(taken down directly from a note on a loose sheet written late one november night)
Being an intellectual (alleged!) comes with its own share of feelings of guilt. We all are the not-so-privileged lot born in a land where the greatest and the most powerful men chose lives of austerity and ascetism. As a thriving success story of capitalism tries to create a sanguine attitute about the overall rise in physical living standards, a deep rooted something makes many of us doubtful. Roarkes and John Galts of early youth coax us to feel proud at eating the fruits of our own virtues; Valmis, Vyasas and Buddas of our childhood keep gnawing at our heart. They keep talking something about growing out of our needs! If there has been a real battleground between the coflicting ideologies of Capitalism and Socialism, it's the mind of an Indian!
Prof. ... delivered a talk on 'Sustainable Rural Development' in Astra on November 8. The candid and sincere oratory of the Prof. flared up smouldering embers of disquiet. 'What's meant by development?' 'What do you mean by fair competition?' 'Are things really so fair as we pretend they are?' The talk raised myriad philosophical, political, sociological and economic questions. In the course, the projects undertaken by Astra found a mention. More than their magnitude or economic impact, it was the noble intention, and indegenous attempts to solve practical problems that stood out as the main feature of all those projects.
The essential message was that sustainable development can never be achieved by following a fundamentally narrow minded and short sighted model of economic deve,opment. The deceit of fairness that we so hard to maintain will sooner of later break in front of the great economic divide. The real development of people will happen by fulfilling their actual needs, not by braiwashing them into defining their needs as per what's profitable to people who are already in an advantageous condition.