The social experiment called “India”

In a previous post I made an attempt of defining India. Showing the diversity, the stark differences between every one and every place inside that huge area which for some historical reasons became known as one country… 

So today I was made aware by my dear friend Odzer, that Mumbai has been shaken- well considering the choice of weapon perhaps not shaken, but certainly stirred by alleged terrorist attacks. Apparently now terrorists have picked up automatic weapons and fired randomly at train stations, cinema halls, pubs and five star hotels in South Mumbai. Of course immediately the culprits are labelled terrorists. I’m not sure if anybody has taken responsibility for the attacks yet, but to me it all sounds quite filmy if you know what I mean…

All I can say is, now that the five star hotels; Oberoi and Taj, have gone to shit, I definitely won’t be staying there! To hell with it all.. it’s safer staying at a small dirty cockroach infested guesthouse then isn’t it?!

Either way, if I had any idealism or sense of righteousness left in me, I would feel sad, upset and outraged, over the fact that a country I’m still quite fond of keeps having these issues. Not only is this socalled democracy corrupt to the core, but every Tom, Dick and Harry seem to want to  make a statement by shamelessly wasting human life. Now, knowing that the every day news in India brings with it a fair share of shocking, controversial, sensational or bizarre stories, I will proceed to do what most people I know do. Having lost the last droplet of passion and fire for what is good and just in this world; I will sit down, turn on the TV, munch on some crisps and shrug. Pfff.. So a terrorist shot some people. Did the casualty number rise into three figures? No? Then it’s all just routine isn’t it. 

You see, having come just out of High school, going to this strange land, with such a HUGE amount of wrong being done to everyone all the time, there just is no way to care and remain sane. So I have resorted to being insanely sane about it. Shit happens every day. Us mere mortals cannot understand why or how it was possible. Any person with common sense might have been able to think of some ways to prevent it or at least do some damage control. I’m not going to read indepth about it, instead I will patiently wait until in 10-20 years or so, some Bollywood director will make a movie about it. Then I’ll see it and remember “Yes! This happened, I remember hearing about it at the time…”; But only if it doesn’t have too many dance sequences in it, or I’ll tire of it even before I even watch it!

You see, the world is a dispicable horrid place. People may be good at heart; but only if they are content. If you step on their toes, they grow horns and start spewing fire and brimstone. They pick up their pitchforks and torches, and hunt down whoever steps in their way; fiercely and passionately. Because the EGO rules.

And exactly for this reason, it is best to stay out of it. In my mind, I can only make sense of India as a social experiment. The premise of which is:

 

“What will happen when you put a bunch of fanatic, religious, hysterical, easily wooed people into one place and let a few authority figures rule them who put pressure on everybody at the same time, plus add poverty, oppressive traditions and other social factors.”

 

Now let me ask you this question: What the hell did you think was going to happen???? 

Now, to get back to my TV programme… I leave you, respectfully…

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27 Comments »

  1. odzer Said:

    @ Hedonist : This is indeed one of your best written posts. What indeed can you expect! I think it was Winston Churchill who said it best about India, “India is an abstraction…. India is no more a political personality than Europe. India is a geographical term. It is no more a united nation than the Equator.” In that sense we are just putting up with each other and when indeed someone or the others toes are stepped on all hell breaks loose. I am rapidly losing my last shreds of faith in the Indian scheme/model. In the past it was possible for Indians to blame the British for every riot, for every thing that went wrong in this country and say things like “Oh but the British are set to Divide and Rule India”. However I wonder now if it would have been really that difficult to do that considering we are not united at all and I doubt if we can be.

  2. Quirky Indian Said:

    I think you’ve pretty much nailed it, Hedonist. Best explanation I’ve heard. Would be funny if I didn’t feel like a skewered lab rat!

    @Odzer: welcome to the club!

