(An article published in Jagruk Bharat in 2016)
Mr Joseph E Stiglitz, Professor of Economics at Columbia University had received Nobel Prize in 2001. He was in Bengaluru recently to give a lecture on GLOBAL INEQUALITY — CAUSES AND CONSEQUENCES.
However instead of confining himself to the subject of World Economy, he took on the White man’s burden of pontificating to us Indians on the subject of Governance. He started harping on India’s global image and shed copious amount of tear because as per him India’s image has taken a beating globally as a result of our Government Policy to crack down on NGOs and students of JNU. As per him India should be aware that it has an image problem abroad.
It should be a matter of concern that NGOs are subjected to a condition that makes it difficult for them to operate. This has got a lot of attention abroad. There are very few govts that have made it difficult for NGOs to operate. Also very few Countries mainly authoritarian ones have engaged in harassment of students in the universities. These two events have had a strong effect on public image abroad.
He was so concerned that these incidents have put India in the club of countries such as Egypt, Russia and Turkey. He was also extremely self assured that most people in India will not want to be in this group. Then very cleverly he remarked that that these events have also had an effect on foreign investors. With India growing in global economy, this was not how it should be portray ing itself.As usual a few in our national media simply went Ga Ga over the Pontifications.
Well Mr Stiglitz, we Indians respect your views on Economy but will request you to confine your self to Economics only. Please do not try to teach us or advise us on governance. Well in case you are so inclined you can advise your own President on millions of things which have been going wrong in your own country and then you have over 50 Governors to give your piece of mind. However please spare us Indians and especially our Prime Minister. Also the present Govt of India has been elected by a majority of Indians and is not a Govt of some individuals.
As regarding the NGOs all such agencies whether run by individuals, Corporates or governments, have to follow the law of this land. In case they do not follow our laws or show any kind of reluctance then they will be booted out, no one should have any doubts in this regard. In case such actions of ours is going to affect foreign investments, then let it be so. We do not want any such investments from any such countries. Please also allow me to correct your ignorance regarding likes and dislikes of majority of us Indians. Except those individuals or groups who were using such who were using such mischievous/ non abiding NGOs for funding anti national activities, funding actions to under mine our social norms, political norms, preaching conversion of faith or for free lunching, all other Indians who constitute the vast majority have welcomed this action of Govt of India. Even the UN has been told about our stand on this matter in no uncertain terms.
Now we come to the JNU. In this connection Mr Stiglitz you should try and recollect all the actions the US Federal and State Govts taken in various Universities during the Vietnam Era protests. At that time the americans students were certainly not being anti national but just protesting against a War foisted on them by short sighted people then managing the Govt of USA.
Where as at JNU things were very very different, yet the Indian Govt handled the situation in a most admirable manner. The message given is very clear…all have to abide by the Indian Constitution….this is simply not negotiable.
Lastly Russia, Egypt and Turkey are countries which are our friends and Indians have no qualms in case any one considers us so. Mr Stiglitz you may please broad cast to all the countries in the world or to those whom you represent that India will not hesitate to act in its National Interest……in case we are not made a member of NSG then we may simply have to turn to coal to meet our energy needs and then GOING GREEN and CARBON MANAGEMENT all will have to be dumped.
In case our security needs ever require then we will not hesitate in going for a Nuclear test too and the day we finally lose our cool against sponsored terrorism then all those supporting it will start counting the heavy price they are made to pay for it.