There have been large protests in parts of India this week following a decision by the national government to create a new state, splitting AndhraPradesh in two. There were protests for the split and a high-profile fast beforehand, and now, in the wake of the decision, protests against dividing the state. There are also renewed calls from other regions that want their own states as well. Jim wrote about it this week and you can follow-up in the NYT if you want to read more.
My interest in mentioning the protests is this: Why can’t the good people of India rally in similar civil disobedience and start demanding basic public services that would immediately improve the quality of their lives – like clean water, electricity, safe school buildings, equality in education, sidewalks, garbage pickup and safe trash disposal? Live electric wires, sink holes, uncovered water mains are common hazards and people die regularly because of them. I witness small acts of road rage daily – revealing the heightened anger the comes from constant exposure to unbearable traffic, regularly broken traffic lights and gridlocked intersections. Migrant workers live on the edges of the economy in cloth tents, makeshift homes and temporary settlements that are awash in filth and rubble and that line the city’s streets, exposed to all and seen by few.
Why doesn’t anyone complain? I mean, really complain – use their numbers and storm city hall? Where is the fervor to gather en mass and force leaders to address the government’s egregious failure to serve the people?
Just had to get that out… I was fuming about this while making breakfast today. (Hubba, it’s a good thing that you left early to work on your book or you would have had to bear the brunt of my spew!)
Happy Saturday all…