    Cheers,

    Quirky Indian
    http://quirkyindian.wordpress.om

  3. Vikram Said:

    Hedonist, quite frankly I find this post of yours quite appalling. Based on some cursory observations and notes you have decided that India is some so called democracy, some flawed experiment run by authority figures ?

    India is a democracy, not the best one in the world, but it meets the most basic requirement, people vote (in high percentages) and governments change all the time. And it also has some other good things, a free media and a broad civil society movement. Yes, corruption is widespread in India’s administrative set up, but so is the case in every developing country in the world from Brazil to China.

    Yes, India has inherited an oppressive society, but the nation state of India and its ideals itself are the most important tools used to overturn this social order.

    Your own continent was once ruled by fascist Nazi (elected) dictators who massacred millions and started two world wars wars, if it wasnt for the Americans, war would have wiped you guys off Earth forever. Yes, we are at war right now, but with extremist terrorists who hate the very idea of India. We are more different than Europeans (our languages are all in different scripts and each linguistic group has large religious minorities) were yet we became united under a non-violent movement, it did not take two world wars and a cold war.

    I find your comments in quotes especially appalling. So after years of knowing India, you have concluded that Indians are a bunch of fanatic, religious, hysterical, easily wooed people, wow you must have had such a bad experience over here . Please dont come back and say, I only meant some lunatic fringe, the next few lines in your quote explains everything.

    Next time, have some regard for the brave men and women who protect the worlds largest democracy. I would like to see how well you guys would hold up if bordered by a terror breeding failed state, a ruthless military dictatorship and a hegemonic communist state.

  4. Vikram Said:

    See the thing is Hedonist, when you see wrong you have to fight. Thats what my countrymen do every day, through NGOs, rallies and fights. You said corruptiom, heard of the RTI, heard of Satyendra Dubey, heard of Anna Hazare ?

    Heard of Pratham, heard of Utthan, heard of ESG ?

    Heard of 103 year old voters, heard of people voting in -20 deg C weather ?

    That’s called democracy, not a so called democracy. We fought for it, VERY HARD for a VERY LONG TIME. It wasnt bequeathed to us like it was to you by the Americans, and neither you nor the terrorists are going to take it away from us.

  5. hedonist666 Said:

    Yes yes so people vote. Big deal. That doesn’t make India a democracy. Large numbers vote? Why? Because some politician starts a religious debate, or literally comes to the voters in a rally and BRIBES them. A large percentage of the voting population is illiterate. They are poor and may not have the best avenues of gaining information about who exactly they are voting for. They have to take what the politicians say at face value, they cannot research and find out through TV or the internet if all they get to hear are lies.
    And it doesn’t matter if the government changes frequently, because other than that things don’t change.
    If you have THAT much corruption in a political system; from top til bottom. And you know the politicians who promise you the world, are taking their own cut first to buy a new Merc, then it’s not a democracy. It’s no different than a communist regime with “the party members” getting all the privileges. The only difference is that in India, it’s proudly called a democracy because farce elections are held.
    And my experiences in India were not terrible, but they made me into a cynic. Feed me enough shit news and I will say that the system is shit. And don’t get me started on the so called western democracies either. The US definitely is just a farce as well. A bigger one than India; because when in India something goes wrong, the media will make a big fuss about it and everyone watching Sky News and whatnot will know about it. In the US any bad news regarding their wars etc. is simply filtered out and doesn’t even make it to the media. The masses are blissfully unknown.

    Oh and if you think that I literally meant India was an experiment, you got the whole post wrong. It was simply an outrageous hypothesis, a figure of speech, in order to put things right in my mind.

    Oh and a technicality here: the Nazis only started one world war. They were elected in 1933, and the first world war was already over in 1918. But what I will give you is that both wars were started in part due to the unification of Germany; another country that wasn’t really united. However their differences in culture, language and geography are so minor compared to India, indeed you are doing quite well. Perhaps we’ll have world war III on our hands soon when India starts to fight with China and Pakistan at the same time… That should be interesting.

