’ mentality that has time and again kept India from realizing her true potential. India is a country, that obviously has several smart people – their successes overseas is testimony to that. So why do we spend an inordinate amount of effort dissecting what someone else says about us? If you look at historical data, you will see that starting with Nehru and then the Gandhi clan, India has always spent more time in PR than in actual development. Witness the failed ‘NAM’ and ‘SAARC’ movements, both self-serving ego boosters by Indira Gandhi. There is truth to the saying ‘Success breeds Success’. At the risk of being un-PC, I suggest we stop hanging out with ‘loser’ nations and start trading with true up and coming powerhouses in East Asia and Latin America.

  25. If it tool 60 years to materialize, especially last 10 I would hardly call it A Nehru Dream Come True.
    Needless to say the article is only skimming on the surface about current state of affairs of country called India.

  26. I think only Gandhiji, if alive today, can give the best answer of the growth of India after 60 years of independence.

  27. India needs 10 years of autocracy like China and then should switch back to democracy. States like UP and Bihar will never get transformed in a democracy.

  28. No Matter How many YEARS Of Independence you celeberate INDIA Never Becomes LIKE AMERICA
    FREEDOM
    Freedom of RELIGION
    IN America when Companies Hire Manpower they are not checking your certificates , Your Religion , Your CASTE

    BUT
    In India –> People will see What RELIGION and CASTE You are FROM

  29. What is the parameter to measure the growth of the country? Is it economy? Is it facility to the people? Is it education to each and every children of the country? or The moral upliftment of the people of independent India? after 60 years of Independence.

  30. I think, JE has explained precisly what is happenning in India…India can do much better than what it is now…as the PM said, the best is yet to come..if basic sanitation, safewater supply, good health and planned developement of the infrastructur of the nation are given importance by the politicians.

  31. John you state how still India still has its poor and lack food areas. But why dont you look around your own country (America)I am a natural born American citizen who has both values of American and Indian culture but you need to open your eyes and see that there are still poor areas in the USA. Please before you say false things about India or other countried please look at the country you live in first. Happy Bday India

  32. John Elloitt obviously does not have the required breadth and depth of everything going on in India to author a good article, which could result in the perception of quality for a publication like Fortune.

    Fortune needs to replace him with someone more quantitative, analytical and has a 2007 sense of reality.

  33. India is for sure rising but the article has some basic flaws. It says Indian businesses want to succeed abroad now and it was lacking before. Indian enterpreneurs were every as aggressive, policies have changed not the way Indian business man thought. Vision and will was always there, now the oppurtunity is available because of policies which is what was missing 10 years ago. Go India!!!!

  34. One thing that I noticed from all the comments is most of them are posted by NRIs, including me. We really have to do something to our country rather commenting our country’s growth and talking about the past. Jai Hind!!!

  35. john Elliott needs to stop writing negative things about India. He seems to be jealous about growing India.
    Please get a better reporter.

  36. If we look at the bright side, there are incredible opportunities for India and the US to partner. Of course, the whole outsourcing wave has linked our economies like never before….companies like IBM and Accenture will soon have their largest organizations in India…..but serving the US consumer. More opportunities in areas of Nuclear Cooperation, Financial Services and even Healthcare…..of the 45 million or so Americans without Insurance, more and more are looking to “Outsource” to India. Look up http://www.medical-treatment-in-India.com for a good discussion of the issues in healthcare.

  37. It would be good to mention number of cities visited and When was last time you’ve visited India and How many Cities you’ve visited?

  38. Mr, Ramesh Chheda, Chicgo, IL
    INDIA not waging many war’s must have to do with capabilities as much as intentions..bulling SARC nations is one thing, mobilizing , deploying and completing a mission 1000’s of miles away in a foreign terrain is another…did INDIA not lose to china 40 years back?
    Anyway’s no person in his rite mind would support or initiate a war, but difficult decisions must have to be taken in this not so perfect world.
    Isn’t democracy and freedom not worth fighting and dying for?
    As INDIA grows, India can not hide under non-aligned cover and avoid taking painful decisions…india when it grows, we hope would be responsible and pick up its share of difficult tasks.

  39. Congratulations to all Indian in the universe.As in India belive when you reach the age of SIXTY you are are fully matured. So India is fully matured now that is why we do not have the title of developing nation we are a developed(transforming Nation).

  40. ok Gatham Gathaaha!! Means past is past we cant change it , It think it make sense to talk what the vision for indians 100 years independence would be and we can re discuss this point assuming most of us live upto that (hope fully our morality rate increase oh there u go 1 target to the list)

  41. Congratulation to all Indian ,Indian American & all indian people around the world on 60th Independence Day. we
    all shoud be proud from our heart,what we are for last 7000 years !and what we gave world,without any expectation.

