India’s current issues – Aamjunta’s quandary

India’s current issues are so rampant and some so cumbersome that I found it better to pen these crisply for quick attention of my readers… for all that precisely matters to Aamjunta.

1. On grant of Extension for surrender to Sanjay Dutt:

Well, we have to accept the Hon’ble Superme Court’s verdict… but in my opinion, even admission of Dutt’s mercy plea for an extension to surrender should have been rejected at the first instance (having already been acquitted under the stringent TADA charges), or in the ruling that granted him relief, number of days extended should have been appended to his remaining prison term. That way, it still could have acted as a deterrent and also been like an equivalent proposition with regard to initially rejecting the 71-year-old ailing Ms. Zaibunissa Kazi’s plea ! The 1993 Mumbai blasts had caused huge damage to lives, property & many other national interests.

So, how can shooting of seven films worth Rs 278 crore form “humanitarian” grounds to grant this partial relief to Dutt ? I am not inclined to pity the producers or other actors whose fate might otherwise get affected. Weren’t they (including Dutt himself) or their advisors aware of his upcoming case in which his arrest was apparent ? Why were the contracts not signed accordingly ? At least, there should have been a provision to bail out the technicians, spot boys and the remaining crew members who actually face the heat if they suddenly go out-of-work ! Then perhaps, Dutt would not have had the need to apply for such a plea on any “humanitarian” grounds for extension to complete his shootings. With this ruling, there ensues a high probability of tough decision-making on part of the Courts in similar cases ! As we all know, in order to maintain the balance of justice, the apex Court has subsequently granted an equal 4-week relief to the seven other citizens who were convicted on similar charges.

2. On Regulation of Industrialization in certain States /Regions:

Considering industrialization being regulated by Policies… the emphasis should be on clarity, uniformity, neat documentation, co-ordination among its various departments and stakeholders (including the local people), time-bound completion of tasks, legal monitoring, timely action against breach of contracts, etc. Needless to mention that it should also take into account environment-safety, cleanliness, providing compensatory alternative land and rehabilitation programmes, protection of religious & cultural rights of local people (especially of Tribals) as per Constitutional principles and National “green” agencies. However, this should not mean that all industrial proposals get stalled due to “green” grounds !! For a developing state to progress on modernization scales and the country to emerge as an economic power as a whole, it is necessary that such a State should have “at least” a certain number of industries.

Let us take the case of Odisha. Most of the natural mineral resources are located along or in the forest areas where Tribals dwell. The catch is not to overlook their rights and at the same time, to look into the progress of the state whose vast mineral riches lie underutilized. Perhaps, the best option would be to let go the critical ones or explore only to a limited extent those regions amply pertaining to Tribal rights but seal clearance on the less disapproving ones. Further, intelligent usage of the latest clean technologies would alleviate harm to the environment & local people, and also will generate the much wanted jobs. Otherwise, due to insufficient industrialization, a serious fallout in the near future would be rapid migration when many people of such a State would need to relocate in search of employment. That will create a situation of extreme urbanization as is already happening in many cities ! So, it lies in the best interest of the stakeholders, policy-makers and industrialists to envisage a “balanced” approach while taking decisions in this regard. And there should not be any vote-bank politics on this !

3. On having educated Electorate & good number of intelligent Parliamentarians:

Next year (may be this year itself !!), there would be the much awaited general elections in India and so time again to decide our fate for the next 5 years ! Though, we are the largest democracy & the largest electorate in the world, two basic and very important facts need to be pondered. First, how many of the white-collared professionals among us actually go to cast our vote ?… Second, with rapidly changing times, how significant has it become for us to have good number of intelligent (not necessarily formally educated) Parliamentarians who can not only feel the pulse of the nation but act effectively & efficiently in that direction ?

Keeping these two facts in mind, henceforth, let each one of us take time out to wisely cast our votes and elect our Leaders. It is also our duty towards the Nation. Let’s not leave the ball in the hands of the poor & uneducated electorate who does it according to the freebies or favors it receives from corrupt political parties !!! We hardly have any time left in this term to educate such illiterate masses or generate that huge amount of awareness (though people like Anna-ji, Mr. Kejriwal and others are trying their best to do it). The least we can do is to elect good Leaders by casting our vote. Let us ALL make our destiny better…stronger.

4. On Education & Health-care:

Recently, I came across an interesting article in a leading newspaper of India… Analysts had mentioned therein that as the Indian society in general, continues to inch up well on the overall economy-ladder, surprisingly its Education & Health sectors (rungs?) would decline !! Initially, I was confused but with only a few observations, I could soon see enough reasons for that, at least for urban-based families…

With growth of IT, most of the white-collared jobs are in this sector which also churns huge profits, high salaries, perks & incentives. In some instances, we get these even as simple graduates. But the minus points that also come packaged with it are long, stressful hours at work ; it doesn’t matter whether one works at office or works-from-home… For most of the time, we are glued to our systems. The remaining hours are spent in getting some last-minute sleep, in the traffic, in the malls, partying with friends, racing-to-finish household chores or on the social-networking sites. On Facebook, I have posted several significant articles in different months for almost a year. In my observation, except one or two folks, the e-socialites who are generally prompt in liking their friends’ personal albums or shared links on jokes or pictures of film-stars /sports-stars, do not seem to even open the “awareness generation” links or write-ups ! In the society, nowadays you would see only a few Moms sit with their children at home-work or go the extra-mile in inculcating academic habits in them. Let alone books, many do not even think it necessary to check news (on-line or newspapers) !

On the health-front, how many of us even in the educated society make it a definite point to wash our hands after coming from outside or before going to the kitchen or handling cutlery ? How many of us exercise regularly ? How many of us visit the Doctor in time- for mired in apprehensions, we wouldn’t post-pone deliverables in office ? When I try to hint at things as these, most people rather remark “kyaaa itna sochte ho, choddo na…chalta hai” (why do you think so much, forget it…its okay)…… Its so essential first, to develop at an individual level. Community service or CSR activities need a greater drive, a greater passion- it cannot be 100% instructed.

So, is it lack of time or energy or indifference to matters related to education and health ?

Aamjunta… it is time to think judiciously and act intelligently.

More to follow soon…..

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