“As Hindus make up 80 per cent of the country’s population, the threat of Hindu fundamentalism is also as real as the minority backlash. But the greatest internal security threat is perhaps Left wing extremism.”
The ten political and social challenges that India has to deal with, according to author-historian Ramachandra Guha, speaking at a seminar organised by the Aspen Institute in Delhi:
1. Left wing extremism
2. Religious extremism
3. Corrupt centre
4. Decline of public institutions
5. Growing gap between rich and poor
6. Environment degradation
7. Political fragmentation of electoral system
8. Unreconciled borders
9. Unstable neighbourhoods
10. Apathy of the media
Read the full article: 10 things holding India back
Also read: Nandan Nilekani: the six things that changed India
Link courtesy Anand V.
God, finally enlightenment!!
Extremism, environmental problems, instability etc. are just symptoms of our inability to control birth rates.
Water scarcity, malnourishment, no access to health facilities, no access to educational facilities, bonded labour all are that much difficult to tackle if we cannot control ourselves from breeding like rats.
There are 600 million more people in India now then there was 50 years ago.
The United Nations’ latest ‘World Population Prospects’, estimates there will be 1,395m people in India by 2025, and 1,593m in 2050.
With the reasons Guha gives we wont be able to sustain that kind of population density (unlike countries like Israel, Japan, UK who currently do well with similar population densities as India).
Otherwise scenarios like this may become a reality for more and more people in India:
The eleventh reason…
Rantings by self appointed historian/experts like Guha on why Indian cannot be super power :)
How did churumuri absolve Guha of accusing the media guilty of apathy ?
What if the same statement was made by lets say somebody from RKM ?
And of course the usual distinction –
majority fundamentalism / minority backlash !
Oh..Hindu Fundamentalism came first..and then later comes the Minority Backlash.. ! Whom are you fooling Mr Guha ..Please stay in your your Guha…and dont come out and show ur ignorance.
Guha is absolutely right. Now, any answers for these ills?
what a load of crap!
Points 3 and 5 are found in every single nation on the planet. They are not things to be dealt with under the banner of “things holding India back” or under “greatest threat to India”!
A solution to point 8 is not possible as long as we keep chanting the hogwash chant of “Ahimsa”…what bull! the examples we teach our kids, Gandhi(“ji”) said if someone slaps u on one cheek show the other.yeh right! its like saying if China forcibly takes Arunachal, then show them assam and the rest of the “7-sisters” for the taking! Might as well gift everything out eh? TN as its own country, kashmir on its own to break its head between indepence n pakistan and so on n so forth!
Point 9 i hope we have no involvement in! that is just inviting trouble!
Point 10 …well should just be changed. its not apathy that bogs down our media. its exaggeration and sensationalising news and rumours to the extent that they become monetarily profitable!
Rest of it! go figure!
oh yeah, i do agree with guha on point 6. But unfortunately, that will not change unless our “people” change their attitudes.As a good example, i once read in the blog of a foreign tourist in india, to the indians it is crazy to walk to a place that is at a distance of more than 1 km. sigh on the the other hand i have frnds in germany who prefer cycling 11-15 km within half an hour instead of travelling the same distance by motor vehicles inthe same time!(travelling 14 km in a city like bengaluru does take more than half and hour-45 mins)!
AG – Agree with you completely. Breeding like rats has to be at the top of the list. If you have noticed, of late, issue of excess of population is undermined by people like Nandan Nilekani (Imagining India). Rather, they are applauding our breeding capacity by using jargons like human base, human capital and human resource. Just because he gets someone for a $ a day. Rest live like rats is not a concern. China’s growth is largely attributed to their population control measures. Our resources are heavily constrained, which will make this place completely inhabitable, if it is already not.
