Yesterday we landed in Delhi around 9:15 pm. Indian Airlines was as usual spot on time in being late. My uncle, a General in the army came to pick us up and I thought some Minister or some such celebrity had arrived looking at the bundobast. A Car, a Jeep and another vehicle with some stiff looking soldiers who carried our bags and stuff. What a ride in the Flag Car. We felt like royalty!!! We reached his huge bungalow around 10 where the bachelor party for his son, my cousin brother was just about stirring to life. A quick change and I was met with a colorful sea of people in the lawns. I have been to lots of Army parties so knew what to expect. Uniformed waiters who arrive at our side the moment your glass in empty, lovely arrangements. Since it was a bachelor party the dress code was informal. I really missed my Tee that I had left back home. It had a nice caption “ Single and not ready to mingle” ;)
Heard about the Pramod Mahajan episode at the party. Was relieved to hear that it was his own brother and not some terrorist. Relieved because if it was a terrorist then we would have a situation like after Raj Kumar’s or IG’s death in our hands. The Raj Kumar episode was dissected in the media and one speaker attributed it to the growing divide between the haves and the have-nots. I do not necessary agree with this view because the people who took to the streets were opportunists waiting for an excuse to have fun.
But I now realize that the so-called rapid development the country is experiencing is benefiting the rich and the educated middle class only. There is still a huge sector apart from IT that still needs to develop in order to absorb the non IT people into the development mainstream.
I guess if I was one of them I too would resent the opportunities and benefits some sections are enjoying while I had no scope for such jobs because my qualification is useless for the IT sector. And it is these people who vote for Communists. I saw Achudanandan speaking to the media yesterday and he scoffed the ‘so-called-development agenda’ of the Congress. Suddenly it fell into place. There is a huge sea of people out there that are damn scared. Their skills are no longer relevant in the IT centric economy. They fear the development, which they feel, will benefit the IT sector only. And it is this fear that makes them vote for people like Achudanandan. They need someone to protect their jobs and look out for them too. And they look at ‘development’ as a phenomenon that will make them redundant.
(Addendum) Look at my own seniors in college. Of the girls who passed out with an English degree only 15 % of are employed in the IT sector. And that’s because they can understand technology and can communicate the same in simple language to customers, stake holders, media etc. The rest are either struggling are junior journos or as magazine writers or copy writers. These girls are the perfect example of the many people who have not benefited by the IT boom.
I think the government must make sure that the generation that was unable to board the IT bus do not feel marginalized. When opportunities exist for everyone, real development will take place. For once I sympathize with a huge demography of people who feel resentment for the sunshine children, ie the techies and support services that revolve around IT.
Just a thought of a very inexperienced political commentor :p Please don't throw brick bats at me :))