  6. hedonist666 Said:

    @Odzer & Quirky Indian, thanks for the comments. They are appreciated. I quite expected being crucified for this post 😉

    getting back to Vikram: Yes the majority of Indians are hysterical fanatics who are easily wooed by politicians. Do you really need me to point at various riots that happened lately in order to prove my point? “The muslims killed someone of ours, let’s take revenge” and the masses go “YEEHHHH” and pick up their swords immediately. That should tell you something.

  7. odzer Said:

    @ Vikram : I guess she has got it right. That is all I can say for now. Indian democracy is indeed a farce. Voting in India is hardly based on the merits of voting. Indians are indeed hysterical and may or may not be fanatical. Everything here is larger than life. In some ways hedonist is a better observer of India than even I am because she has spent enough years looking at the country from the point of view of an outsider. I am not sure how you concluded that her time here was so terrible. I am surprised that you are outraged at such a well written and accurate description and not to mention a humorous description of this country. Calm down dude.

    Elections in India can only be describe as ‘partially free’ and the voter turn out is on an average almost around 50%. You can find the data regarding that here.The data is from Institute for democracy and electoral assistance. In any case India has difficult conditions not only DUE to its neighbours but also due to the state of the nation itself. Something for which you and me are squarely responsible. If someone calls a spade a spade I do not mind it. Personally I do not have any illusions about the conditions here.

    Europe did hold pretty well with a whole Eastern Soviet Bloc and a poverty stricken africa sticking to its bottom. Even you would agree that basically things in India are just broken. The whole country just appears to have nothing that works with precision , finesse or smoothly. I am never sure when the power will disappear, do not know if the water will flow out of the taps, can not trust the cops etc etc. Has it not always been like this? I think its best we wake up from our slumber and start fixing things.

  8. odzer Said:

    @ hedonist : I often think back at the first thing you saw when you landed in India and have a laugh about it, a Dog eating a dead cow and a crow eating a dead dog on the street. The circle of life completed in one go can only be seen in India though.

  9. hedonist666 Said:

    @Odzer; hehehe yes indeed that was one of the first things I saw. Another being kids shitting next to the road 😉 And everybody wearing blindingly colourful clothes, making Europe look like a drab grey prison of conformity…

  10. Vikram Said:

    Hedonist, people voting may not be a big deal, but governments changing peacefully is. And this has happened both at the union and state level all the time. You mentioned that Indians are fanatics etc., do you remember the response after the Gujarat riots ? Himachal Pradesh (95 % Hindu) voted out the BJP government, and 2 years later the BJP government was kicked out at the centre. That showed some nice fanaticism, didnt it ?

    Your comments are no great insight, they are actually quite close to the views of India’s urban elite, who are among the principal opponents of democracy in India today.

    Why do you assume that democracy and corruption are mutually exclusive ? If you did some research you would find that corruption is correlated highly with income levels. So places like Qatar and Bahrain, which are rich but not democratic have lower corruption levels than India. But democracy is a great means to fight corruption, which is why I mentioned the RTI.

    Hedonist, Indians have fought to obtain, protect and sustain their democracy, please look up the Indian Emergency. And you cant deny them this. And again dont believe that you have made some great insight, what you said is what I have heard in my family since I was 5. Its only when I joined an NGO, and started learning about the majority of India’s populations through journal articles did I understand the real importance of democracy in India.

  11. Vikram Said:

    Odzer, I agree with you that provision of basic amenities in India is rife with corruption and inefficiency. And it absolutely needs to be fixed.

    But like I have mentioned to you before this is not the fundamental issue for the vast mass of India’s population, 60 % of Indians have to relieve themselves in the open, but for 80 % of those people that is not the most important issue.

    The more important issues for them are caste related (a relic from 2000 years of oppression) and price related. Price in particular, let me give you an example. Pakistan has been under military rule for most of the last 10 years, today its inflation is close to 25 % and its nearly bankrupt, India’s inflation is 8.8 %, and over the last 10 years has been considerably less than that of our neighbouring country (inspite of the fact that it gets oil at cheaper rates than India does). This is because price rise is the number one issue for voters in urban/semi-urban India, and a lot of effort goes into making sure that inflation stays under control, because the survival of a government depends on it.

