Monday, March 24, 2014

The Ahmedabad Pattern

I read this phrase few months back in a local newspaper. Some ministers claimed to develop Jaipur on the patterns of Ahmedabad. Development of Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS), Metro and other improvements to public transport were included.

Things have worsened since then, except for the Metro!

That news let me to think of why Ahmedabad was chosen as a model city. The city does not boast of a World-class public transport system or traffic management or any such facility that the public could feel proud using. Yes, one notable mention could be how the Sabarmati River and the water front that has been developed.

To make the public feel some relief from the scorching heat of summers and may also help in water supply, irrigation and developing certain places of interest.

Now, with elections looming, I think is the best time to discuss this. It is common to see public icons getting engaged in mudslinging, trying to point out each other’s grey areas. Making new promises every day about launching new schemes and policies – food guarantee, employment guarantee, eradication of corruption – without even thinking if those will ever be started or implemented.

Is this what we want? Food Guarantee? Poor quality homes to live in? In a place where doing business is still not easy, many, if not most, of the employed people are unskilled, the main source of irrigation is Monsoon Rains, do we not need something else?

Can the government rather not create an environment to foster basic necessities – clean toilets, basic education for all and the likes? I know there are schemes for such developments, but upto what extent have they been implemented? What is the ground reality?

No one is actually focusing on the development of the country, its security. How to keep the country, its citizens and its territory safe from few of our not-so-nice neighbors and some groups living in the country yet working against it? How to ensure safety of women and children? (Now please don’t catch the words, please read between the lines).

The focus is on the winning candidate – the one who could get a +1 count added to their or their allies’ number of seats and together they all could gobble up everything. Our leaders have a very big appetite – in tunes of thousands of billions of rupees – a million is very small that is like talking on a district level.

What do you think should the winning candidate or the ruling party or alliance act like? Or what is required to win any election, particularly when you or your party is contesting for the next consecutive time?

It is a give and take relationship. You give us –

  • Congestion-free, smooth and well lit roads to drive on
  • Clean water to drink and non-polluted air to breathe
  • 24 * 7 electricity
  • Better education – not the one that makes students mug up everything
  • A sense of safety and security
  • Corruption free environment (I know this is difficult)
  • Equal growth opportunities for everyone – not reserved on the basis of caste or religion
  • Faster and honest justice
  • Quicker and hassle free redressal of our issues and grievances, esp. in government departments
  • Good quality infrastructure, esp. high speed internet
  • Water storage bodies and sewage treatment plants
  • Inflation in control

...and get elected in return! In short at least take care of basic necessities (not just food, clothing and shelter). We don’t want spoon feeding or hand holding. The government should give us a basic foundation which is strong upon which we will build a strong and developed India – the one which we have never ever dreamt of.

I know there are other issues too, but these can be the starting steps for a long journey. Once these have been taken care of, I am sure proper development will set in and then we would be able to say that India is shining, really shining!


Whether you elect the Lotus or the Palm or any other party – just elect the candidate who is committed towards actual development. Caste or religion should not be a criteria!


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