  42. India suffers the same plague that the US suffers from. “Democracy” that has been artfully usurped by lobbies and business interests that really dont care about the common man. They care purely about the transfer of wealth through mechanisms such as markets and tools such as the WTO. How else can you shamefully explain the fact that India, with a Trillion dollar GDP, still has so many languishing poor? How else can you explain that in a world of 500+ billionaires and 15000+ millionaires we talk about this fictitious thing called “poverty”? Wake up, take pause, and join together for re-shaping democracies through activist voting. Dont vote for the large establishment parties, challenge your leaders and convict those having committed even small crimes, rise up against legislatation that was enacted without direct vote based participation, and do not work for businesses with a amoral history of anti-societal political influence. I pray for a day when, either through tumultous revolution or gradual transformation, governance and policy truly become democratic. Imagine how global wealth and output will soar in such a world! And guess what, with your vote in India or the US, you can help make this change, bit by bit.

  43. When Mahatama Gandhi came back to India from South Africa, his political guru Mr Gokhale adviced him to devote a complete year to learn India before getting engaged in Indian politics.

    A century later, with Indian society now much more complex than it was, one would probably need many fold years to learn India.

    India is so hetrogenous on so many dimensions that I would think it would be difficult for even a seasoned politician to understand it.

    India’s hetrogenous character is its strength and beauty for her friends but her enemies see as a weakness to be exploited.

    Finally, India can not be judged just by the % of economic growth or the growth of share market ot how many televisions are owned by Indians per capita. Economics can not capture the spirit of India though that is a popular yardstick used today.

    John Elliott has taken a fair chance to describe India. But his comparison of UP and Bihar with Pakistan is not correct. Ordinary people of UP and Bihar have not hatred towards anybody inspite of the difficult life they live.

  44. All is well said on this forum. But, what really concerns me is the lack of infrastructure planning in India. They make cars first and then the roads and the highways, which in-fact are still less the acceptable. They give out construction permits for building residential flats and commercial buildings, but, no planning for power and water and roads to serve such newly developed cities. Everything is behind the curve, build first and plan later. There is no foresight amongst the government planners to be able to predict and plan ahead, rather than later. In comparision, China has done a tremondous job, they prepare the infrastructure first to last for 25 years before they even emabark developing new townships.

  45. Mr Elliott,

    You have noted the changes in private sector but there are lot of good people in the government and public sector who have worked hard side by side to enable all the positive changes. Yes, the percentage of good and hard working people in gov/public sector is relatively small but its growing.

  46. Ms. Nirupama Sharma’s comments about having Ivy league educated leaders are characteristically Indian in their naivete. We’ve always had leaders who were educated in world famous institutions. Starting with Nehru and the entire Gandhi clan, we have not had any shortage of leaders who came from privileged families and hence ended up with Ivy league educations. What we’ve never had are leaders with any fresh, bold ideas; instead we have had a series of self-serving power mongers too busy saving their seats to really implement any bold policies. As for India’s recent boom in economic growth, what has been conveniently forgotten is that but for the IMF threat to withold development loans in 1991, unless the Rajiv Gandhi Govt implemented economic reforms, we would never have had the explosion of entrepreneurial spirit that is driving India today. So its time to take a break from the usual chest thumping of having a ‘woman or dalit PM or President’ and instead focus on having the ‘best’ person to lead the country. Let’s get past crowing about how progressive and enlightened we are and instead focus on economic prosperity for all!

  47. During 60 years since independence, India has never initiated an unnecessary war like US has done to people of Vietnam and ongoing war that is killing scores of innocent civilians in Iraq. Povery or not I congratulate India on that front alone> What good is US like warmongorness which is so called “Progress”!

  48. India has too many people to ever be more than a society where the rich get richer and the growth rate for the majority poor lags behind by exponential rates. Family planning is a start. Fixing the social system is another. India is more likely to end up with a 30% HIV rate amongst adults or end up losing 30% of it’s population to a conflict with a nuclear neighbor (or intra-India fighting and slicing up of the country) than ever become anything close to a middle-class driven society. Too many people, too poor.

  49. Mr BLN.Murthy – I dont understand what we call by India being Democratic? I guess we are truly missing the meaning of a true “Democratic country”. Where does a common man has the right to speak, not to mention his safety afterwards. We still have to go miles and miles to get where we want to be, and lets not just blame the politicians/administrators being corrupt, how many of us are true citizens and stick to the rules? Starting from following traffic singals to stop-paying-bribe-policy! Its not just the system, its the people who should change.

  50. India’s growth story really didn’t start until major reforms were mad ein 1991. Since then, the economy has grown at an avergae 7% a year. I saw a good video on India’s last 60 years located here: http://one.revver.com/watch/339183

  51. The bigger problem than governace, enforcing law etc is WATER.

    Water scarcity can do what many other fault lines have been unable to do so far.

    Water can divide India.

  52. Why do we keep comparing India with America? Its been just 60 years for India’s independence and more than 200 years for America but India has achieved what America still needs to work on.India has a woman president, had woman prime minister and America still needs to have their first woman president. If we take a look at the top cabinet in India, our prime minister is a london school grad and finance minister harvard alumni, no other counrtry in the world has that combination, not even US. We have one of the best talent pool in the world.
    We have a population of 80% hindus but if you see people who are ruling all over India whether its business, bollywood, sports its people from all religions, caste, culture.For a country with so much diversity but still working together to build a strong, prosperous, democratic and secular India is an achievment in itself.