  12. hedonist666 Said:

    If you take the definition of “democracy” and distil it until you are left with the core; a government elected by its people. Then perhaps yes, India is a democracy. But written between the lines is the implication that the government, being elected by the people, is a representation of the ideals and policy which the voters support. In a democracy, the voters elect the representatives amongst themselves, who they feel will protect their interests and those of the country. Do you think this is happening? Are you even 100% sure that the elections are totally fair? I don’t trust politicians even in the most “developed” or “forward thinking” of nations. If you knew me, you would also know I expect conspiracies everywhere. I cannot accept that things are just as they seem.

    If the public is either mislead, or bribed, or simply unaware of the policy the politicians of their choice represent, the system does not work.

    In India there is a significant disconnect between the people’s interests and the government policy on various topics. Mainly because the people at the top look out only for themselves. No matter how often the government changes (peacefully!) if this gap is not bridged, then how is this democracy functioning as one?

    Growing up as mentioned in my post I was fiercely idealistic, wishing for the world to change, listening to John Lennon’s “Imagine” and wholeheartedly agreeing. Even thinking the concept of communism is a great idea. A government that cares about its citizens. Only, reality is different. People are not nice and caring, when push comes to shove. Perhaps the main Marxist idea I can still agree with is that when the masses are oppressed, a revolution is required in order to change direction. Coming back to my previous mention of the word “conspiracy”; perhaps the good, kind people that behind the scenes orchestrate Indian Government (no matter if the figures in the front keep changing), are trying to push various buttons until this revolution finally takes place. And after some more blood spill, misery and maybe genocide, perhaps the people will be liberated…

    Oh and you keep pointing at the fact that I shouldn’t think I’m presenting innovative ideas. I’m not. I was frustrated, and decided to write a post about something, this being my blog, was the obvious choice as a medium. I was venting, and still am. And I personally don’t take myself or my opinions as seriously as you seem to. I’m not doing this for you, I’m not doing it to change the world. I’m just entertaining myself.. it keeps me off the street so to speak.

  13. hedonist666 Said:

    Oh and another thing, Vikram. My choice of the word “fanatic” seems to have really upset you. How about we replace that with “passionate”. That should do to make it sound all warm and fuzzy… 🙂

  14. Vikram Said:

    Hedonist, you made some blanket statements about Indians being fanatics, and I provided you with clear evidence that they are not, if you simply chose to ignore my rational arguments and evidence then there is not much I can do.

    See, you cant change the world by being idealistic, you have to fight. And this takes a lot of courage, and in a country as large as India it takes a lot of time and a lot of effort.

    Since you have only recently been in India, you have no idea how much the place has changed in the last 60 years. Even 20 years ago, a female Dalit chief minister of India’s largest state would have been unimaginable, today she has been elected by a clear majority after a long struggle and some clever ‘social engineering’. Thats democracy. Now whether she will change things or not, we will only know in 3 years time.

  15. astralwicks Said:

    Hi hedonist. Extending the cynicism I can only make sense of ALL society only as a social experiment. Without getting lost in the romantic notions of an ancient glorious spiritual past etc of India, lets see India for what it is.

    An amorphous cantankerous corrupt people who are trying…just about lets say. I will avoid the talented hard working and other equally romantic bits. You don’t believe in that anyways.

    Enjoy the reality show…it can still surprise you. Or have you already written the ending?

  16. hedonist666 Said:

    @Vikram. Yes I made a blanket statement about Indians. So? I love stereotypes for what they are; exaggerations of reality, but mostly with some grain of truth.. Now how can I appease you….. I could say I think the British are like small children and the government is acting like an overzealous nanny. Another blanket statement. This time not about India.

