Weak India, strong Indians


While India may not have grown to a level it aspired to on the world stage, Indians are growing and building muscles abroad. The latest Indian making waves on the global screen is Rishi Sunak, who is “widening his lead” in the Conservatives’ race for the post of UK Prime Minister. Having functioned as British Chancellor of the Exchequer, he already has earned a name that helped him in the present build-up for the top governmental post. Britain has a string of top Indian personalities in other fields too, including for instance the Mittals who run steel mills and hold an unassailable position in the business world there. Late VS Naipaul and Salman Rushdie were among the very many in the literary field, not to mention the long list of actors, models, musicians, academicians and doctors of Indian origin in the UK. They are a class by themselves.
A profusion of Indians through generations of settlers in the US made India proud. Vice President Kamala Harris, with a mix of Indian and African blood, stands a chance to be President. Several Nobel laureates from the US had Indian origins, while those from within India are not winning such top honours in recent times. True, Indians with a good basic educational background are excelling in the academic and research fields in the US due to the opportunities on offer there. Set against this, academic excellence is somewhat alien to modern India. Top IT companies in the US have Indians in the lead; and a top post like the CEO in Pepsi was held by an Indian woman executive.
Notably, Canada is having Indians excelling in various fields including in business, politics and government. The Justin Trudeau cabinet carried four Indian representations while the Sikh community there has been an impressive presence. To top the chart, Anita Anand became the defence minister. New Zealand has an Indian, Priyanca, as cabinet minister. Malaysia’s highly acclaimed Mahathir Mohamad, for another. They have all acquitted themselves well and have not got into any major scams or scandals, unlike India’s own inbuilt breed of politicians and business sharks.
It is widely recognized that the governance systems in India, despite the legacy of the British Raj, moves slowly and produces less results compared to the dynamism with which the modern world shapes itself up even in the Asian continent. China happens to be the top performer but nations like Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan etc have grown by leaps and bounds, taking lessons from the growth of Japan as a great industrial power. When will Indians in India excel in their chosen field through merit alone?