Yesterday it stared me in the face again. The vast divides in our society, chasms which one cannot cross easily. However much one may try to fill those gaps the bitter truth is that there will be always be the haves and the have nots. An ideal world cannot ever exist, it is foolish to even dream of such. Perhaps the very reason for the human endeavor is the imbalance around but then we also talk about the harmony of nature and how much we can learn just by observing it. We observe, we don't learn. Continue in our own disparate ways, each with his personal goal and agenda of life.
Yesterday I was at a radio station and met a larger than life personality, who is the epitome of humility. But this is not what I wanted to say. The radio station radio station was was collecting notebooks for distributing to children who cannot keep up their education because they can't afford to buy books. Mission Shiksha....... I too donated my drop in the ocean worth of books.
I have always been concerned about the education levels in our country, they have undoubtedly risen considerably in the last few decades but what one sees around is the alarming number of those who do not have the means and at times the inclination to continue with their studies. (There are many success stories about people coming out tops despite the odds which continue to inspire).The dropout level in government run schools is high, many children do not go beyond the 4th or 5TH class, some manage to stay on until a they complete the eighth or ninth year of school. These schools,funded by the government, for educating the economically weaker sections of society are more than less a laughing matter, there are so many instances of teachers not coming to school at all but getting their salary at the end of the month, some which I have witnessed personally,others which are reported in the newspapers.And this is just the tip of the iceberg, there are many other irregularities which result in the high dropout rate. And if teachers behave in that way the example they set for the students is disastrous.
We HAVE TO HAVE dedicated individuals, perhaps foolish idealists, to change the existing situation. Why do we not question ourselves when we see children begging on the streets, why do we shrug it off as an the effect of Karma, or whatever excuse we have for our good fortune. Have we become so self centred that we cannot see outside the well of our own little lives. We give towards charities but are we genuinely concerned or is it just for placating our egos and dealing with the guilt of poverty around us.
We talk about a strong vibrant India, a nation on the go, where the young population outnumbers the greys. Accepted. The work force which is on the move and the youth who are with it and all there. Are we only looking at cities, what of rural India are they there if so where? Are they not left behind in the scheme of things? How many ideal villages do we have like the one painstakingly built over the years by Anna Hazare?
To come back to the main point only and only when we have 100 % literacy that we can hope for the next level, an educated and enlightened India.
We hear that the world is looking at us, are we looking at ourselves or are we looking at ourselves with of our perceived view of the world's view.
I think I am ending a bit abruptly here. I don't know why despite all this I am so proud of this ,my land. My one fervent wish is that it wakes up and becomes the country which Tagore dreamed of .................
PS There is some error in the format of the text hence the different sized fonts,please excuse. I have to go back to school.