Friday, December 28, 2012

FOREIGN INDIAN versus RESIDENT INDIAN


FOREIGN INDIAN versus RESIDENT INDIAN

We still haven’t got over the colonial hangover of “Foreign Returned”.

And this fascination is now showered on “Foreign Indians” too.

That is why there is no point in being a “Resident Indian”.

It is better to be “Foreign Indian” like an NRI (Non Resident Indian) or a PIO (Person of Indian Origin) than a “Resident Indian”.

You will get more respect and privileges from everyone here, including the government, if you are a PIO or NRI than if you are a Resident Indian.

For example, have a look at the Republic Day Civilian Honours List for the past few years.

You will notice that there are a large number of PIO and NRI names who have been awarded by the Government.

Of these, there are many who work for Multi National Companies (MNC) and firms, financial institutions and investment banks, some are innovative entrepreneurs or distinguished academicians and some run successful businesses abroad.

But they all live and work abroad and many have foreign passports and have taken citizenships of that country.

Yet, they are mollycoddled and favoured by the Indian government, even though they are no longer Indian Citizens.

Yes, they may have been successful in their careers and they may have earned a lot of money for themselves and their organizations.

Whatever they have achieved they have achieved abroad for the benefit of the country they live in (or for the organization they work for) and, of course, they may have personally benefited too.

But one wonders what is their contribution to India.

They may have done something for the country they live in. 

But what have they done for India?

They surely may deserve an award from the country they live in or from organization they work for.

But why is India awarding them for doing something which is of no benefit to India.

It is Strange but True.

Whereas, on the one hand, we pamper “Foreign Indians” who have abandoned India to seek greener pastures abroad and realize the foreign dream; while on the other hand we neglect patriotic Indian Citizens who have chosen to stay back and contribute their bit for the benefit of the nation. 

Why do we display favouritism towards “Foreigner Indians” while treating “Indian Indians” with indifference?

Even in a family, a NRI or PIO “Foreign Indian” is admired while the “Indian Indian” is taken for granted.

You see so many parents talking in glowing terms of their children who are abroad whereas they don’t have even a word of praise for their kids who have stayed back in India.

I have seen a farcical situation where the mother’s favourite blue eyed boy was the younger son who had settled in America and she took for granted her elder son who had stayed back in India and who was looking after her in her old age.

If you want respect, status and good treatment in India, it is better to be a Non Resident Indian (NRI) or PIO rather than be a Resident Indian.

Maybe because in Indian Culture we say: Atithi Devo Bhavah (Sanskrit: अतिथि देवो भवः) which means “Guest is God”.

Now, like all foreigners, NRIs and PIOs are our “guests” in India and so as “guests” they must be treated better than the “host” Resident Indians.

Or maybe this Hindi saying is more relevant: Ghar Ki Murgi Daal Barabar ( घर की मुर्गी दाल बराबर )

Whatever the reason, the fact is that we do have a fascination for the “foreign” tag.  No wonder there is such a craze among the younger generation to go abroad.
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