Friday, 3 March 2017

What's Wrong With Us?

No matter how optimistic I try to be, I wake up everyday to hear some horrendous news around the world. As if the entire fiasco in USA is not enough, closer home things aren't looking bright either.

Last week we went on our yearly pilgrimage to Goa, well the place really does bring lot of peace and happiness to us. And even though I love the place, I can't help but notice a kind of double standard experienced in many of the restaurants/hotels. Things are a lot more "nicer" if you are a "white". They are such subtle things that you may not even notice it if you are visiting the place first few times. For example waiter is more attentive or generous with smile or just the attitude they have towards you. And it is a no-brainer why it happens, most of them tip well. And by well, you have to remember that when you convert from dollars to rupees even peanuts becomes humongous!  Lot of people from western countries look down upon you, and you can't do much about it but it hurts to see that even in your own country you are given second preference!

And then there is other extreme, where Tamil Nadu decides to ban Coca Cola and Pepsi in order to promote local products. The excuse they are giving is that these brands are "toxic". Really? And how do these local brands plan to make soft drinks healthy? Are they suggesting that everything available in the market are healthy? What about cigarettes and alcohol? My intention is not to ban cigarettes as well but that at the end it is the decision taken by consumer what they want to do. I mean I personally don't drink soft drinks but that is my choice. Why do you have to ban other products to sell your product? That's just a cheap trick. And how is this different from situation in US where these pseudo-patriots want outsiders to leave their nation?

As a nation you should aspire to promote yourself ahead of outsiders, but that doesn't mean you  forcefully ban everyone else (at least not in a democratic nation). I think as an Indian we should first learn to respect ourselves. If we wouldn't respect ourselves and our fellow citizens, how do you expect outsiders to do the same? That said there is a huge scope of improvement in the way we execute our ideas. Instead of trying to bring down others, how about we try to promote our products in a better way. Like a majority of people think "Burgers" are cool but "Vada Pav" is strict no-no! Most of the times it's just the mindset. Another huge problem we face is the quality of our products. The notion is that Indian products are low in quality. Although it's a very generic statement but I am sure you are getting the crux of our problem. These are the issues which cannot be resolved overnight but the problems won't go away until we try to solve them from the root cause instead of just trying to enforce some stupid ban.

A nation cannot change until each individual decides to contribute in its course. You and me don't have the power to change law but then again we don't have to wait for some official imposition to make some change. Start with something small, next time you go to supermarket give a try to some local products. Only if you are completely satisfied by the result continue the product. And please don't assume someone is better off than you just because their english is better than yours!

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