I happened to be in Chennai this Monday to catch my flight to Jakarta to attend a five days conference of Global leaders of a philanthropic foundation which collaborates between various social service organisations that work in the under developed and developing countries. Tuesday early morning I went for a beach side walk with a friend of mine in whose house I spent the night in Chennai and while walking we met a gentleman who works with a leading software development company in Chennai. We got befriended soon and started discussing on various national issues. He was a person born and brought up in Northern India, came and settled in Chennai for the past couple of decades and lives in a plum locality in Chennai. He was complaining about the uncleanliness, corruption, poverty, illiteracy, lack of proper infrastructure and various issues that any common Indian would talk about whenever he gets a chance to open up.
I asked him one question “Sir..you are an Indian and don’t you have a responsibility to do something towards this cause when you have the capabilities to do the same?” He shirked off my question and said “You know....Reji?once I take retirement from my job I will either go out of this @@@@@@@ country or I will buy a house in Hiranandani or The Summit where I will get western facilities and I will spend the rest of my life there.”...I was really feeling sad about this alien INDIAN.I was quite perturbed at the attitude of this gentleman and couldn\'t talk to him much further as I had to rush to the airport the same morning.
I deliberated myself to pen down this incident after we started off with the conference at Jakarta with a group of philanthropists who have been doing a great deal of social transformation projects in countries like India. I found them as a bunch of folks who are committed to spend their time, energy and resources including finances for these under developed countries and hardly any of them were of indigenous genre except a few of us.
On one hand we see our own people who are hardly concerned to raise even their little finger to do something for our own nation, which has helped them achieve spectacular success in their career but just want to confine themselves to their comfort zones, but on the other hand I see people who are not Indians but still have a great heart to see India being transformed.
I think it is the high time that we need to walk out of our comfort zones to see our nation getting on to the top. It is very easy to lament, complain and put blame on the system, but let’s individually ask a question “WHAT CAN I DO PERSONALLY TO SEE MY NATION AND ITS PEOPLE PROGRESS”.
In continuation to my previous post on WHAT CAN I DO TO SEE MY NATION CHANGE,I would love to share a small narrative that I read in one of the editions of the book Chicken Soup for the Soul.You would surely love reading this..
The following words were written on the tomb of an Anglican bishop:
“When I was young and free and my imagination had no limits, I dreamed of changing the world. As I grew older and wiser, I discovered the world would not change, so I shortened my sights somewhat and decided to change only my country. But it, too, seemed immovable.\"
“As I grew in age, in one last desperate attempt, I settled for changing only my family, those closest to me, but alas, they would have none of it.
“And now as I lie on my deathbed, I suddenly realize: If I had only changed myself first, then by example I would have changed my family.
“From their inspiration and encouragement, I would then have been able to better my country and, who knows, I may have even changed the world.”