The Grass Root Level

Weaker Rupee by the day, rising yellow metal prices, volatile crude prices impacting fuel prices adversely, rising crimes against women, burglary, scams, murder, political unrest… these are the news that fill most of the pages in our newspapers. On the other hand, there are of course mentions of technology breakthroughs, sports, other achievements etc. too. What do we do after we read the paper? We put it away, cluck our tongues and ask “Where’s the country heading?” These topics come up again during coffee breaks and we once again give our opinions on what’s to be done, what’s not to be done and then cluck our tongues again and ask, “Why doesn’t anyone do anything about it?” Let me ask you here, why don’t YOU do anything about it?

Please note I did not say “we”. I ask what are YOU, as an individual, ought to do to help our country. Take a moment to think about the answer before you read on. I am no expert here, but there are a few things I would like to share with you on some of the topics mentioned at the outset.

Let us start with the current burning issue – Crimes against women! Be it outraging the modesty of women or the acid attack. These are the serious issues indicative of a retrograde cancerous society. How do you think these can be handled? Passing of legislation and stricter “Law” alone is not the only solution. This needs to be handled more from a grass root level. The least to mention is the value system. At one end we are proud of our Indian tradition, but when it comes to application of value system in a society everything vanishes. Our society is nothing but a set of hypocrites. Family is different whereas outside your home is different. We need to seriously evaluate the value system which is imbibed during the formative age. Starting right from the family, the schooling – all these matters for development of a healthy mind. Even trivial aspects we all need to pay certain attention – like one could start off by cleaning up your language, saying NO to obscene jokes, belittling the feminine gender and trash talk that demean women. Discourage any discussions that suggest that women are lower than men.

There is a lot you can do to improve our economy. Do not invest in yellow metal, do not buy or use imported products. You can instead use wholly Indian products. We do manufacture things that are nowhere lesser in quality than foreign goods. Pay taxes on time. Use car-pooling or public transport to reduce fuel consumption. This could a lot better to the nation avoiding the drain of dollar reserves to purchase the 90% of the crude oil requirement to meet the demands of the petroleum demands of the nation. If your work place is closer to where you live, use a bicycle to commute to work. You will be reducing greatly on gym and hospital charges as well. Reducing the consumption of fuels also helps one to avoid the damages to the environment and help reduce share of reducing greenhouse gasses.

You can eradicate poverty and malnutrition by doing your bit in contributing to the poor. Keep aside a very little portion of your earnings and help just one poor person get at least one nutritious meal a day. It will make a huge difference.

Corruption is dancing in every nook and corner. Stop corruption by cleaning yourself up first. Put your foot down and say NO to bribes. Let probity be an innate nature that pride a citizen.

When you go to the USA or Singapore or any other place, you marvel at the cleanliness and the spotless streets. You look around for a dustbin to throw your soda can or chocolate wrapper. Why don’t you do that here, in India? DO NOT blame the government for what you have done or could’ve done. Stop dumping garbage on the streets and stop others from doing it as well. Adopt a street and make sure that street is your responsibility. Keeping your neighbourhood clean will also put an end to the stray dog menace.

Do not flaunt your jewellery when you go for your morning walks, wear a scarf or clothes that hide your chains. Do not tempt the chain snatchers. Or else lead a life of simplicity where life is less complex.

These are just a few tips I wanted to share with you. Like I said, I am no expert. I leave it to your discretion on how you would do things differently and save yourself and the country. So what are you going to do now?