Does this so called “intellectual”, “historian” have any reasons for this order of ranking? :)
What does he mean when he says, “India should not try to be a dominant and powerful country, but a less discontented nation”??
maybe my parents should not have bred me. or may since they didnot live like rats it is ok for them to have bred me, since i also dont live like rats. but what about others -especially those who occupy the same space as i do? how dare they? it would have been better if their parents had stopped breeding, but aagidaagoytu, now they should stop breeding and get off my planet asap. especially those idiots in other cars around me during rush hour traffic.
yeah!! china has no rat problem. they dont live like rats. infact they live in advanced civilization that has made kiddish juvenile concept like brother and sister redundant especially if you want to live in cities where there are no rats. only tall and erect steel and glass buildings and wide open roads compensating for the freudian shortcommings
Let me give you an example of someone who bred like a rat: Laloo and his wife.
Justify that with meaningless sentences and non-facts.
caste system, gender issues, primary education, health…
poor guha, what a fool he is, and he doesnt know he is one! (or is he ignoring this obvious fact?)
what a poor country and poor media, we consider the likes of guha as “intellectuals”!!!
my response was mostly to abhi, but since you seem to be feeling self important and indignant enough to assume ownership of the most trivial and commonplace, and dare I say, “facty” of all diagnoses called as population. Here goes.
So your trophy “fact” is lalu’s 9 kids? LoL! what about them?
#1. which of your desired purushaarthas are they an obstacle to? which of them is holding you back from realizing your potential? flip question, what is it that you have done or are capable of doing, that they have not done or are incapable of doing, which makes them rats but not you? I’m sure your enlightened, “meaningful” sentence writing, factier than thou factual “facts” quoting self will not take recourse to a – I was born in a two kid family and am therefore not a rat – line.
So, which of them 9 kids is holding india back? Which of them is communal, extremist and anymore a burden on “environment” than you?
if lalu didn’t have those 9 kids, what is that india would have achieved, that it has not already achieved? Corollary- if, say, lalu and his 9 kids magically disappeared, which of india’s malaises would suddenly disappear, which of the various governance systems in india, would suddenly become effective?
next. which of lalu’s 9 kids ought not to procreate or have procreation rights inferior to your holy self?
Oh! I am twisting ‘facts’ its not the rats, but lalu who bred them that is the cause of problem? Please go back and read carefully. What is it about those kids that lalu bred that makes them the rats and not you? If I were lalu or a person like him, why would I assume that any of my 9 kids would burden the environment anymore than that anonymous guy on churumuri does, even if none of them is likely to be as facty and meaningfully sentence writing as him?
In anycase, even if lalu really bred rats, what are you going to do about it, other than listlessly flipping channels late night and whine about all the procreation he is doing? Atleast, what do you suggest ought to be done to lalu? And how much are willing to do to realize your suggestion?
Ok, so its not lalu alone, but people like lalu and who have bred 600 million kids since 1500. another ‘fact’. But lets repeat questions above.
#1. so which of them millions is an obstacle to your and india’s purushaarta? etc etc…
#2. how many amongst them has to disappear before india’s malaises suddenly disappear? …
#3. what do you propose to do with them? etc etc…
i am so impressed that you can write meaningful sentences and are filled with facts. but i am not impressed that you give stupid answers like it is a drain/strain on resources and is a cause of extremism, water scarcity etc., i am not even impressed by all the ’scientific’ articles you cite to give an aura of scholarship to hide your laziness. all this citing – all it is says is that you have an internet connection that works, you know English, and cognitive abilities that are atleast as great as that of pavlov’s primate subjects. Like them, when given a stimulus, you can also put a banana even if you call it “fact” or “meaningful sentence”, into the “right box”.
citing articles doesnot impress me especially when there is no demonstrated ability of being capable of posing your own questions or expectations or formulation about the problem. All you are doing is assuming that a formulation you found in some in article you cite, is yours and worse is relevant to our condition. it is not. first get your problem formulation right. and to do that requires more effort than taking lazy digs at people.
I see you like numbers, which you parade as facts (I have a hunch you believe facts are a substitute for coherence, but that’s just me)
So what about the 600 million? What is it relative to? Looks like you like your facts in charts. From you chart, between 1500 and 1950 west oirope(WO), India and America all grew at the similar rates in absolute numbers, and to a final baseline figure definitely more than india 1500. In terms of density 1500 India and 1950 WO, I am guessing, had comparable densities.
