Monday, May 25, 2009


I have just returned after a three day visit to a small town in UP (name is being withheld).

If one wants to see the changing and determined India, one needs to go to some of these small and developing towns. This is where one will see the real focus and the ongoing progress being made by the aam aadmi in spite of complete indifference of the State, almost non-existent infrastructure, bad roads, power cuts, water scarcity etc.

The railway station had a very strong branding of Vodafone. Most of the people in town do own a mobile set. In the market place, in a corner, the various mobile cos have installed their Charging stations with their respective logos. There was a time when one could see a charging station at the Airports only.Demand has been created. When I think of mobiles....I think of only two names...Rajeev Gandhi and Sam Pitroda.
This town does not have power for about 8-10 a day (any surprise).I visited a self-employed person who did make a passing reference to the power shortage but goes about his work and has ten computers/laptops in use running on inverters. He was clear, if one wants to succeed in the present form of (non) governance, the only way out is to stop complaining and get on with the job.He says there is no point showing a mirror to the blind.

Computers again reminded me of.... Rajeev Gandhi.

A car cannot enter the little congested by-lanes, but in those insignificant small shops in the by-lanes one can get Coke, Pepsi, Kurkure.Demand has been created.
Most of what has been said above has one common factor...all the products/services are those of private sector.
Now, for some anti-climax. I have been prescribed two very common medicines (1) vitamin C and (2 )Pentacid.Both these medicines were not available in the store I visited.
There hardly is any health care facility available in the town. Since we know the condition of the health care in the country, it is not surprising that smaller towns are worse off.

Ministry of health at the centre is expected to ensure availability of basic facility in the country. Instead what do we have,the health minister playing politics with the appointments in the hospitals, worrying about SRK smoking in public, worrying about Bachchan’s poster with a cigar. Instead, he should have ensured that medicine cos make available the essential medicines all over and arrange basic health care facilities so that the medicines get prescribed and consumed, that being the basic rule of business.
This also proves a point that the private sector is very aggressive,efficient,accountable and,responsible.May be, public sector should outsource some of their jobs to pvt cos so that country need not carry the burden of inefficient and non-performing babus.

Prof.R.K .Mishra,Dir of Inst of Public Enterprises once said “IAS officers project themselves expert in everything, their concern and focus on their own career is very high, are self opinionated, power hungry, shrewd and manipulative, procedure and rule focused,arrogant,inaccessible,judgemental,critical of others by concentrating minor details of others. They are very low on positive traits such as commitment to organization, trustworthy, risk taking, contentiousness, informativeness and creativity. They are the lowest visionaries and considered to be no change agents and very poor at public policy, analysis and design.”

Someone somewhere has to explain the reasons as to why is the infrastructure in such bad shape that women have to stand in Q to collect water, children have to sacrifice their studies due to power cuts for hours together. What moral authority a State Govt has to be in power if it cannot provide the minimum basic needs? How can the CM even think of living in centrally air-conditioning and water his/her bungalows while children are dying of heat at 43 c and with non availability of potable water supply. Instead of sacking Babus from the areas where Ms Mayawati has lost elections, she should be sacking the babus who have failed in doing their job.
Now, the time has come when all the ministers and babus have to be made accountable, else they should be sacked or voted out.

Surprisingly, NGOs make so much of noise when it comes to taking on a cause which takes them to the TV studios,but would look the other way when it comes to the just cause of the poor and needy.

We... You...Me...Us... them...All of us will bring about a change.


author.....B K Chowla

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