  53. Does anyone thinks India’s land area has the productivity to sustain 1 billion population?

  54. India or Bharat has been around for some 5000 – 6000 years atleast. The ancient ruins of Mohenjo Daro and Harappa show the level of urban planning not seen even today in India. However the Indus Valley civilization was a Dravidian civilization which was possibly destroyed by the invading Aryans, something which the White supremist may not like know.

    India at 60 is the success of a democracy which has survived inspite of the immense diversity which is India.

    Peace

  55. I believe the most important thing for India is to change the mindset and culture to one of leadership and a bigger sense of community. What’s really holding India back is not population or infrastructure but culture that allows for execuses. Besides viewing issues like a large population or a diverse culture as a negative view it as a positive and figure out ways to capatilize from it!!!

  56. Indeed corruption has failed India on many fronts. It is a shame that despite all the progress most of Indians still live below poverty line. Still given an option I will choose to live in UP or Bihar under the leadership of corrupt politicians rather than being in lawless Pakistan under military dictatorship. By the way, I have no problem with the Pakistani people who actually suffers much more than a typical Bihari. Military rulers exempted.

  57. In my early years I would blame Nehru and the parties that followed for their socialist policies that ran India into the ground. As I have matured and observed the progress (economic) that India has made in the last decade my views have changed. Those socialist policies allowed us time to build a solid foundation. It allowed us to establish a sound educational system and discover technologies (be it 20 years later) on our own.

  58. I agree with aaron Book comment on Nehru. His vision was a socialistic model based on soviet union. We started to lift our middle class in 1990’s. That was possible by the free market principles and moving towards capitalism. India is a country which is slowly reaping the benefits of capitalism. In a capitalistic society, standards have to be followed and that will help in accountability and reduction in corruption.America and India will become more closer and influence the world politics in 21st centruy.

  59. For a country like India , whose diversity of languages , religions, castes and economic disparities , to remain a democratic country itself is a great achievement unmatched by any country in the world. We are talking of 20 % of the world population.The freedom enjoyed by the commonman in making his livelyhood as per his capability is perhaps unmatched by even developed countries , inspite of the so called corrupt politicians and adminstrators. As far as corruption is concerned the so called developed countries are perhaps more developed in their sophisticated corruption,which Indians are yet to master.

  60. India has 20% of world population growth but far less than 20% of economy growth. Is that consider progress or retreat? Even at population 10 years ago, it’s virtually impossible for India’s land area to sustain this population comfortably. Where the extra lands will come from?

  61. Another emerging industry is private healthcare in India. More Americans are travelling overseas to get healthcare that is out of reach in the US. Given that 45 million Americans lack health insurance, Steve Forbes calls “Medical tourism” a way to solve some of our healthcare issues.
    Lots of such issues and ideas over Medical “outsourcing” are discussed at http://www.medical-tourism-in-india.com Again the dual nature of India is at display…millions without healthcare and world class health facilities exist in the same economy.

  62. It’s true that India has issues with poverty, corruption, infrastructure, etc. However, so does China yet the world community (esp.investors) can’t keep away. India will rise up and the economic tide will lift all boats. Concentrated efforts must be made to reduce corruption and strengthen the infrastructure. But it is a cop-out to say no one knows where India is headed. It is up to all Indians, at home and abroad, to help build the Indian dream, and not just for an elite few but for a broad swath of India.

  63. “A Nehru dream comes true” is not an appropriate title. With all due respect, Jawaharlal Nehru was a socialist whose backward economic policies ran his country into the ground. I am very happy that the people are rising out of poverty due to recent free-market capitalist reforms and wish them continued prosperity. America has nothing to lose in India’s rise and I hope we can be a partner for freedom in the world in the years to come.

  64. Hello
    You can’t compare political situation in UP with Pakistan. UP, as rest of India, has always had proper democratically elected govts, whereas Pakistan is yet to figure out how democracy really works. I have no first hand info about Pakistan but being from Lucknow, i know for sure my life is just in UP is just the same as in Delhi.

  65. India at 60 ? Are you kidding? India has been an established fact for 10 times longer than the United States. India or Bherat was essentially formed by the Aryan invasions and the Hindu Brahmans and Bhudist thinkers 2000+ yrs ago. Islamic and Christian emperors were thin over that.

  66. India can not be evaluated on standard terms of comparision. It’s full of extreme contradictions. Where growth rate can be 10% but it still can be home to most number of poor and miserable yet enthusiastic people. On one measure, what has been achieved in the last 20 years is mind boggling on the other hand, what could not be achieved in the same period is equally unbelievable and yet at another level, it’s all explainable. Einstein said of the universe that “it’s most incomprehensible that the universe is actually comprehensible” – that statement can be applied to India as well. Such an enigma deserves an enigmatic prophesy – “Where India is headed is anybody’s guess but a brave person would not place his bet on India”.


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