In 1500, China was “#1” and India was “#2” in the world almost by any measure. In 1950 WO was “#1”, even when on base numbers the density and numbers in WO was way more than it was in India of 1500. In absolute terms, the life of ordinary Chinese and Indians or WO, has not changed from 1500 and now. The production, consumption, life, including the urge to procreate, the means of doing it. Nothing has changed.
So numbers are comparable, and basic human condition has not changed. At the same time even on numbers comparable to India of 1500s, WO of 1950s was THE hot bed of bigotry, extremism, racism, colonialism, and all other such good qualities the world has EVER SEEN. In today’s world all asian countries to the west of LOC have a density lesser than India’s and yet breed more bigotry than India. So why is Iran, that instinctively believes in notions like kafir and fidayeen, with its decreasing fertility more of a bigot, than the rat breeding India? I dunno I am not facty enough, you are the facty one. you tell me.
science does not mean you take suggestive pictures of half naked third world people on lake beds and lecture them to quit breeding. What about building all the flashy towns for non-rat-like breeders in a place like SoCA and Las Vegas, while letting Baja California to be hung dry? Did you see any pictures of half naked bikini clad south californians in a story about environment recently? It doesn’t sell does it? What sells is half naked third world indians walking barefoot in the middle of an erstwhile lake. So rat like no ya. Chee non-bearable it is. Shy is only coming looking at that picture ya. These guys no, they breed like rats and put so much burden on mother earth ya. What to do? Why cant they be like Las-Vegas vaasis ya and do all the x-rated stuff in artificial pools and be facty like us ya.
haagalkaayige bevinkaayi saakshi andhaage, ee prachanna boudhange moogin tudili roudra saaldu anta baalakk anta obba bhaTTangi bere.
Oh yeah! forgot to add. lets not build systems that are relevant to our condition and context. let us simply xerox what already exists. and if the “solution” does not fit the “problem”, then let us blame the “problem”. it is after all more important live like tigers(i am guessing) than to live according our context.
TS – Of many of your paragraphs, I could only understand a few, since it is like a personal letter written to your grandfather who knows all personal things about you.
“I’m sure your enlightened, “meaningful” sentence writing, factier than thou factual “facts” quoting self will not take recourse to a – I was born in a two kid family and am therefore not a rat – line.”
Now I see what you say. You have taken my rat remark personally. Don’t get hung upon me – a ‘bhaTTangi/bevinkaayi’. Semantics is only figurative and being self critical. It is NOT about you or Lalu or AG or me. It is about how – excess population has put serious constraints on our resources and the cause for most of our ills.
One more thing – learn to make critisism about your country, your people and yourself. If you can not, atleast learn to tolerate when someone else does when its deserved. Educated people like you prove that even the population crisis is a symptom, real disease is lack of self introspection.
Dont stop TS, I like to listen to his rants.
BTW the rate at which we are breeding and mass-migrating to cities, blissfully unaware the power of effect of exponential growth (or rather not bothered beyond our personal well-being), it shouldnt be too far away before Malthus theories will be put to the test. Unless there is some way for us to spill over our borders and go occupying free space elsewhere.
The greatest solutions before India.
8. canada pr
9. aussie pr
10. uk pr
abhi noted. but the same applies to ideas also. people should learn to accept criticism of ideas and constantly reevaluate their “facts” otherwise even science is just superstition.
apart from empiricism, the only difference between religious texts and science is that the later is represented in secular terms. but if you expand the definition of secularism, especially in “social sciences” even that distinction is not valid.
otherwise in both of them the same dynamics are active. there is an etymology against which theories are tested and there is a discipline and honesty and understanding that is expected on the part of a student. without these, dropping “scientific” words like malthusian is about as random as me quoting a religious text in this context and equivalent to dropping a banana in the right box.
so what about malthusian catastrophe and theory? did we hear anything about its explicit and implicit assumptions? no. we are talking life here, did we hear anything about the unmodeled dynamics, no? is there any actual realization of that theory? no.
i anticipated this “fact” dropping, and that is why wrote that nonsense about how things havent changed for man. if you want science, here is one equally arbitrary “fact”: in systems chaos never decreases, irrespective of their evolution.
one of the problems with these measures and facts is that they are arbitrary. every single tribal is prolly a number in people living with less than a dollar metric. so what about it? as a group they have thrived for millenias together and have no impact on “environment”. what else have you and i accomplished more? are our lives anymore meaningful than theirs? not just poetically, but in real measurable terms?
there is nothing personal here. but this type of lazy thinking is what has led to monsters like those in china and Sanjay Gandhi, who forcefully abort and neuter people because one means one.
basic question is do we have system scaled appropriately to our condition? for example like election commission of india?
