Wednesday, January 6, 2016

I don’t want a Digital India

Everyone wants to make India go digital. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mark Zuckerberg (Free basics), Mukesh Ambani (Reliance Jio) and a host of other business people.  No one wants to work towards providing clean drinking water, continuous electricity of food to the unprivileged. The more infrastructurally developed we are becoming, the more emotionless we are.  Why are we as a society moving towards making ourselves so dependent on technology. Start-up India, stand-up India coined by our Prime Minister Narendra Modi is more towards online platform.  Nothing towards an offline platform.  Smart cities is another example of wrong priorities.  Why focus on 100 cities when the remaining 90 percent of agrarian population is entirely dependent on nature.  Entire focus in on the few privileged people. 

Ram Charan asked corporations to tap the fortune at the bottom of the pyramid but why will they do leg work when all they can do is set up an online facility and take support of government subsidies and encouragement.  India wants to be a super power and it is presumed that one of the pre-requisites to be considered one; is to have a bullet train.  There are positives in having the bullet train but only for the people of the two cities.  And if I talk of parameters generally considered relevant i.e. GDP, how much is saving 2 hours of commuting time convert to increase in GDP. This is a very simplistic argument I understand.  But then, does the argument have to be complex to consider it valid.  We want to compete with Singapore and Beijing and other developed cities. The question is why. Why not compete with ourselves. The kind of population we have, we need to convert our weakness of agriculture to our strength.  Just because China exported its way through cheap goods, doesn’t mean we follow it.  And we will never be able to do that because China will better you in anything you offer. India has its compulsions of democracy which China doesn’t have.

By blindly aping the western countries on mobile technology, we are missing out on our fertile land. India is blessed with abundant water resources in some states whereas others are affected by drought. Will an online revolution help us get over the lack of coherence in water distribution. I guess the answer is in negative. Then it is about time we focus on ground realities that be mesmerized by the virtual world. 


  1. Wow..I do agree to the reality you mentioned. Farmers chose death in absence of INR 12K and then govt announces lakhs of rupees. Farmers gets lakhs for death but zero to live.

  2. Good Thoughts. Wish our Decision makers visualize our (India’s) core competency. Indeed Agriculture is backbone of India and it should be. Investments should be made to modernize agriculture. I think we have to go back to 1960’s Slogan of “jai jawan jai kisan”

  3. Hey keep posting such good and meaningful articles.