There was an essay competition for ladies in the social service organisation, the Association of Inner Wheel Clubs in India at the district level. The theme was interesting and very close to my heart – my wish list for India. Oh my!! That got my creative juices flowing! I wrote what lay heavy on my mind and sent it in. I got first prize for my essay and it was published in the Inner Wheel District 320 souvenir.
Here is my essay…
75 years and counting! I’m so proud of all that India has achieved in the last 75 years. Hundreds of years of occupation were not kind to us. A rich and glorious past lay almost in ruins on that fateful day of August 15, 1947. Yet we had pride and hope that India will rise again.
Fast forward 75 years to 2022. Here we are twenty-two years into the 21st Century. We have reached the stars through our space program, raised poverty levels through our economic policies, and given a chance to everyone to get where they want through reservations in education.
This is a new India.
The latest and welcome achievement is that our GDP is the fifth highest in the world, leaving our colonial masters being us. I have so many more hopes and dreams for India.
My wish number one:
I wish for our bureaucracy to work for the people. That we follow our hearts and do what’s right always. That we live in harmony and care for each other as human beings. That religion is a private affair that we can keep in our homes. That we show sincerity in our labor. That every child is loved and every elder person is cared for. That every person has food in their belly and a blanket to cover themselves every night.
My wish number two:
I wish with all my heart that we all follow the rules. That we never try to take shortcuts. That we never think, “me first” but instead say, “after you”. That the laws and rules are made to be followed by everyone. I wish we have the patience to wait our turn, to not cut the line whether it’s for a bus or at the ration shop, or for a license. That we don’t litter and throw trash everywhere. That we care to clean up after ourselves when on holiday. That those who run our industries don’t pollute. That our farmers can sustain themselves.
My wish number three:
I wish that the infrastructure in our country is world-class. That we can get water, electricity, good roads, public transport, and other utilities without having to plan and hope for the best.
Basic amenities will allow inventors to invent, creators to create, and you and me to work hard for our nation to progress. That we are always at peace and never at war. That we can live with all the creatures of this earth.
This is my dream for my country. It’s not too much to wish for. We can do it together. We can work hard, rise above petty issues and choose to be free. And yet, this is also my dream for the world: to live in peace and harmony with our fellow humans. No nation is an island.
As John Lennon once sang in ‘Imagine’:
“You may say I’m just a dreamer.
But I’m not the only one…
I hope you will join us,
And the world will live as one.”