Atanu Dey On India's Development

Ending Two Years

I love you too much
To ever start liking you
So don’t expect me
To be your friend.

Time flies like an arrow (but fruit flies like a banana.) Especially when you are having fun. I had great fun writing this blog since Sept 2003. Can’t say that I did not piss off a bunch of people. This blog has been the expression of a personal viewpoint. It could have been worse. It could have been an account of what I had for lunch or reporting on the details of the fad de jour or some such trivial pursuit. It was, instead, a contrarian viewpoint. I picked on holy cows such as Jawaharlal Nehru, Mahatma Gandhi, the incompetent Indian governments, Mother “the Merciless” Teresa, and others. Being an equal opportunity offender, I even dared to poke fun at Thomas “Flat-head” Friedman. Finger-pointing at idols is not taken very kindly by idol-worshippers.

I do not write about pretty things. And some of the ugliness I write about is connected with India, but not all. Me write pretty some day but not yet. The population problem received quite a bit of play on this blog. So also the problem of inadequate infrastructure.

My motivation for asking why is India poor is simple. I don’t want India to be poor. I love India too much to ever like what I see around me in India.

Only by seeking to comprehend why India is poor can we figure out how to not be poor. I admire those who have transformed their nations and societies profoundly instead of merely making pretty speeches. That is why I admire leaders like Lee Kuan Yew. I think democracy in India is a rather pathetic joke. That viewpoint is, as Dale Carnegie would have pointed out, doesn’t make friends and influence people who talk loudly about democracy without recognizing that it is an institution that does not exist in a vacuum.

I have suggested some solutions along the way. For instance, Rural Infrastructure and Services Commons. I hope some day it will be implemented. Recently I hear Vinod Khosla, my co-author in the RISC concept paper, spoke to the Planning Commission about RISC. Or my recommendations about how to make India literate in three years, or the integrated rail transportation system (IRTS), etc.

Well, that is all for now. I speak my mind and I am sure that my readers (all five of them) will not hesitate to speak their minds and tell me where I am right and more importantly where I am wrong.

Goodnight, goodbye and may your god go with you.

  • http://wadias.in/site/arzan/blog arZan

    Atanu

    Your blogging has been a highlight of my everyday blogging experience. I look forward to more from you in the years to come.

  • http://chennaikaran.blogspot.com plus ultra

    Atanu, happy anniversary .Please continue to post your serious stuff, leaving the reporting on “what I had for lunch or the details of the fad de jour or some such trivial pursuit” to lesser mortals like us.

    I like your blogs for the powerful ideas expressed in simple, fluent language. Let’s have many more of them.

  • http://www.goggly.blogspot.com/ milind pappu

    Hi Atanu
    I was surfing on different views on ‘ india’s population: boon or bane’ and landed on your site.
    I have never seen or read a critical yet lucid analysis on effects of over population. This review led to em your other comments.
    I have saved your site and would definitely drop in to read about you
    great knowing you
    regards
    goggly

  • Rahul Wagh

    Come come Atanu, going all ‘mushy’ on your blog’s anniversary!!! Can’t hide my chukle as I read the numerous posts jumping to your defence – you already ‘write pretty’ for quite a few. Just felt like lighting a candle – ha ha ha.

  • http://www.sandeepweb.com Sandeep

    Atanu,

    You’re rather doing a salutary service by presenting the contrary POV. In a nation inundated with the usual howls, blogs like yours are refreshing to read. I admit I also like it because it is close to some of my own biases. So there.

    Happy Anniversary!

  • Navin

    Second anniversary ? Cool. You should throw a party for this or take us for a drink ?

  • Sukumar

    Atanu,
    Congratulations on anniversary. Please continue to write articles in this blog. You introduce powerful ideas and describe them in a straightforward, but beautiful style. I have found them intersting. It has also helped me to expand my horizon. I know that you love India from the core of your heart. I admire that some of the ugliness you write about is connected with India. We need to expose the ugliness, hypocracy, injustice, corruption….There are a few who sometimes criticise you. But they have their own selfish agenda. They don’t understand how much you love India and how eagerly you want a change for the better. Just forgive those ignorant people. You are doing a great job. Eagerly waiting for your next article.
    Many thanks,
    Sukumar

  • http://http:onlyvoid.blogspot.com Shivani

    Congrats :) Do write on. Its an enriching experience to read your blog.

  • Anubhav

    You sure write nice stuff.. I did not realise that it has been 2 years reading your blogs. Please go on…
    Congrats.

  • http://ipatrix.com Patrix

    congrats on your anniv.You sounded as if you are going to quit…nearly scared me.

    my readers (all five of them) – LOL! more like 500 or maybe even more.

  • http://locana.blogspot.com/ Anand

    Happy anniversary. Look fwd to reading more posts here.

  • http://www.dkapoor.com/blog desh

    Atanu: You are doing a fine job!

    Icons that cannot survive a fall, are just idols with no life!

    btw, here is one of my favorite anecdotes from India’s history that involved Gandhi and Tilak..

    http://dkapoor.com/blog/index.php?title=revolutionaries_of_one_era_are_moderates&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

    So if you think you are a revolutionary.. wait till another dude comes along and renders you a moderate!

    cheers,
    desh
    http://www.dkapoor.com/blog

  • Vivek

    Atanu,

    Your blog is one of the finest things I’ve got to read this year.

    I read ur anniversary writing and followed some of the links. What you say about Gandhi applies to my view on you also. I may not completely agree with everything you write on this blog. But overall, I have respect for you and will continue visiting ur blog.

    Happy Anniversary and Keep up the good work!

  • Baljinder

    Dear Atanu

    Congratulations for completing two years of blogging. I am beginning to read your Blog regularly now. Certainly I like your writings and I am sure a lot of people also like them but they are plain lazy to tell you this.

    Rgds

    Baljinder… from beautiful Mauritius

  • http://indianwriting.blogspot.com uma

    happy anniversary, atanu. wishing you many more happy blogging years,

    bhalo theko,

    uma

  • Venkat Ramanan

    Atanu!
    Your blogs have always been very informative and you have constructively criticised many of the policies and projects of our government. A few that I liked a lot include “Why India cannot be an IT giant” and “Education in India”. Kepe writing sir!
    Great work there!! :)
    -Venkat

  • http://imaginathon.blogspot.com Suhail Kazi

    Quite late, but nevertheless..Happy Birthday! I kind of like some of your contrarian viewpoints and the clarity, lucidity with which you state them – even though, I admit, many times my own beliefs might not really match with yours. Looking forward to many more of your writings.