Every coin has two faces – heads and tails. Every coin earned therefore has two faces. Every foreign coin earned in return translates into economic growth. Therefore, ergo, the economy has two faces – the heads and tails. Let’s suppose heads here refers to the economic prosperity that the so called ‘trickle-down effect’ begets due to high economic growth rate; then the question arise: what do the tails represent? The muck and dark side of the economic growth.
It’s long been known that industrialization without planning is chaos in making. It’s but a delusion sought after by selfish capitalist to satisfy the vision of a myopic prosperity. A dream sold by the politicians to the illiterate and naïve for power. A mirage bought by the latter in desperation to suppress reality, and keep hope burning.
The India of 21st century is no different. It’s but a maddening adventurist fanaticism for prosperity – with higher dividends and luxury than before. A haven for the more foreign corporations and the industrial rejects of the first world – ship salvaging to name one. In the process of establishing these industries, sell the country for an imaginary and unreal economic prosperity that borders on self-destruction of nature and India at large, those occupying seats in the corridors of power scream “employment!,” “growth!” and other big words that honestly doesn’t make sense to anyone but nevertheless is, again, bought in my the gullible masses of India – only to realize later on that they are the victims of their own conceit.
For any industry to establish an outpost in India, land is necessary. It’s well known that this land is not acquired in Lutyen’s Delhi or posh areas of Mumbai; but, usurped from the poor and impoverished – people who cannot fight the powerful and despotic corporations. This land, however, is acquired with a false chimera of rehabilitation and national interests – whose national interest is served when capitalist industry that cannot meet standards start mining? Not certainly mine.
A couple of years fast forward, and the problems start to appear. By this time, the protests being carried out by those who lost land will have lost steam. A new generation of protestors will have come into the scene by this moment—those residing in the vicinity of these industries. And it’s when they start protesting that the media and people suddenly wake up to the fact that industries don’t just come with jobs and economic prosperity; but also pollution and wastes.
The problem of industrial pollutions is but our conception. These wastes were, for all I know, not deposited by aliens from other planets. They’re our own refuse; our own pride bundled in plastic bags. In many ways it exposes our intrinsic hypocrisy as well. The education we all claim to have appears to be at best farcical and redundant because it’s statistically well established that those in the upper strata of the society generate more wastes than those in the lower division does. And many of them haven’t even heard of the word ‘land fill’ or do not have even the smallest idea as to where these refuses go. So long as this is the state with the elitist masses, hope for change is but a statement that we all chatter for the sake of it.
It’s in this India that a Prime Minister from a modest background took broom to sweep the conscience of India – to remind this country that it is yet to fulfill the visions and dreams of Mahatma Gandhi. Notwithstanding the political theatrics of the move, it’s surely a small step towards some change. At least one person will have changed by this move; and such is the beginning of all big changes. Every great revolution had someone small actually changing their ways of life.
We may not see the streets of India all shiny and dirt free tomorrow morning; may be, not even in a month or year. But, with concerted effort by the Government and a politically active youth, anything is possible.
For real far reaching change to appear, politics is inevitable. So long our youth remains abhorrent by its very mention; no real changes would take place. We will have industries come and slaughter the mother earth and rip us off. We will be hoodwinked by the false promises of economic prosperity that borders of self destruction; and when we realize these, we will be too old to do anything. So old that we may try to inoculate politics in the young blood only to be turned down decisively – again, the victims of our own conceit.
Prosperity is not concrete buildings or smoking fuming factories or industrial effluents. It’s ensuring that we’re happy; that we’ve enough food and a safe future. With nature in eternal peril, even neo-prosperity seems like outright hypocrisy. Until and unless we learn this, we will continue with our ways. And for our ways to change, we have to undertake conscience efforts.
Surely, bringing stringent laws is a way. But, such laws are meaningless without the active participation of citizens – motor rules for examples are hardly observed in India. Such participation can only be created with politics – by taking part in the nation building process. So long as we keep aloof from politics, it may all seem irrelevant. And therefore, we flout them.
About the Author: A 15-year-old average Indian with too many dreams and too less effort. Love reading and writing, but haven’t been able to do neither for a longtime now.