74th Independence Day Celebration & Challenges Ahead

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Red Fort

“A developed India, by 2020 or even earlier is not a dream. It need not even be a mere aspiration in the minds of many Indians. It is a mission we can all take up and accomplish.”

The famous quote by Late APJ Abdul Kalam in ‘ INDIA 2020 : A Vision for the New Millennium’. Do these professed words by the most beloved former President and great
scientist hold true in the present scenario?

It’s time for an introspection to all stakeholders because things are not changing at a desirable pace and form. If targets were achievable, then why did we fail so miserably?
Whether we lack vision, action plan or honest implementation at ground level or something else?

A chain of events has made 2020 a special year for India whether you like it or not.

The Corona Pandemic and its disturbing offshoot has captured the wild imagination of every common man. Over Two and half million Covid-19 Positive cases till now and approximately
half lakh consequential deaths is a new threat and challenge for economy, employment and development. India is on the verge of becoming the worst affected country in the world very soon.

How a poor common man is trapped in between governments apathy and snail pace of bureaucratic response to alleviate sufferings of the same. The mass exodus of Millions of labourers and their families from metro cities due to lockdown is reminiscent of Partition.

Mainstream media, especially electronic media are losing confidence, impartiality as well as hope as they are not able to highlight people’s problems and put questions against Government’s intention and action.

On the pretext of grabbing land of strategic importance and establishing hegemony in the South Asia and Asia Pacific Region, Chinese People Liberation Army cold blooded murdered 20 unarmed brave jawans in Galwan Valley. But, things went wrong against the aggressor’s intention.The whole Saga of Galwan Valley demeaned dragan’s status by appropriate response by our Jawans. Around 43 Chinese soldiers were sanitised as claimed by neutral media reports.The Galwan Valley Saga is historical and capable of reshaping the Geopolitics in the contemporary world.

In the backdrop of Chinese misadventure at border, our PM Narendra Modi has launched the “Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan” to make India self-reliant and to beat Chinese monopoly in the world’s leading manufacturing hub. It is a Herculean task to shift India’s service based economy to a manufacturing based economy. Although India is having demographic dividend, vast natural resources and hard working professionals and skilled labourers but without
institutional support, transparent and corruption free Government machineries, the very Atma Nirbhar spirit is a daydream to achieve.

Indian economy is reeling heavily under tremendous pressure from the Pandemic and consequential lockdown. Government must shift its priorities from emotive issues such as the religious issues to real issues like unemployment, deteriorating health and education sector, infrastructure development and upliftment of the common man etc.

Indian health sector is in tattered condition. From acquiring health education to providing minimal health service is a costly affair. A great attention, effort and soul to be provided by the Governments in the health sector. We cannot expect establishment of big corporate hospitals in rural areas. Government hospitals are to be revitalised by
adequate provision of financial and manpower support. Poor Indians cannot be left at the mercy of selfish private and corporate hospitals.

“National Educational Policy” was announced to redefine the landscape of education in India and to create Job Creators in place of Job Seekers. Formulation of policy is easier in comparison to implementation at the ground level. Inadequate infrastructure, peanut expenditure with respect to GDP and bitter truth of shattered education standards, it is not so easy to transform education in India.

Even after 73 years of independence, India miserably failed in the fight against natural calamities. In this year, flood has again ravaged North Bihar and Assam. This is a regular phenomena. The disaster management can be better formulated and implemented at the ground level. Irony is that fighting with natural calamities are having least priority for our policymakers and the Governments.

Let us not be hopeless. We must have confidence in the democratically chosen Government’s capability to do so. We need concerted effort by all stakeholders including our leaders, bureaucrats, intellectuals etc. who have ethical responsibility to elevate the status of India to the very notion of a developed nation. This independence day brought back memories of our forefathers’ freedom fight. We cannot afford to fail them by being a mute spectator.

Author of the article

– Dinesh Kumar

The Author is a Manager in Steel Authority of India Limited.


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