Monday, January 28, 2013

I Love My India

Vasu Reddy From Chicago

Although ten thousand miles away from my home, and for about one and half generations being away from my home, and having lost my grandparents and father and a brother over the years, and being entwined in the American way of life, I still love my India.  No amount of time and distance will make me change my mind on my love for my mother nation.

I believe like every other Indian, I too wanted to go back to India and do things that were helpful and good for the country, but primarily I wanted to go back to my roots and belong in the place that was my birthplace.  I really tried at least three times to do work or business and live in India for extended periods of time.  I even ventured in purchasing homes in tow different cities over the years.  I started 2 licensed businesses that were spanning over probably ten years and had employed lots of friends and family and also lots of people I did not know when I got started.

I did not succeed either with business or personal investments.  I lost on all counts except the spirit of being an Indian.  One week or so ago, I was speaking to an Indian friend and really recounted the love for the country but my inability to succeed with investments into India both personally and professionally.  I hold no ill feelings about the failures on both accounts as I did realize that the long distance management is like long distance love with India, it will certainly lead to failure on multiple accounts; management will never work if you are not in India, people really are not professionals but personal acquaintances who forget what t hey are supposed to do when you are not there, the way of life is different in context to work and life, they can only do what they know and one should not expect an American audience in India, sales and marketing is very different in India, acceptance of long distance management is difficult, and so many more management lessons I learned which really made me reflect to my friend that I will no longer invest or work in India as it was impossible personally to succeed and I was also at a stage in my life where risk taking is not advisable.  Despite all my personal failures of management in India, I still love India and everything Indian.

My family and friends love everything Indian.  We still account for Indian food as our favorite, and probably enjoy it much more so than we were in India.  Personally my day without a good dose of vegetarian Indian food is unfulfilling.  We speak in Telugu at home and with each other, and me in Hindi or anything Indian with most my friends if they don’t know Telugu.  We account for Indian holidays with great fervor and enjoy the occasions with sweets and clothes.  Everything Indian; people, products, food, clothes, mannerisms, way of life everything is our routine and we all love our India.

I read about what is happening in India everyday; be it a Times of India, Andhra Vilas, Hindu, Sakshi or any other publication that is available along with all the USA based news papers that are available.  Here is where the India I love is totally different than that of my old India.  Every day, everywhere, every piece of news is only of the scams, murder, rape, cheating, political bickering, religious strife and just bad mouthing.  Nothing you hear or read is of anything to with the development of the country, love for the people and brotherhood.
Despite all the bickering and bloodbaths, and rape and murder, it is still my India.  My people may not be touched by the incidents that are reported, but they are affected both in India and those who live outside.  Why so much strife and ugliness in the land of Gandhi and Ram?  Why there is no respect for each other or one another’s way of life and religion?  Who gains from the mayhem and blood baths and bickering?  The country in spite of these still is evolving and growing and developing.  Just imagine what it could do if all these negative thoughts, incidents and happenings are converted into positive energy and for the good of the nation and love and respect each other.  It will truly be my India, depicted in Vande Mataram.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Presidential Agenda

Vasu Reddy From Chicago

On January 21, 2013, president Obama got sworn-in for the second time as the president of the USA.  The pomp and ceremony associated with the swearing ceremony, and the events leading up to the swearing-in of the president is quite a well planned and well scripted event management.  The television and internet and the electronic media cover the events 24/7 by the second so nothing can be missed by the common person.

Just about every event that the president and the family and the followers participate gets well documents and publicized.  Presidential advisors, handlers and supporters go out of their way to help, contribute and participate in the pageantry of the election and the presidential aura.  In the modern times the election of the president of the United States and the swearing in the president and the annual state of the union address of the president; all have great relevance to the citizens of the United States.

Following each of the president’s agenda and actions has a lot of significance to the electorate and politicians as the state of the union, and electoral promises are reviewed and dissected, and typically followed by the public and the media to see if he delivers on the electoral promises and the state of the union.  Typically president’s push their agenda thru the congress to deliver to the promises made to the electorate.  It is impossible to deliver to every promise made on an election trial, but delivering to the electoral base is a normal and standard practice with the national agenda.

When a president has congress that is of an opposition party, presidential agenda does get challenged, not simply because the congress wants to oppose it but simply because the parties differ on public agenda.  The value of a two party system is to allow for checks and balances with the national interests rather than a single person’s interest.  The population of the country does have different needs, opinions and aspirations and the elected leaders have to try and handle the needs of the diverse requirements; while being strapped with sinking budgets and ever expanding deficits.  Not many presidents except President Clinton have enjoyed budget surpluses; even his time only experienced marginal surpluses and did not eliminate the overall deficits all together.

