A breif description of Indian culture and history.
The Indian Life: Talking of India is talking of a society of 1 billion people. Indian life after 50 years of Independence has undergone many folds of change. This huge society can be roughly divided in 3 classes: the Rich class, the Poor class and most prominent, the Middle class.
About 35% of the Indian population is living below poverty line. The main problem Indian government faces during lifting up the standards of these people is the population. No legal restriction on family growth helps the alarming population growth. The growing expenses mostly hamper this lower class. In small villages investment for future benefits in terms of education is least important. Children have to follow their forefathers' business, which may be farming, cobbling, carpentry or running their own shop. General tendency of people is to earn daily bread. Not to think something big for the future but to just think of the ‘earning of the day’. This mars the self-development and even economic development. This happens in far reaching villages where basic requirements like regular electric power and water supply are still the main issues. But things are changing slowly and surely. Now, people in developing towns and cities understand the importance of education.
Middle class Indians mostly live in metropolitan and developing cities. In these cities, the scene is quite different. The best example is the industrial capital of India, Mumbai (previously Bombay). In this horde of people, every human being is on his toes and is just heading towards his work. Though people care about others, they have little time to pay attention to others. But one thing has benefited from this: the economic growth. India currently has world’s highest economic growth. The middle class has an average standard of living: dining out about once a month and going for a long vacation, mostly in India itself, every year or two. So with this the lifestyle, the economic condition of this class can be understood.
The rich class, of course, has a very good standard of living. Some of these people have the age-old prosperity, some have developed wealth by combining their fathers’ small business into a big one, and some people have reached this class by turning lemons into lemonade.
The whole scenario can be understood by the Human Development Index of India issued recently. This rates India 128th among the 174 countries worldwide.
A Day In India: In all metropolitan and developing Indian cities life is not as easy as one expects. But people here are happy about their way of living. Usually 8 of 10 men do service in government or private companies. The day starts with the haunted and unwanted alarm. Then the serviceman husband has to hurry to his office by a company bus, city bus, local train, rickshaw or by his own vehicle. If the wife is also employed, she too hurriedly makes arrangement of the children’s breakfast and lunch and rushes to her office. In Indian houses, usually you won’t find a maid or a cook working. The people can’t afford this leisure. Children go to school by school bus, city bus, rickshaw or by bicycle. If the wife is a housewife, she keeps herself busy in household work, entertains herself by television or perhaps joins a women's organization.
The working day is a busy day. All work and no play, except in the government offices, where the scene is exactly the opposite. The evening, after a long day’s work has to be rewarded with rest and pleasure. Families go in the garden, amusement parks and theatre. In India almost all companies have off once in a week on Thursday or Sunday.
Life, from rich and poor’s angle of view: The life is really tough for a poor Indian. Almost half of the population is in this category. People get low returns for their long hard work but they are ready to do it because there is hardly any other option available. People sometimes invest and set up a small business, but again the investment returns and profits from the business are doubted. A small business has to strive hard to survive within the ongoing privatization era. So if people don’t have basic capital they don’t risk lending from banks or private moneylenders. Beggars and homeless people are a common site along the roadside footpaths. The settlement of homeless in huts has helped the ‘Dharavi’ slum in Mumbai to grow to become the biggest in Asia. Looking at their daily life one utters, “life isn’t easy in this wicked world”.
The rich class, however, has a high standard of living. People mostly live in bungalows or flats. This cream of the society includes film stars, businessmen and recently exploded IT and software company owners. Life is a gift for these people. Most rich class people have sympathy towards the poor and 1 in 5 of them are associated with some volunteering organizations working for the good of the society.
One fact that is important to be highlighted is that the economic difference between the rich and poor class is increasing at a fast pace. So, the middle class has a decision to make whether to work hard, use their brains to cling to the higher class or to sink down the gulch.
Hardships Indians Suffer: Along with the time of independence, Indians have harsh life to live. There shouldn’t be any surprise that a developing country like India has 35% of its population below poverty line. A mere money factor makes these people helpless. Young fellows join factories and mills but the saturation of job market has increased the unemployment ratio. Some aspiring young fellows go abroad for the labour work in factories. Though they get good returns, a 3-year bond has to be signed. Dubai is most common among the countries. Some ladies join up the household work in Indian families living in foreign countries like Hong Kong, Russia and China.