Finally after a short drought, there is stuff where I fell like talking about.
Let’s start off with this – The Commonwealth Games this October.
There has been much written about how Delhi is prepping itself (or not) for the Games. This one article I found used the phrase “want people to go back with the impression that Delhi is a sophisticated city”. Anyone see the irony in this?
Delhi – the seat of culture once upon a time. Actually, the seat of culture a little more than a 100 years ago. The place where people flocked for culture, for literature and all that. Now, we have to not only educate the people about how to behave like civilized citizens, we are trying to con the rest of the world which has been watching the city since the venue was announced.
What were we thinking when we even made the bid for the venue? Forget the fact that we cannot afford to be splurging like this… did no one think of the little fact that the amount of money that needs to be spent on making the city, and the neighbouring areas presentable is a huge challenge that our corrupt bureaucrats might just not be upto?
One could argue that this is the chance for the city to get a facelift. Really? With the kind of corruption that occurs around here? They’d pocket the money allotted for the development and holiday in Switzerland during the Games when everything here is falling down on the atheletes heads.
Which brings me to the infrastructure and human rights article on BBC.
The article made me gape a little. It talked about how workers are made to work under “harsh and unsafe conditions without basic amenities from the employers concerned”. Why is this news now? Why is the fact that they are not being paid minimum wages, that deaths at sites aren’t even reported, the workers aren’t insured or trained making news?
Anyone who walked past a construction site in India knows the reality. Anyone who got anything built in India knows reality. Why do people think the Games would change anything? Would the contractors and everyone else involved suddenly develop something called a conscious or some hormone to start to produce sympathy?
The report apparently even talks about how people are not getting overtime pay, which is absolutely unheard of in a lot of companies in India, let alone unskilled labor.
This area is not regulated. And with the games, people just think it is a good way to make more money – which exactly is why we shouldn’t have stepped into this yet.
I am scared that India will end up with an egg on her face. There is too much apathy in this country… and there are basic problems we need to solve first – like electricity. How do we provide 24 hour power to these areas? Oh wait… the people in the neighbouring cities wouldn’t need it at that point.
Or clean water? Or that women will not be harassed. Or the people who come for the Games decide to make it a mini vacation and travel a bit and see all the debris we’ve shoved under the carpet. Yep. That’ll make a fantastic impression for sure.
Song of the day: Phir Bhi Dil Hai Hindustani (the ways we try to be charming. *sigh*)