The current and reelected president’s agenda is more social than philosophical in my opinion.  The imbalances of the deficits and cost of the debt weighs heavily on the planning, along with social issues, unemployment and never-ending international strife.  Although the president looks smiling and composed, his head must be spinning with the issues that are on the table while he gets sworn in for the second time.  The US Presidency is no doubt the most powerful position in the world, but also comes with enormous pressure for handling the global and internal tensions.  For the current president, the pressure of past performance is no longer there as he is reelected and done running for office; he only has to perform to his future legacy.

The current president has already set several firsts in his election and reelection to the office.  He has the opportunity to make a difference in handling the economic crisis as deftly as he has handled the electorate.  The most difficult decisions of saving and managing money, while keeping peace within the congress and the monetary system will be of the greatest legacy that president Obama will leave for future generations.
Granted that international crisis across the world and pressures on resources verses available assets all weigh heavily on what to do next for next four years.  The president can be bold in advocating better management of resources and saving for the future, managing the budgets to tailor to what is available to spend, cut the deficit completely while sacrificing the pork barrel projects; do things that are essential to save the American dream for generations to come.  The president is still relatively young with two very young children, and he should aspire to have an American life that his children are looking forward to living.  The promise of America is what the president should have on his agenda; that he can deliver to his own children and to the rest of the nation as well.  God bless America, and all the best to the President.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Not In Control

Vasu Reddy From Chicago

The last couple of weeks of 2012 and the first couple of weeks of 2013 have been quite eventful.  I took a break to writing weekly during the holidays and the few weeks have yielded an Indian government that is incompetent both internally and also dealing with external forces.  While people in and outside of India were following the story of Nirbhaya “Jyothi Singh Pandey” for weeks, the killing of the Indian soldiers on the Pakistan border, and beheading them seem to be equally newsworthy, because of the way they were killed and the denial of the Pakistanis about it having happened.  One of the Pakistani minister’s comments that there are a billion opinions from a billion Indians was in fact fascinating, as there were a billion Indians in disbelief that people will be so inhuman.

The government in both instances has been quiet in reacting and taking steps to address the issues that have heightened the anxiety of the entire nation.

First; the act of violence against a woman in New Delhi streets conducted without any regard to the life of the person, and done with such impunity by the guys who drive a bus or whatever is very disturbing.  It is the capital city of the nation, and these youngsters were simply going home from a movie when they mistook the bus for a normal ride.  What transpired has witnesses; one of the young lady who got killed by the brutality of the attackers and her friend who somehow survived the dastardly incident to recount the actions of the fellow Indians who were really not human beings.  Such brutality was on action against the young lady and her friend, and she stayed alive to let people know of how brutally she was attached by the group of inhuman beings, and her friend survived to also recount the incidents of the night.  Now she is dead unable to sustain the brutality of these inhuman beings and before death she has fully documented who they were and what they did to her.  This is also corroborated by her friend who survived the attack.  What the nation has shown is the deep empathy for Jyothi and her brave efforts to fight the brutal attack, and even after the attack her desire to live and bring the attackers to justice.  While the entire country mourns her death, the nation was shocked and drawn to her being subjected to such brutality and her brave life after the attack.  Every man and woman and child of India was offended by the actions of the gang that attacked her and what has the government done so far?

Secondly; the killing and beheading of our soldiers on the Pakistan border is equally brutal and has drawn the nation’s attention to the brutality of the actions of the Pakistanis.  The whole nation just shocked by the brutal attack on Nirbhaya, was once again shocked at the atrocity of the actions of the Pakistanis.  The continued denial of the Pakistanis of these beheadings ever happening further runs into the wounds of the country’s population.  Whatever is happening at the line of control was supposed to be mutual and with respect to each country’s boundaries and people.  Everyone in the world knows that there is continued tension and the infiltration into India is a daily occurrence.  There is so much anguish within the people of the country to see such barbaric behavior at the LOC; it further fuels the disbelief that such cruelty can be possible by human beings.  One again every Indians sensibility was challenged by the cruel actions of the Pakistanis, and what does the Indian government do?

Both with the country and on its boarders the citizens are being subjected to is brutality, and with unimaginable savagery.  These incidents touch the hearts of all of the civilization and not just Indians.  It is time for the government of India to wake-up and at least have the courage of a woman who did not have any weapons except the courage to fight the idiots who raped and killed her.  She fought bravely as long as she could and although succumbed to the brutality at least had the courage and bravery to fight the idiots.  Perhaps the government of India should learn from her to start fighting for protection of its people.

Pulse of the People Vasu Reddy From Chicago In the last couple of weeks I did predict that Modi will come back to be the prime ministe...