    I give you that though, India has changed a lot over the past 60 years. So have other former colonies. For that matter so has Europe…

    @astralwicks: Yes of course, that is perfectly sensible. All society is a social experiment, only the premise of the experiment keeps changing according to place and situation. Thanks for stopping by and welcome to the lynching by the way 😉

  17. odzer Said:

    @ Hedonist/Vikram : Fanatics or not. Hmmmmm difficult question. Indians are certainly emotional and unstable. They are also easily led. Although they are not passionate about things that they have grown used to. For example if there is a giant big garbage dump just outside their homes they would not care enough to remove it. I am not going to bit the bullet and analyze India. I simply do not have enough time in this lifetime for it.

    Change in government, peaceful or not is pointless if that change does not bring about a change in peoples lives. The common people half of them who can not even read or write will vote anyway as long as they are promised some tid bits. As for a comparison with our neighbours you can toss any figures about. India has a higher infant mortality rate than Bangladesh, how about that? India also has a lower GDP than Bhutan. Why don’t you compare India with Maldives then? In the last 60 years we have had plenty of chances to fix a lot of things and we have only scraped the surface. Clearly there is a lot more hot air when it comes to India and a lot more puff than substance.

    We have left the door wide open to our own home. We are the one’s that have to take responsibility and fix it. As an international businessman let me say this that my confidence in India at this time is at an all time low. I hope that from here things will be so that we can have a better chance of not being slaughtered in our own homes and cities.

  18. Guny Said:

    Hey Odzer, whats up man?

    @Vikram: I find your reaction very ironic; the very meaning of the word “fanatic” is:
    A person motivated by irrational enthusiasm (as for a cause)
    “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject”–Winston Churchill (To quote Odzer’s favourite figure)

    The whole argument of whether or not Indians are fanatics seems to be beautifully demonstrated by your comments.
    Fanaticism need not be a bad thing, BUT only if the cause is worthwhile.

    The biggest problem in India is that we’re fanatical about the most inconsequential things. We kill thousands over a building, we riot over religion-inspired revenge, we fight over states that want nothing to do with us (Kashmir, pretty much all of North East India). Why aren’t we fanatical about putting a stop to child marriages, women being sold like cattle, people being burned as witches, corrupt politicians, the ever increasing gap between the rich and the poor, and I could go on and on naming idealistic crap…

    The point being that we’re so fanatical that we cannot see the forest for the trees.

    India is indeed the largest deMOCKracy, where a currency note goes further than policy, where politics is a family business, where the bigger player always wins.

    In the last 60 years India has developed, but so has the level of corruption, violence, economic disparity, etc.

    I leave all of you with one question: Most countries have been able to carve a niche or be known for something; But what is India good at?

  19. Vikram Said:

    Odzer, the comparison with Pakistan was to illustrate how democracy can affect day-to-day lives, I am not saying that India is better than country X etc. And in any case, it is more apt to compare Bangladesh to a state like Maharashtra or Kerala than whole India.

    The claim that change in governments do not change people’s lives is not true, good examples are NREGA and RTI. I have already told you about land redistribution in UP after Mayawati came to power.

    Hedonist, I am looking for objectivity not appeasement. I have mentioned Europe before not to demean anybody, but as a point of comparison. If you read my blog and carefully read what I say you will realize that I am not an irrational jingoist, I am often critical about India, but I am always careful to make sure that it is well-researched criticism.

  20. Vikram Said:

    Guny, we have to fight both to protect our country from outsiders and the internal filth in our society, they dont have to be mutually exclusive.

