Thursday, September 4, 2014

Pseudo Environmentalists of India and Nature Lovers of Genting Highlands!

During my short trip to Malaysia last week, I had the opportunity to visit the Genting Highlands (also known as the Resorts World Genting) of that country. While having a glimpse of the highland development that they have  meticulously planned and implemented and have been planning for implementation, thoughts about the eco-controversy that has plagued the development prospects of the western ghats of my home state, Kerala, and the type of dirty politics that my country men (and of course, women!) play in the name of environment, came in to my mind.

How beautifully the Malaysian authorities and the Malay people have showcased their development and their nation to the rest of the world to see! They have done huge constructions in their highlands and in their country sides. They have touched up their natural resources, not to make it ugly, but to make it more beautiful and useful for them! They did it without any hue and cry. They did it with utmost care and plans! Their authorities had allowed their engineers to plan it well using their engineering expertise without interfering politically in the brains of their engineers! Where they had to take external technical help, they did that too! They did not pretend that they know all!

Their government had allowed private entrepreneurs to invest and reap the returns on their investments! When the private business men began to make constructions in their high lands for their 6000-roomed 7-star hotels, amusement parks, sky ways, roads, etc, none of their environmentalists made an issue out of it. Fortunately, they have only real eco-scientists and environmentalists who know what is what and not any pseudo-environmentalists and their ignorant media followers!

Malaysia is an Asian nation and it is not one of the so-called western imperials. It is also a Muslim nation with Hindus, Christians and Buddhists as their minorities. They have all sorts of ethnic groups such as Chinese, Indians, Indonesians and others. They have different languages.  Yet, with all these diversity, they could achieve much with regard to the human development index  about which I wrote yesterday. 

What is wrong with we Indians? Why can't we match the majority nations in the world in overall development when we have more natural resources than many others? 

If Malaysians can construct huge constructions on their highlands like Genting and the Thai people can make huge constructions on their beaches, why the so-called Indian intellectuals try hard to stall all initiatives of development in our beaches and hill regions? When the unstable Himalayan mountains of Shimla can have mushrooming constructions, why the stable western ghats of Kerala cannot have it? Is all these based on real environmental knowledge or political games based on pseudo environmentalism*? If one knows the Indian mind well, the latter could be well judged as true!

Let me present some snaps of Malaysia for your judgement: 


The Malaysian Roads beautified by flowering plants on the sides

Multi-lane Road from Kuala Lumpur to Genting with Palm Plantations on either side


The Batu Cave Lime Stone Hill and the Murugan Statue on the Way to Genting

Steep steps leading to the Batu Caves

Lime Stone Hill of Batu Caves and the Tourist Facilities


Genting Sky way (Cable Car) Entrance

3.3 KM Long Genting Skyway Cable Car Cabin Boarding Area

View from Genting Skyway Cabin at Starting Point

Genting Skyway Cable Posts and Cabins on 25th August 2014

Genting Hotel Lobby

Genting Hotel Elevators

Genting Hotel Amusement Area

Model of Genting Highland Constructions and Buildings

Genting Highland Buildings Construction Scaled Model-Another  View

A Fruiting Bonsai Orange Tree in Front of a Kuala Lumpur Chocolate Shop

Now what is the problem with India and with the Indians? 

I too being an Indian, this is my take on this. Most of us prefer to go with our hearts and not with our brains. We are still a developing society with the majority of people in varying levels of knowledge and capability. The people with real broadminded brains are a minority and they are the least heard.

India is no more the country that was during the pre-independence days. During those days, the literacy rate was extremely low and the people looked towards their elite educated leaders for guidance. But now, things have changed. A good majority of Indians have gained college and university educations and are either graduates, post graduates or professionally qualified. 

But do they have the competency , expertise and experience to do various kinds of technical, professional and managerial jobs skillfully? Yes, some of them have. But all of them definitely not. How to get such a heterogeneous mix of people to synchronize and get their tasks completed efficiently? How to ensure the freshers to gain proper experience and expertise in their respective fields of work in a systematic manner? And this aspect is human resource development and it is the field where the vision and efficiency of leadership become vital. Regrettably, this is the area where India keep failing!

Indians are good generalists, but they are not good specialists. Unfortunately, every Indian wants to become a generalist clerk or administrator or manager but not a skilled specialist engineer or technician. The least qualified among them would like to become the political boss and take all decisions for the country whether they have the competence for that or not!

Indian universities and technical institutes churn out thousands of graduates, post graduates and doctoral fellows with basic knowledge in various disciplines. But when these people have to further their skills and experience, the practical work fields give little importance to their college or university specialization. In the job market, all engineers are treated more or less equally. It does not make much difference whether they learnt civil, electrical, electronics, mechanical or chemical engineering! Even for the medical post graduates having specialized training, the situation is not much different! 

So, if the fresher is fortunate, he or she gets some job. An electrical engineer may work in mechanical field or a civil engineer may work in chemical field! All types of engineers may work as software code writers or analysts! They may get advanced post graduate studies in management principles and may get employed as marketing executives! 

So Indian government and Indian companies keep getting their advanced types of equipment, technology, systems and infrastructure mostly devised and designed by people who work in foreign lands where practicing novel ideas keep getting encouragements. Indians only take proven technologies! They do not waste their time in proving or experimenting! Why should they do it when there are others to do it for them?

So, all modern technologies come to India now. But pitifully, they do not know how to keep those maintained well. Skills are pitifully lacking and skill development is not a big priority. 

Indians consider conventional engineering a low key affair. Any tom-dick-and-harry of India know how to make a road. There is not much engineering or technology involved in it, according to them. If the roads they make gets damaged in a weeks time, it is the Indian conditions of weather! Or the contractor has cheated!

No Indian engineer is a professional in the real sense. They even do not have any professional bodies which promote professionalism in them. Not even one percent of the Indian engineers are members of any professional body that stands for the enhancement of professional expertise and knowledge in their respective field of specialization!

Indian technology and engineering suppliers are happy to get associated with foreign collaborators for each and every thing. They are highly satisfied by playing the second fiddle to the foreign suppliers! None of them ever consider it as a wise decision to develop their own team of Indian engineers! 

So, do not ask why India has thousands of engineering colleges now which churn out fresh engineering graduates in millions! Also, better not to ask what happens to these fresh engineers later! Is software the only field of work for Indian engineering graduates?

When all these happen this way, how to distinguish between people who have the desirable qualities from those who do not have it? 

Rise India, rise!

Think India, think!

*Pseudo-environmentalists = activists who are essentially ignorant about the various technologies and engineering involved in progress and development, but are great intellectual posers who talk much about the protection of hills, highlands, flora and fona, water, waste water, pollution, ozone depletion, global warming, carbon foot print, etc and try to keep their views above all others. They are the ones who argue against development of the tribal and the rural folks and keep attending global conferences in five star hotels! They make their hue and cries in high pitch till they get personal benefits from their targets. 

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