“Papa, I want to buy a guitar”, said 7 years old kid Raj to his father who is a small tea seller, after watching a movie in which protagonist was a rock star. “No beta, you don’t need it” told father to the son. “No, I want it! I don’t know anything else” screamed the child and started crying. “Okay, I’ll buy it for you in a week or two” said father to his son, hugged him and left for work. The father felt the passion of learning guitar in his child but how would he buy the guitar as it would cost high for a person like him who is financially broken. As he was going to his tea-stall, he found a wallet full of cash nearby a shop. How would he respond now? He can fulfil his child’s dream by this money but what about all the moral values which are letting him to stop. He was in dilemma and couldn’t understand what to do. For him, both “financial crisis” and “moral crisis” were at his doorstep.
Like the tea seller, on a larger scale, we in India are facing moral as well as economic crisis. Some people would agree, some won’t. It’s all about how we view our surrounding and what we want to do about it.
We Indians are not new to economic crisis. We faced it in 1991 and opened our economy to the world. The LPG reforms did well for some time and inflation and unemployment was controlled. But after that the Global Financial Crisis of 2008 and recently the slowdown of China have put a lot of pressure on our Indian economy. Rising of our fiscal deficit and high negative balance of payment is slowing down the economy as well. Everything was so well for India some time ago as different reports agreed to the fact that within some time the growth of Indian economy will touch the double digit mark. But now, new reports are not so good for India, but at the same the time not as bad as they are for rest of the world. We still are the fastest growing economy.
How are we then in economic crisis if we are fastest growing economy? It seems like we are doing all well. We are still growing with more than 7% growth rate where all the other major economies have growth rate of only 3-4%. The problem we are facing is rising inflation and decreasing employment. Even after the oil cost have fell below 50$ per barrel, we still are not able to increase our growth as we have to recover from the blow which the high oil cost had previously on us for more than 5 years.
But economic crisis is not the only headache. There is moral crisis too which we can see in India. Economic and moral crisis, sometimes, looks like different sides of a pole. When economic crisis comes, it might lead to moral crisis too. The reverse might not be true most of the times. We can so much easily view the loss of morality in our culture. We see politicians indulged in corruption, we see different movie stars who are role model of youngsters held in different charges. Where do this low morality leads us to? We have forgot our human values which figures like Gandhiji and Mother Teresa told us. Our ethics have become weak as we just tend to think about the poor if we get emotional for them, but never act when we can do something. We just prefer monetary gains over moral values. We just want to earn, not to learn. A country’s true worth lies in how it treats its women who is the root of life, and without root we can’t grow. How well we treat women? How much have we done for our fellow women? Well, we all know that. Hiding it and not accepting this fact just shows how weak we are. It just shows we do not want to change. Government policies can give opportunities to the women but it can’t percolate the feeling to respect women in people’s mind. That can only come from our moral values. It’s true that money does not grows on tree, so doesn’t values.
Now, as we can view both the crisis, how can we solve them is the biggest question. We can’t solve any problem by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them. We have to dig deep for that. Economically, we are still growing good. We just need investments in our economy for initiatives like “Make in India” and “Smart
City” to be successful. We’re putting our best efforts to do that. PM’s different foreign visits to attract investors and recently India’s effort at Davos, Switzerland in World Economic Forum have shown that. Also, “Start Up India, Stand Up India” will give boost to economy and will lead to growth if successfully utilized. Apart from this, we don’t have to let go our moral values also. Children will only learn how to treat their parents when they will see how their parents are treating their own parents. Respecting women, letting go communalism and caste politics will not only help us in becoming morally strong, but it will also have a good effect on our economy. Reaching somewhere high only requires hard efforts with morality. We can see that from Prime Ministers like Manmohan Singh and Narendra Modi. Many people might not like them, but both are held in high esteem for their personal honesty.
“I want to buy a guitar”, these words were still in the mind of Raj’s father. He was both in “financial crisis” and “moral crisis” now at the same time. I do not know what he did in the end. I do not know what others might do in the end. But I know what should have been done by Raj’s father. We all know what should have been done. Because in the end, darkest places in hell is reserved for those who maintain silence and neglect their responsibilities in the time of crisis