India: what to do next?

A question from Yahoo! Answers:

What does India need today? In what way can we, make it better?

There are no doubts that life in India is very different from that in some other developed country. It is also without doubt that Indian economy is increasing and doing better than it ever has. Countries, the world over, recognise india as an emerging trend-setter and provider for services, especially human resources. A large percentage of population in its youth talk about vibrance and potential for growth. And yet, we’re not there yet.. So what are the things we encounter everyday in our lives that we hope to be better someday? What are some things that he hope wouldnt be there in India someday? And what are some things we hope would be there in India someday? What would add to our pride as an Indian?

You should start by realizing that whatever good things happen in India today, actually happen to a minority of its population. The majority of Indians still live in villages and make a living by subsistence farming. Right now, the proportion of rural to urban population in India is 70/30. If India is to become a successful industrial (and then post-industrial) nation, this ratio has to reverse in the next 30-50 years. The time to prepare the cities for it is now.

Same goes for basic education; India has gone to great lengths to ensure the availability of primary education (including girls’ involvement); now is the time to repeat this success with the secondary education.

Infrastructure is another spotty area; privatizing telecommunications worked very well for India, but now something has to be done about water, electricity, and transportation to support the growth of the Indian economy. Whether it is another privatization, some sort or public-private partnership, or greater public investment is entirely up to the people of India.

Healthcare… where do I even begin? At the beginning, I guess; you can’t aspire to become a developed nation and have less than half of all births attended to by a healthcare professional. Infant mortality rate of over 60 per 1,000 of live births is nothing to be proud of, either…

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