The Common Wealth Effects - 2010


By

S. Aswin Balaji
Management Student
NSB, NIILM School of Business
New Delhi
 


Introduction:

I was lead to an ecstatic state of mind after Indian sports men lead their nation to NO.2 in medals tally of common wealth games. Firstly even after the officials of common wealth committee have expressed their high dissatisfaction and unhappiness over the progress of India before the games started, India managed to get everything ready in a grand manner before the games started.

If a citizen of India digs in the economic background currently he/she would feel that it is highly unfair to hold common wealth. By this the Indian Government reflects the jealousy that it has over China and its urge to match up China with inadequate resources. India misplaced the sense of pride and inevitably ended up in distortion of national priorities. If not on development of a chronically poor nation, the money could have been well spent on bringing basic sports to every remote areas of the nation.

The Commonwealth Games 2010 was a grand success in nation's front. It is not fair if one expects that India would have got good returns on the amount of resources and time that India has invested in the Games. The Commonwealth Games held the promise of great economic returns before it started. But I could not figure out if the returns are achieved. We have to wait and see. As of now, politicians are playing games with the erupted act of corruption. The situation now seems to be different. Inflation is in early double digits, at times gets back to single digit. Considerations are many. But something else is happening in political front.

TODAY's INDIA:

India is a developing country. Focus on the word "developing" as India is not yet developed. Ironically, India is a country which is, on one hand struggling with the problem of poverty since the time of independence while on the other hand has spent millions on the Commonwealth Games!

Forty percent of India's population is below the poverty line which clearly indicates that the booming Indian economy is still unable to feed a majority of its citizens. So the word booming is absolutely wrong in this context.

Climatic changes due to global warming are causing an agricultural crisis all over the country. These worst conditions are leading to inflation in the economy, energy resources are getting depleted, unskilled and poor people are forced to get involved in work with least possible wages and let us not forget the skilled and literate unemployed…but who really cares? India was too busy with Commonwealth Games.  

India's goal should have been the development of human resources, dealing with poverty and creating a healthy, wealthy and literate India. I believe that as a result of the approaching Commonwealth Games, India, especially Delhi has undergone a complete makeover where the infrastructure is concerned. Lavish five-star hotels, better flyovers, etc, are now constructed. Better buses can be seen running on the roads of Delhi. Why all this? Just to show that India is on its way to become a developed nation soon? But can it hide those shabby and disgusting slums behind certain unglamorous locations. Can it hide the cries of those million hungry stomachs living below the poverty line? Unfortunately not is what my perception is! Can anyone explain how the modern infrastructure helps those million unemployed men who have to support half a dozen of their family members without any source of income? Indian dreams can be the focus of public attention. But one truth is that India doesn't have enough time to negotiate with Naxal cousins and neighboring Pakistan. But that can't be an excuse nevertheless.

I won't deny the fact that may be these games will have an international impact and benefit a particular section of the society temporarily. But this is where the most important question arises that if the games will benefit a certain sections of the society which is already rich and powerful then what happens to those sections of the Indian population which is below the poverty line? Who bears the responsibility of their welfare? I also agree that the Commonwealth Games will usher in a certain amount of employment but will it offer employment to millions of unemployed? And by the way this is only for a temporary period of time. Then what? Again back to the past? Uncertainty becomes a foreword for Indian government's answer to its people. So, a country like India wearing poverty as its major costume which appears to be a national shame should not have afforded to conduct such games at the cost of its hungry citizens. Therefore India should have first won the race against poverty and then thought of going global through such ventures. Hence India's poverty and the hosting of Commonwealth Games are not at all compatible with each other. As a nation, the welfare of its citizens is its first priority and not the conduction of sports and leisure. Why is the media silent? Too much of money must have gone around including the media. Perhaps, dogs will start barking in due course.
 

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Source: E-mail November 18, 2010

 

           

 

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