So,what hopes for our leaders to take India forward?
E ven highly educated Indians, I mean those with foreign education qualifications and training don’t seem to know how the world is moving forward. Those Indians with foreign qualifications, with MBAs, are employed in corporate world.
They are either owner entrepreneurs or employed by businessmen at high salaries. Those with other higher qualifications, Ph.Ds or such academic qualifications, like our own Prime Minister are either senior bureaucrats all their lives or academics like university professors. These are the two classes (types) of highly educated Indians.
The others are bureaucrats or independently or otherwise, employed the younger ones are working in new businesses like the media, TV and other new services.
Those in politics, the seniors are tired Congressmen or BJP wallahs! The others like Mulayam Singh or Chandrasekhar or even Lalu Yadav or Dravidian leaders are, even with or without some education, are caught up in their own narrow political groves!
Where are the true leaders? In thought and action? The Communists are the leftovers from the past! Or, who else comes to mind? I can’t think of one name that catches my imagination!
The outside world is driven by small men. George Bush and Tony Blair might hold high offices. But their minds are in the old leadership mould. They are in one sense simpletons, who neither understand the big issues nor they care for! History they seem to not interested! Nor the other leaders. May be I have some admiration for the, now- much-harassed French President and the German Chancellor! They too now face internal revolts! Nothing unusual in democracies. More so in such mature democracies which had seen great historical pasts!
What agitates me is that in India, I mean inside India, we don’t seem to be very worried about what India’s future, both the short and long-run future is likely to be.
L.K.Advani’s remarks on Jinnah had created some debate. Yes, even here, we criticise Advani, without having a hard look at who were all the other guilty men of the Partition of India. We can’t blame Jinnah alone. Ram Jethmalani, the eminent lawyer whose legal brains I admire but not his political judgements. Yet, he says in a column that he knew Jinnah so well and also as a fellow Sinhi, he also knew what Advani’s mind is also like. No communalism we can throw at Jinnah or Advani so easily without knowing their own backgrounds. Yes, I too, with my own reading of the Partition days history, would equally hold no less responsible Gandhi, Nehru, Patel, Rajaji and many others.
I read the two recent biographies of Stafford Cripps and also the autobiography of J.B.Kripalani. Cripps Mission could have saved a united India. Gandhiji didn’t attend the Cripps Mission meetings fully. After the first he went away to Wardha, says Kripalani! Gandhiji was an impulsive person, he didn’t see the opportunities offered by the Cripps Mission. He used irresponsible language! Nehru, though being a long-time friend of Cripps, didn’t rise up to the occasion and act decisively.
The result: Indians fell into the trap of Churchill who in anyway, didn’t want the Mission but had to act under pressure from Roosevelt. India lost a historic opportunity. Jinnah himself became a victim of the gathering forces.
Now, the past is past! What now we can do? What chances for India and Pakistan to come closer? Why not India and Pakistan join into a single nation!
Yes, big thought? Yes, the people in Pakistan, including the higher society, seem to be feeling a nostalgia. Why not open up all sectors so that there is free movement of students, peoples, industrialists and the common people?
Let some open talk take place. All our senior politicians ,even those who live in retirement are airing their loud thinking! Fear? Yes, Indians are by nature a very fearful people, it looks! Great historic opportunities come without ordinary people or even historic-minded intellectuals foreseeing! Sometimes great statesmen emerge out of the ordinary event.