Completely agree with AG and Abhi.
Population is the root of all evil. We used to write them in our fifth standard essays. I don’t understand why the great intellectuals don’t understand this. But, Guha’s India after Gandhi is a very comprehensive book indeed
We plan to publish his TS’s epic rants as holy books and profit as only ones who will interpret them for the foolish masses. Just waiting for the chapters to build up.
Yeah, wonder why the politicians barely mention the issue of population growth and resources anymore (after all our countries boundaries are more or less fixed, in fact they only seem to be reducing). Our mis-management, inability to solve our own problems and lack of efficiency (as compared to western, east asian countries and some south american countries), will make Mr. Guha’s list grow larger in quick time.
The thing is other countries will have to take note at some point of time – we dont live in isolation. Poverty, malnutrition and disease in a major part of the world will not just be India’s problem, since the side effects are felt elsewhere – as the immigration consultant noted by listing the visas (BTW see the way Indian immigrants are not as welcome outside as they used to be in the past).
This is not a problem of nature, god etc. Nature does not care, if we over-populate without thought, the situation will be corrected – whether by war, invasion, natural disaster or disease. When someone told Sir MV that ‘God will take care of the extra children’, he replied ‘God wont’.
Guha will have a tougher time just grappling with the list in 30 years time – unless something has been done to correct this problem (or something drastic has happened to correct the problem).
high population is not as much a problem as it is a property of our demographics. when we falsely diagnose it as a problem, we are treating the wrong disease without ever solving the actual problem, which is the lack of systems to solve our actual problems at the scale demanded by our population. We use small scale systems on a large population and when it does not work, say population is a problem instead of fixing the system and then we have some people calling others rats, someothers deciding who should be neutered, someothers deciding who can have how many kids and so on.
example arkavathy river. arkavathy dried because of over utilization and simulataneous cutting off of its feeders. both hapenned because of lack of management and not due to population. infact arkavathy dried long ago when population was not even in a problem in blr.
again, i am not saying that the growth should not be managed. but population is not our primary problem. we should not fool ourselves that we can solve the population “problem”. The numbers are so stagerring that mis-diagnosis has massive consequences and so does wasting resources chasing a chimera.
finally, given our current lifestyle, dense cities are more efficient than villages. villages donot offer economies of scale that can sustain lifestyle. i am mot saying villages should somehow be inferior, what i am saying is it is very expensive and less productive to do that in villages and it is cheaper and you get more return on investments in cities. consider how difficult it is recruit and retain teachers and doctors and nurses in villages. why? is it just because of pay? or is something else at work there? majority of our people live in villages which are all distributed. imagine the cost/person of putting pipes, wires and roads to all. even if you do all that for 80% of the villages, which is a good rate, you still leave out hundreds of millions out. for our size we should have dozens of cities with more than 5 mil population and build them efficiently like bombay and poona, which are vertical cities and not like mysore and bangalore. but to do that you should realize the importance of cities and invest in manpower that can think about the cities before building flyovers.
AG. malnutrition. there are good numbers in india. but how much of it is due to lack of availability of food and how much of it is due to diet? do you know if these rates are adjusted to our diets? Quick peak into wiki says, malnuitrition index cannot be taken as a measure of number of people who went to bed hungry today.
I really wonder about rat abusers. They seem so much like their pet hates. Always running hither and tither causing one problem and then another. Just look at these specimen.”Population! Population! Reduce it! Reduce it! Else there will be war & famine! Yeah…but wonder why these rats par excellence never talk about the “how”. I think I know why. They don’t want to look like the people they pretend not to sleep with.
Don’t worry TS, it’s in the nature of rats to cause problems and then run away from solutions.
guys, please stop abusing rats! they did nothing wrong.
have to agree with TS.
