Watching the recent spat being covered by news channels and newspapers between the Ambani brothers – Anil Ambani & Mukesh Ambani, a thought crossed my mind on the vast amount of money owed by the two brothers (comprising a universe by themselves) and the other side of comprising of villages and towns crying out loud for investments for bare necessities like electricity and clean drinking water!
All the one needs to get a feeling of this divide is to look around the places where they stay and this would become evident in the shanty hutments dotting the perimeters of their posh suburbs. If that evades sight, then a drive to a nearby tier II or III city or town for a day would bring out this glaring gap easily. Most of the towns barring the capital and metros face some sort of power shortage which intensifies as the place becomes more and more ensconced in the map of India! To add to this, water supply is erratic and there is a high dependency on rain gods.
That is the primary reason why the meteorological department’s forecast preceding the rains becomes a phenomenon that captures the attention of the entire nation! Far from proper utilization of rainwater through rainwater harvesting plants in the cities, it is still about stop-gap arcane arrangements followed by municipal bodies to fill up lakes to cater to the requirements of cities.
Poor roads and appalling infrastructure make it difficult for farmers to reach their produce to the markets on time thereby causing losses and adding to debt worries which plagues them like an apparition. Even though attempts are being made by the Government in the form of disbursal of loans to farmers, the enormity of contribution required seems to dwarf the initiatives which are progressing at a snail’s pace!
Well, the maladies are endless and word insufficient but then the divide is so glaring, it makes it clear that Pareto’s 80:20 principle for sure holds good in this scenario too. With so much wealth, a small portion spent by those like Ambanis, Bachchans, and super-rich towards the amelioration of the ‘other’ India under the judicious eye of a body which oversees implementation would help in bridging this gap.
It would take an effort of the magnitude of the Bhoodan movement of Acharya Vinobha Bhave to bridge this gap barring which it would increase with the rich getting richer and poorer getting poorer! Maybe such a move sounds unrealistic but then only an effort of this kind would bring about balance in the imbalance that has been set for decades together.
Images from Times and Hindu