What would be India’s worst or biggest problems?

I think I am too small, completely lack the macro picture and therefore not qualified to answer this question. However here is an attempt –

1. Water Pollution: the way we pollute our river bodies, and the shrinking river bodies is terrible. We have closed down our ponds, lakes, and polluted our rivers. All this will take its toll – Ganga, Jamuna, Damodar – all rivers are terribly polluted and we are not doing enough to stop / change it.

2. Air pollution: To even think that it is LUCKNOW which is the WORST in terms of pollution is shameful. Mumbai, Kolkatta, Delhi, Surat – all are bad. My only hope is NaMo doing something – seriously. Hope he cleans up Sabarmati, Vapi, etc. are on the top of recall for him once he becomes PM

3. Health issues related to life-style: When you are a parent, you are shocked to see 22 year old kids saying ‘I have a Blood Pressure problem’ – stunning, but true. When you eat tons of packaged food, have big mugs of coffee, have 2 litre Cola bottles during the day, sleep during the sun times and be awake during the night, you pay a price. And that price is poor health. Parents can only see all this and get frustrated, but will be able to do nothing.

4. The vanishing Indian investor! On the financial front we are destroying the small, fledgling share market that we have. The blame is to be distributed all over the world – the small investor who buys indiscriminately, the non existence of Corporate Governance, the regulator increasing the cost of operations for the smaller players, – the list is endless and damn scary.

4. For the Sandwich generation, the other end of the spectrum is being able to / not being able to look after their long living parents. Some people of that generation are well provided for, but many are not well provided for.

5. Corruption: So well entrenched that being nice, honest, etc. are ceasing to be options.

….maybe there are more?

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  1. I think another major problem to add to the list is huge Disparity/Inequality in both economic and social terms.

    This includes the Maoist ideology as well.
    I think the struggle between those who have too much and those who are not provided for, will get bloodier and murkier in the times to come.

    The gap is widening and the tempers are short.
    Its a pan India problem and its growing fast.

  2. In my opinion the influence required to get the work done in various offices is the root cause for all the problems you listed.

    In any office we should have a known face. Other wise run from pillar to post. This discrimination should be avoided.

    Even in shops the MRP printed on materials is only a eye wash. If you know the shop keeper personally he will reduce the rate much below the MRP. This kind of attitude destroys the system. The common man in India is badly disturbed.

    Even for a small work done in state government offices even for their colleagues, It is a tough job to get the work done. My wife was refused of salary during her maternity leave in a state government office. This badly disturbs the savings pattern and brings uncertainty. Of course I can fight back but even to get salary in government office we need influence.

    Cry my dear India, Cry.

  3. People not getting educated or not willing to get educated also adds to one of the biggest problems. At a basic level, they miss out common sense and at times miss out their complete sense. Each one of us are going through lot of such ppl and their senseless activities. Spitting on road, littering, not pertaining any road drive sense, blindly entering a road of an on-going traffic and blaming the person who drives through, creating multiple queues for a single entry and that too unorganized, pushing garbage to the next door, foot boarding on buses and trains and the list goes on and on.

  4. Indian’s Biggest Problem is choosing good leaders so i agree on your last line, First get up and VOTE.

  5. So a problem called as the ‘tragedy of commons’.air and water are owned by nobody and therefore no one entity has the incentive to maintain it without having property rights over it.of course the moment someone suggests property rights as a solution,the dormant leftist in all of us wakes up..how dare you speak about assigning property rights to rivers.
    We’ll,elinor ostrom 2009 economics prize winner showed in her research how even illiterate shepherds in Nepal can come to a property rights based arrangement without govt help,if given a chance or by benign neglect by the govt.

    Voting and elections are no solution.as has been shown many times,voting in large elections is a commons tragedy too.benefits can go to a vocal minority and harm can be spread out across everyone else,giving not much incentive for the silent public.ofcourse voting works when your vote carries numerical weight.like in your housing society.but while choosing between Priya dutt or poonam Mahajan,it doesn’t matter one bit

  6. Root of all problem is excess human population as compared to dwindling natural resources. At some point, human population will cross the threshold of sustainable number. When that happens, we will see greater conflicts for securing the available resources. These conflicts will happen under various garbs: economic inequality, cultural differences, north-south divide, old world-new world clash, religious fanaticism, oil wars, water wars, and so on. But the root of it all will be simply the same, larger human population trying to sustain on relatively smaller resource base.