    What is India good at ?
    Here goes,
    150 million people lifted out of poverty in the last 2 decades
    9 % literacy in 1947 -> 65 % in 2001
    28 yrs life expectancy in 1947 -> 69 yrs in 2007
    worlds largest democracy
    dalit chief justice, dalit president, dalit chief minister
    sikh prime minister, muslim president
    28 states each with its own language, script, cuisine and culture(s)
    Every major religion represented with its own India specific culture
    World heritage sites representing Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism and Sikhism
    Well established film industries in 6 languages
    One of only 4 countries to have its flag on the moon

  21. Vikram Said:

    I am seriously spamming your blog Hedonist, sorry, but one last word to Guny. Please see my posts and let me know exactly what I said was irrational and what Hedonist has said that should make me ‘change my mind’.

    I will not comment after this and leave you guys alone. 🙂

  22. odzer Said:

    @ Vikram : You are right Bangladesh can not be compared with India. Pakistan can not be compared with India either. That is what I was trying to tell you. Basically most Academic stuff is made up. You can conclude anything you want to conclude as long as you dress it up smartly.” If your blah blah finger is bigger than your other finger you are gay!”

    It is not simply about being rational, logical and correct. It is also about living and experiencing it. Our life is nothing but just an experience. Anyway I dont want to give you more gyaan. Rather I can not.

    Lets talk a bit about Mayawati now. She is more ugly than my big, hairy fat brown ass. Though that is not the reason why I do not like her. What I feel is that she is simply a maverick and she is too insignificant to be of any real importance. Next election she will be thrown off. In any case a person who has just remodeled her office to have a 7 star bathroom, an elevator leading up to it directly, someone who wants to buy a new business jet, moves around with 300 security people and makes sure everything is shut down before Her Imperial Majesty arrives, someone who builds and inaugurates her own statues while running one of the most disgustingly poor Indian states is just tacky. In India image does matter so even if you are corrupt and dishonest if you do not do it right after a while people will throw you off.

    Now about RTI, whoa! Do not even get me started. You know my little plastic campaign right? Guess how much it costs to get one page of RTI information? 10 Rupees per page in Chandigarh. The government can simply inundate me with paper and bankrupt me. What good is this RTI then? It is tedious to file an application, takes forever to get answers, it is expensive and moreover the process is such that half the population that cant read or write can not do a thing with it. So it exists, big deal. When my grandfather passed away I tried to get a copy of his registered will from the Registrars office here, guess what it had been removed from the records deliberately and never traced again. Fat lot of good is RTI when bureaucrats can make any record disappear that they want to. When it comes to the experience India does make you a cynic but it also makes you very patient. So perhaps to answer the question that Guny asked you, India’s contribution to the world is patience.

  23. odzer Said:

    @ Guny : Well hullo there.

    You write very well! It makes an interesting read and to be honest a bit refreshing after all the blame shifting we have been having here in the media.

  24. hedonist666 Said:

    @Vikram : go ahead keep spamming, if it irritated me, I would have removed your comments a long time ago.

    Objectivity – ha! Why should I be objective? I am writing what I feel, whether exaggerated or stereotypical or mean or unfair.. that doesn’t matter! I appreciate that other people write blogs which are meant to be objective and let people make up their minds themselves about certain issues. BUT: I did not start my blog for that purpose! I think irony and sarcasm are a huge part of every single one of my posts (perhaps except the ones about food). Why? Because that is who I am. I am a cynic to the core. I will make fun of things I disagree with. And I will generalize and say outrageous things because that’s my way of dealing with the world. For god’s sake, I spend my evenings watching British stand up comedy whenever possible. Perhaps it’s rubbing off on me. As I see it, the readers of my blog are just passing by, guests in my domain, catching a glimpse of my thoughts of that moment. And if they disagree, they are more than welcome to. If they agree, that’s fine too. But the bottom line is that I really do not care who disagrees or agrees with me. The activity or writing the posts themselves is where I derive my satisfaction.

  25. Guny Said:

    @ Vikram: Fanatic – yes I still stick by it, you are giving all the stats you can to prove that Hedonist is wrong or too drastic in her self proclaimed over the top assumption.

