Sixty Years Young
India turned 60 today.
I usually don’t like the once-in-a-year-patriotism flavored ‘Happy I-Day’ emails, articles etc – either too sappy and sentimental or overtly patriotic for my taste. But I suppose this is a special birthday, so some indulgence is expected on the lines of my previous brief post.
So Swatantra Divas ki shubhkamnaeein and all that.
(Pic: Hindustan Times)
Interestingly, the time I left India was just after the half-centenary celebrations and since then I have had the opportunity to look at India from a slightly outsider’s perspective. The biggest difference between then and now I feel is a sense of confidence. I know its a very abstract concept that I am not really sure how to describe. But it is a sense I feel permeating from recent reports about/from India (both positive and negative), from talking to the folks back home and from the beats of the streets on the few recent occasions I went back there. I am not sure of what brought this about – economic success has a lot to do with it surely, perhaps helped a bit from the changing global geo-political, social and economic conditions. It is also true that we have numerous deficiencies – infrastructure, public health, literacy, female empowerment etc. to just name a few. But it is certain that India of today is far more self-assured and confident that problems can be tackled and the future is justifiably bright.
For a more detailed analysis of India at the cross-roads read Rohit’s excellent piece.