I was reading Thomas Friedman's "The World is Flat" where he was making a point about the major decisions that shook the world being taken by a few people who genuinely wanted to see their countries progress ahead. A few examples are:
1.Deng Xiaoping tossing aside communism with the sentence "Black cat, white cat, all that matters is that it catches mice"
2.Dr. Manmohan Singh opening up India's market without indulging in any major debate. 3.Ernesto Zedillo, the formaer president of mexico remarking that all the decisions to open the Mexican economy were taken by three people.
4.Similar case with Mikhail Gorbachev and Margaret Thatcher.
Dr. Manmohan Singh has come a long way since those path breaking times of 1991. Infact now, technically speaking, he has gone one step higher, to become the prime minister of India. Again, technically, he has higher powers than what he had in 1991. But are these 'technicalities' consistent with the 'practical realities'? Lets have a look.
In 1991, as far as I remember, there was not much of significant opposition to these reforms. That was when India was almost bankrupt, and even our gold reserves were pledged. It was a shameful period indeed, but the 9 year old me could not make much out of it. But I am thankful that these reforms came about. The overall access to education, employment opportunities, choices as a customer have increased tremendously and I can have a life on par with that of the western Europeans/Americans staying in India itself.
Fast forward to 2006, where Dr. Manmohan Singh is forever on the defensive courtesy of the fractured mandate given by the ever confused and ever confusing Indian public. Every decision be it political or economic has to pass the seal of approval of the biggest thieves in india, the left. (this should be proof enough that I am moving towards the centre from my leftist leanings.) On top of this are the biggest hypocrites in India, the BJP who are behaving like true spoilsports. Add to this the minority appeasers like Mulayam Singh yadav, Ram Vilas Paswan and the Congress itself, its still a wonder that Dr. Manmohan Singh has not gone mad yet. Hats off to you sir.
Why is this so? Do we need to go to depths like bankcruptcy to start taking tough decisions? Can't we make hay while the sun shines? These, I know are questions that will elicit no answers. But I still ask them.....the eternal foolish ideal optimist that I am.....