    I don’t even want to start about UP, was born there and seem enough to not give a fart about what any of the politicians claim. Hell I can still buy a woman for 50/- (might have come down due to credit crunch)

    Lets look at some of the stats:-
    150 million ppl lifted out of poverty and how many born into it??? Poverty- nice little line marked by a paper pushing bureaucrat. Great we have more ppl above the SO called line, but still cant afford shit. In 1947 the purchasing power of an anna was more than what it is now!!!! 6 June, 1966: Rupee is devalued, Rs 4.76 = $1, AFTER Devaluation, Rs 7.50 = $1!!!
    March 1993: Unified exchange rate: $1 = Rs 31.37
    I could keep giving it……..lets jump ahead 1 U.S. dollar = 49.0797546 Indian rupees TODAY!!! Hmmmmmm nice PPP.
    Literacy: Seeing as you’re quoting statistics, I must assume that you still believe Kerala is the most literate state in India today. According to the UNESCO, literacy makes a person apt and able to function within society using language skills (reading & writing) and numeracy. The pistake of the Indian pencil pushers is that for statistical purposes, anybody who can read and write his own name is considered literate and can introduce himself with a statement such as “Myself, *** ****!”. In reality, having been to the North East, and actually having access to government data, Nagaland still tops the literacy chart, but of course not in official statistics. The reason why Kerala is at the top, it’s “God’s own country” which sounds much nicer for the Incredible India campaign. (Which is a huge waste of money)
    Moving on… Life expectancy: I never knew India was the only place on earth where life expectancy increased since 1947. Was that India’s own achievement per se, or was it a global medical advancement.

    World’s largest democracy, well we have debated that already, let’s not get into it again.

    And finally, yes we have lower caste politicians now. But with beautiful laws regarding reservation, how does it help when resentment between castes is indirectly encouraged. It took us 60 years to get there; even though our own Constitution was written by a Dalit. (For very interesting political reasons, this point is worth researching!)
    If at the top you have a few educated people from minority groups, but at the bottom, the people do not want to mingle, instead want to remain only in their own close-knit communities.
    The Prime Minister – widely known as Sonia Gandhi’s puppet. (He was doing much better as a Finance Minister)
    The President – completely inconsequential in a country like India, it’s mainly a ceremonial position.

    Politicians, Dalit or otherwise, are still scum. It does not matter where they came from, once they’re in the almighty chair, all they care about is their Swiss bank accounts, etc.

    Diversity is not a USP of India; the UK is diverse, although on a smaller scale, with the Scottish still wishing for their independence.

    Religious diversity exists everywhere in the world. With for example Christians in Germany being different from Christians in Somalia as well as in Russia, or India for that matter. None of the things you are mentioning are unique or specific to India.

    World heritage sites in India which draw plenty of tourists who only come there to find out they have been defiled, broken, or pissed on by the general public. Some of which were broken down due to political power play in the past 60 years. In any case I asked about “India”, which in its current form only existed for 60 years.

    Our Film Industries; if they’re not copying each other, they’re remaking foreign films. Even the ever increasing number of TV soaps are imported from elsewhere.

    As for the flag on the moon; you have said yourself, one out of 4. Not specific to India. And ironic; we can put a flag on the moon but we cannot put food on a poor man’s table. (he probably doesn’t even have a table to begin with)

    I haven’t received an answer to this question even when I asked politicians and the common man and various degrees in between.

    I’m fanatically proud of being Indian but haven’t found a valid reason yet. And therein lies our problem.
    Rock on

  26. Vikram Said:

    Hey Hedonist and Guny, sorry I broke my word, but you might understand more about where I am coming from in this post of mine http://vikramvgarg.wordpress.com/2008/11/05/what-is-india/ ….. wrote it about 3 weeks ago actually

  27. kanagu Said:

    Each and every country has its own pros and cons.. and unfortunately for India the leaders were in the cons list which makes including me to think that its very hard to bring this nation out of apathy.
    But there are other good things in our country like the youths who are all matured enough to think about the country and what can be done to improve this nation and many a things..


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