How to control population/reduce population? kill all babies after the 2nd one in the family like the chinese? oh wait that is inhuman/infanticide/foeticide bla bla bla!
How bout condomn use? wait!!! our culture doesn’t exactly include our elders and our educationists teaching and discussing about sex and family planning. Besides, not all religions allow use of condomns/birth control! It is against religious ethics!
With crap like this there is no way that the population growth can be controlled in a nearly 1.2 billion population country. The only solution remains, as TS mentioned, use of systems designed and suited for large scale applications or for large populations.
And yes, it is not enough to just design and implement them. they need to be implemented on time without delays!
Dear Mr. Guha,
If India is 80% Hindu, and if that poses a threat, please get a majority of them converted. Am sure that it is your ilk that takes up the cudgels of the professional converters with your absurd philosophies. Psuedo intellectuals and psuedo seculars!!!
Prajwal, so why would some nations not pick up birth rates once their populations are under “control”? They don’t care to pick it up even when their birth rates are dangerously low. Why? Is population a function of economics or is it a function of culture? Or is it of both? If it is of both, then does it not go to say that our current population is an attribute of our national growth? No matter some fools don’t like it. Another question. What have we done or want to do about population that is not an attribute of our national growth? What about infiltration in the millions?
Let us remember that the Chinese model was not entirely coersive. It also relied on the base human instincts for reward without effort and the motive to make and “retain” wealth that some managed to create, without an extra mouth to feed. Their one child rule has many supporters amongst their urban people but this has also caused social imbalances with children being pampered and also left with large number of dependents to be supported by the few plus the added bonus of sex ratio imbalance.
Apart from the great quiz question of “how”, the rats in question would want to address another. Are we unable to support this natural growth because of a lack of resourses or because of our corrupt ways? If it is the latter then tell me how anybody can control population when they cannot cap corruption?
Im not sure if u understood what i said or if i do not understand what u say. But as far as my citing the chinese example is concerned, it was meant in a note of sarcasm. That will not be practical cos of all the activists and organisations that will use their freedom guaranteed by the “democratic” constitution to ensure that no such control law is passed or implemented.
The same applies to the second example of religion being used as an excuse to not control population.
As to why other countries do not pick up their birth rates i cannot answer it, but i wud like to know how u wud define dangerously low. It is to be noted, i think, If the birth rate is more than the death rate, then the population is obviously growing, whether or not ppl like it.
Also, it wud be stupid to not count population as a national growth attribute as population plays a decisive role in everything including usage and management of resources, economy, culture. But on the other hand, it is also foolish to say that because it is an attribute, it shud be allowed to grow freely and haphazardly.
Let us assume that we continue with no control. Sooner or later, we are bound to reach a number that cannot be supported by out resources. Now let us assume that control is implemented strictly and say every family is allowed to have 2 children only. In a country with a population of nearly 1.2 billion, even 2 children per family is quite a large number of ppl. Baseline, our numbers wont start decreasing and our existing populace will not start consuming less just because we practise birth control.
So i say again, we need to implement systems designed to deal with the size of our population and they need to be implemented on time. As far as corruption is concerned, it is again a question of mindset of ppl. No one can enforce 100% control over corruption. honesty and sincerity shud come form ppl, it cannot be implemented!
Prajwal – The Chinese method is artificial and inhuman. Unworkable.
The “rights” or religious activists may be saying the same thing. That’s ok.
On dangerously low birth rates, pls postulate the reality of demographic imbalance via immigration and minority growth rates.
Pls explain “freely and haphazardly”.
What systems short of natural impulse, will help “control” population?
What is the %age control that can be fixed on corruption vis a vis success with population control?
Are we still talking human beings or the zoo?
Probably the most meaningless set of comments ever seen on a churumuri post can be attributed to this trail of comments. AN interesting link to demography and its impact.
Thanks Yella Ok. I read Steyn’s piece before I slept. It’s as scary as it’s real.
But I’m pretty sure our radical humanists and one worldists, not to speak of rationalists and assorted fadists would scoff at all that and say to one’s face, “ha! So what? Are not Muslims human beings just like anybody else!?”