    I fully expect huge tragedies and heavy toll on human life in the years ahead coming about simply due to the end of our current unsustainable load on this finite earth.
    (With this info above, doesn’t steady, continuous growth in any economy sound ridiculous? A continuous growth using finite resources? Hilarious!) The collapse may happen in our time/our kids time/or our grand kids time. But it must happen as surely as night follows day.

  7. I very much second LuckyOye.Freedom and peace comes with space.
    Root cause of all evils is uncontrollable increase in population. Every religion/caste want their people to generate more childrem to get more supporters.
    Ultimately it will be the survival of fittest.

  8. Lucky oye, I usually find your comments insightful.but here you are totally off track.available natural resources are Increasing every year despite human population growth.this is because of the most important resource called human ingenuity.natural resources are practicaly infinite.the only thing finite is our ability to harness them.human ingenuity has brought new resources to us.electromagnetic spectrum and petrol were not even known to humanity just over 120 years.and you somehow extrapolate that these are the only things human beings can discover? Infact the rate of tech growth is growing exponentially.in a decades time today’s tech will most likely be ancient history.infact,we haven’t seen nothing yet!
    This Malthusian argument has been propagated by doomsayers since the beginning of agriculture.human beings just seem to overcome them every time.this time is no different.

    Also,re human population growth.it has already leveled off in India where fertility is 2.1 ,barely above replacement rate.developed countries have less than replacement rate.muslim countries like Iran have to pay people to have kids.the poorest nations have a 80 percent reduction in fertility rates.none of it due to govt force,but by the simple act of reducing poverty.richer people simply have lesser children.this trend will continue and human population will never cross 10 billion given current trends

  9. @Pravin, if what you’re saying is true, then none of the advanced/growing economies are planning for it. For example, countries around the world have pension/retirement systems that predicate on ever larger number of people entering the workforce than those leaving it. Even the most advanced economy deficit spends, which is nothing but “kicking the can” down the road, for later generations to pay back. When the payback is to be done by a reducing population, how is it supposed to work? If every democratically elected government makes even more un-fulfillable promises, welfare schemes, handouts and the productive population simply cannot take the load, even the much favored democratic way of government may be endangered.

    India’s population may also be leveling off, but we are nowhere *near* educating them for an advanced/post-industrial society. We may be more than 3-4 generations away, and within that timeframe, if population drops, we may never reach there! A large, uneducated, unskilled population is not an asset or a “demographic dividend”, but a “demographic nightmare”.
    Petroleum reserves are not unlimited, and if we continue to burn it beyond the replacement rate, at some point they WILL run out. To think otherwise is simply a fantasy. And we’re actually burning petroleum at an exponential rate! In my humble opinion, this Natural Gas fad will quickly fade as we burn thru it faster than crude oil and everyone will be left red faced (all those who invested/built infrastructure around Nat Gas, that is).

    Even solar power, at current technology levels (my disclaimer), is non-sustainable simply because we have to mine/refine a lot of rare-earths to make the necessary hardware that can harness solar energy. And those are again very limited (RARE earths0 and non-renewable.

    So all-in-all, my opinion stands, that energy usage beyond what we can replenish and lifestyles around it are non-sustainable. The closest sustainable lifestyle for humans is the medieval ages, with maybe a select group of humans (the elite) living an advanced lifestyle in a totalitarian form of government (ala Hunger Games). Yeah, I know it sounds depressing, but unless we can harness the next almost infinite source of energy (another disclaimer) this is “As Good As It Gets” for most of us.

  10. LuckyOye,
    I agree that social welfare nets promised on the ponzi scheme of future workers entering the workforce will die a natural death.The hard logic of arithmetic will ensure that. In the US,there is already means testing for social security.so those govt run ponzi schemes will die and create some unrest among old people for sure.but those are problems created by the govt.
    my disagreement is over the ‘end of oil/gas’ scare.well,today oil and gas is still pretty cheaper than a cup of coffee at starbucks or even a bottle of evian in some countries. this is inspite the upward of 40% taxes on the product.
    for some miraculous reason,known reserves keep going up as technology improves .the prices are not telling us that this is going to get over anytime soon.even if it were,we really not predict if it will be relevant to us anymore. i am an optimist,but a rational one:-)

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