Sunday, August 10, 2008

Mr. Karat, when will you guys learn?

"Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Prakash Karat on Saturday said that the Left parties were facing three major challenges - the impact of globalisation and neo-liberal policies; increasing collaboration of the ruling classes with imperialism that poses threat to sovereignity and independent foreign policy; and communal designs that threaten the social fabric.", read the special correspondent report in The Hindu on 10th August.

How can people be so parochial in the 21st century? The communal part, he got right; but the remaining two challenges, I don't think so. You can't look at 21st century changes with a 19th century eye. That's what the left parties are doing. They fail to evolve their ideologies based on the time and place.

Globalisation and liberal policies are good from the economic point of view, come on, they were the two factors that led to the ascend of a dominant middle class in India. Yes, it is true that some, unable to make use of the advantage of the latest technologies enabling high level of international collaboration, have been left in the lurch. But for that it is not globalisation that one has to blame. It is the mindset of India's society. We revel in mediocrity and are averse to change. We prefer to be comfortable within the security of our own homes, or within that of a secured pay. Risk is as foreign to an average Indian as a Pope would be in Saudi Arabia.

Attack that mindset, imbibe in the people a dynamic nature, a competitive spirit and create an environment where the risk takers are not frowned upon. Come on, nature bred us with the concept of Survival of the Fittest. Every human born has the capacity to challenge all odds and come out victorious, or at least has the capacity to learn in the process. Why doubt that potential? Why create non-vibrant citizens who have a secured income rendering them with a lackadaisical spirit, with no desire to compete and challenge, with no desire to satiate their own free spirit? Yes, that was the pre-1990 India. Maybe that was because the priorities were different then, but now they certainly don't fit into the scheme of things.

I thought the left parties would have learnt that lesson after their computer debacle in West Bengal. They vociferously opposed computerization citing loss of jobs and even banned computerization in West Bengal. The consequences in Bengal and the advantages that computers have brought to us is for all to see. I guess, old habits die hard.

Now, we need to ask ourselves only one question to decide whether globalisation is good or bad. Should we develop fast, but ya, with a few missing the bandwagon initially; or slow and steady, helping everyone on and then finally when we reach the next step, to see that other countries have climbed a further ten? Globalisation is a fast way. Trust the initial tortoises to catch up. They will catch up, for no man can be kept down for long.

So in the long run development and respect from other nations can be created by globalisation. Being seen as more open, more receptive to change, more dynamic, all these which management principles characterise as essential traits for a good leader, will only propel India to become a leader.

Look at it from this angle and then how can greater international collaboration be an imperialistic conspiracy?

1 comment:

D said...

While i agree that a liberalistic domestic market open to free-market entrepreneurialism would definately do for India what it did for Singapore, i would'nt think it wise for Indian foreign policy,(especially relating to trade)to assume a passive role, just so that we could "globalize". Keeping in mind that India is'nt a basket case like Singapore, where cultural notions and work ethics barely work against the western grain. A sentiment of conservatism in the interest of protecting diversity and ensuring equality is not a lost cause provided it does't hinder basic grassroot development. Protectionism is a valuable tool especially since India has only just begun to emerge as an independant force..and the most interesting advantage we have is the cultural foundation that our intellectual work force springs from. As a communist party,what more could they possibly suggest,when ideals such as equality and diminishing class discrepancies exist as the norm. Although i agree that perhaps it would in their best interest to seem valid amidst the somewhat archaic methods they purport to getting there.