India – the country where I was born, the country where I live and the country which has nurtured me. And you all would agree it’s the country which claims that it could stand against the meltdown like a strong iceberg; and while those top of that iceberg were enjoying the view, no body that around 300 million(Below Poverty line) cannot manage to obtain food. But, after all we’re the fourth largest economy- right after US, China and Japan. We can always celebrate overlooking the fact that our economy a mere 7% of the giant’s economy. It’s a country where people still fight for temples and mosques, on the basis of religion, caste and creed. It’s a country which is celebrating, the success of Common Wealth Games, the part of which was a great daylight robbery of 7000 crores of public money. But, after all Common Wealth games, we’re optimistic have been a success. It’s a country with a corruption index of 3.4 and let me point it out to you that here, lower corruption index refers to higher corruption! India is a country that tops the corruption list, that tops the list of unclean places, the population list, the education list and almost everything – I agree, very humbly. That’s the truth and I am no one to deny it.
But let me tell you my dear friends – I am a proud Indian. Yes, I am a proud Indian. And to validate my proud, let me tell you some beautiful facts. The corrupt India is the only society in the world which has never been known for slavery. The illiterate India gave the world the number system – yes, I am talking about Aryabhatta. And let me tell you – the world’s first university, Takshila was established in our uneducated, backward India. The directionless communal India, developed the art of navigation 6000 years ago and the very word, Navigation is derived from Sanskrit word ‘Nou’. Mathematics – the great grandfather nurtured in the cradle of this country – be it Bhaskarachya’s calculation of time taken by the earth to orbit the sun or the value of that small pi or algebra or trigonometry. Now let me tell you about the contribution of India to medical. Ayurveda-oh everyone knows belongs to India but let me tell you Sushruta, the father of surgery conducted complicated surgeries like cesareans, cataract, artificial limbs, fractures and even plastic and brain surgery- 2600 years ago! Yes, I am talking about the corrupt India, the unclean India and uneducated India.
Well those against being proud of India may smile at all this and with their hearts elated – they can say: Hey you let us remind you that’s history! India was the largest contributor to mathematics but now we’ve Princetons and Harvards- better than us! India did a great work in medical but now we’ve Texas. And they may very rightfully say that I am using past to validate the sense of worth in present. To them, my answer has two parts. One, what a nation is, where it stands now is largely determined by its past and when we talk about nations, it becomes absolutely imperative that we talk about the past. And the past of our India is fascinating and interesting as it is momentous. Well, I know most would be more than unconvinced with this reason of mine, largely conventional but the one I firmly stand with. So for unconvinced, I’ve another. India is the world’s largest democracy. Our powerless, weak India has the largest number of biomass gasifier systems in the world producing 656 mega watts (MW) of power. India was the first country to be accorded the status of a Pioneer Investor in 1987 and was allocated an exclusive area in the central Indian Ocean by the UN for exploration and utilization of resources. India signed a ground breaking civil nuclear deal with US in 2008 thus facilitating fuel supply for its nuclear reactors. The deal offers potential for a paradigm shift in India’s global role. The importance of the deal does not lie merely in the transfer of nuclear energy. Its importance is psychological. It opens the door to a new era of trust and cooperation between India and the US. India is the 3rd largest producer of solar photovoltaic cells in the world producing 2.12 MW of power. India is the world’s 4th largest wind power user. India has jumped five places to become the world’s 11th biggest exporter of commercial services in 2005, and inched one step ahead to the 29th rank among the largest merchandise exporters, according to the latest statistics by World Trade Organization. The Indian Software Industry has grown from a mere US $ 150 million in 1991-92 to a staggering US $ 5.7 billion in 1999-2000. No other Indian industry has performed so well against the global competition. IEEE has proved what has been a century old suspicion in the world scientific community that the pioneer of wireless communication was Prof. Jagdish Bose and not Marconi. India has the second largest pool of Scientists and Engineers in the World. Illiterate, uneducated India is the second largest English speaking nation in the world. India is the only country other than the USA and Japan, to have built a super computer indigenously. In2008, a world record was set when India’s Polar rocket successfully placed ten satellites, including the country’s remote sensing satellite, into orbit in a single mission. India born steel czar Lakshmi Mittal and Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani figure in the Forbes list of “World’s most powerful billionaires” who wield staggering authority and influence far beyond their riches. The TATA group, State Bank of India and Infosys Technologies are among 17 Indian firms that figure among the top 50 in the list of the world’s 200 most-reputed companies. World’s largest electronic ID program is underway in India. India is the largest producer of milk, cashew nuts, coconuts, tea, ginger, turmeric and black pepper, in the world. It also has the world’s largest cattle population (281 million). It is the second largest producer of wheat, rice, sugar, groundnut and inland fish. And talking about Harvards and Princetons: 38% of Doctors in America are Indians, 12% of Scientists in America are Indians, 36% of NASA employees are Indians, 34% of Microsoft employees are Indians, 28% of IBM employees are Indians, 17% of Intel employees are Indians and 13% of Xerox employees are Indians.
And if you could not digest all this, don’t worry, Indian pharmaceuticals will provide you enough pills as it’s the second largest pharmaceutical industry. I can tell you more but go home, and do it for yourself; yes you guessed it right – google it. Google sees more reasons than you do to be proud of India. And now let me come to the point, strongest in my view and may be one of most lame thing, as you may call it, to cover the negatives of India. The spirituality, the Vedas, Bhagwad Gita- the books, the words, the ideas that lay our foundation are undoubtedly ad undisputedly enlightening.
If all that leaves you unconvinced, I would accept the truth – the actual reason of my being proud of India is that I am an INDIAN. When I can be proud of myself, my accomplishments despite a hundred flaws, when I can be proud of my sibling, despite his many disqualities and when I can be proud of my parents’ kindness and goodness, though they may not be good and kind to everyone – why not should I be proud of my nation, my country – the country which has made me what I am, which has given me this right to speak!