Posts Tagged ‘Europe’

Been finding it interesting (more so intriguing) to note that after encountering efficient, non corrupt processes in countries like UK, the solutions for India from Indians here are still mostly on lines of:
‘shoot the leaders’,
‘Congress corrupt, BJP will bring ram rajya’,
‘Anna Hazare is the saviour’,
‘we need a dictatorship’ (which both the above options might easily deliver), my etc.

No one, not even the most intelligent, insightful IIM educated folk I’ve met / read, suggest what I find to be the obvious: ‘strong, independent government institutions’.

So, either I’m highly mistaken and misguided in my understanding, or most people I follow are getting something wrong.

If you think I’m wrong, would really like to hear your point of view, and feel free to skip everything below this. Just jump to comments.

The strength of western democracies isn’t derived from non-corrupt leaders (they are corrupt here too, just not in such an open manner), or from being led by a god anointed party or leader (highly religious states in eu do tilt towards higher corruption), or from a great leader who has lead them into a shining future.

The strength of western democracy is (IMHO) derived from its strong institutions – institutions which deliver what they are responsible for irrespective of government of the day, mood of the populace and mood of the boss. More importantly, institutions which, while consistently delivering their responsibilities, rarely over reach.

About time that we stopped thinking in terms of individuals and personalities, and started thinking in terms of institutions, organisations, structures and processes. Yes, it’s boring, it doesn’t let you (or anyone) be a hero. But, it delivers. Time, after time.


Cycle chic?

Came across this interesting info on a article (do read the original here for more interesting facts):

Researchers found that the average journey covered 2.49km and took 14.7 mins, giving an average speed 10 km/h, in line with the average speed of a car in European cities. Average speed rose to 15 km/h, however, during rush hour, making Vélo’v a much quicker way of getting around, even before taking account of the difficulties of finding a place to park a car.

I wonder if the city administrators in India will ever accept these stats and re-orient their infra-focus to include, if not prioritize, cycles.
I wonder if our citizens will ever ask for a clean, cheap, healthy & ‘faster’ alternative over polluting, expensive, lazy fuel-driven and ‘slower’ vehicles.
I wonder if cycling in India will ever again become an accepted part of urban transport mix rather than either a health/endurance fix or a poor man’s vehicle.

How I’d love to see a thriving cycling culture in India. We had one for over half a century, why we can’t have it again?