letters to the editor

letter to the editor
letter to the editor

How Can India Unlock Its Human Potential?

Vijay Rajvaidya’s IC Opinion (The Global Indian Phenomenon, August 2016)  inspired me to write this note. 

India is ready for double digit growth in coming years, as noted by the Economic Survey 2015-16. However, to make it sustainable, the Government of India has to focus special attention to empower its human capital.

The most effective economic policies are ones that improve quality of life including productivity. India has become the tenth largest economy in the world in terms of GDP but still has an extremely low per capita GDP. The country placed at the 148th position among the 189 countries surveyed, as per the World Bank. This is perhaps the most visible challenge.

India could see an economic renaissance like China, but must invest in the development of human resources. A comprehensive package for unlocking human capital must discuss issues like ensuring quality education, enhancing primary and reproductive health including population stabilization, strengthening the decision making power of women, improving physical living conditions like sanitation and water supply, shifting access of labor force from agriculture to non-agriculture sectors, and sustaining human capabilities in the context of climate change.

For more details see my article on unlocking the human potential  at http://kotharionindia.blogspot.in/2016/05/india-needs-to-be-as-wary-of-unlocking.html
Dev Kothari, email

Kashmir’s Girls
Adhik Kadam of Borderless World Foundation was featured in the IC cover story last month (Kashmir’s Girls, August 2016)  He will be honored at the Indians for Collective Action Annual Function on Saturday, October 8 in Milpitas, California.
Smita Patel, San Jose. 

India,: World’s Largest Exporter of Beef
I would like to respectfully differ from Krishna Upadhya’s assertion in the Letters to the Editor column (India Currents  August 2016), that Hinduism is an inclusive religion unlike others. If that is so, why are low caste Hindus treated like lepers and forced to suffer daily humiliations? There are approximately 167 million dalits in India.

The basic Vedanta philosophy that all minds are part of one single consciousness is a wonderful concept but hardly offers comfort for those who fail to win the lottery of life and are forced to endure lives of deprivation and misery. What hope of salvation and inclusion does Hinduism offer these poor souls? Hinduism is a stratified system of four major castes with clear winners and losers, layered on top of a fifth category of “untouchables” who are treated by higher castes as sub-human life forms.

Sadly, even the traditional Indian secularism is under further assault following the election of Prime Minister Modi who has chosen to remain silent while vigilante Hindu militant groups such as the Ba-jrang Dal sect viciously assault Dalits for the “capital crime” of slaughtering a cow. Why are cows given a free pass while their cousins, the water buffalos head to slaughter houses in such large numbers? India is now the largest exporter of beef in the world. A growing number of non-Hindus have expressed concern over the rise in Hindu radicalization and militancy, hardly a model of inclusion.
Jagjit Singh, email.

Editor’s Note:
We received several messages and emails appreciating the work done by Jaya Padmanabhan, our previous editor over the past four and a half years, who has left the IC family to pursue writing full-time. We wish her all the very best!

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