Wednesday, 29 February 2012



Some right thinking people feel that breakneck development in the name of liberalisation deepens social gaps. Express your views on the subject of development versus social disparities.

Globalisation/liberalisation has given an unprecedented push to development, as a result of which the tempo of life has acquired both success and stress, incentives and impatience, achievements and angst. Besides these candid contradictions, research and development the world over has opened new vistas of opportunities in service sectors, travel and tourism, infrastructure and industry. The spread of a culture of emergency and the accelerated pace of development has increased the volatility of economics which, in turn, has led to deepening social gaps, thereby increasing social tensions and instability. Nearer home, the rise of naxalism in different parts of the country is a strong pointer to the disparities that fast-paced development has brought in its trail.

For a developing country like India, it is not only the urban-rural divide and deepening social gaps that confront us, but we also have to cope with the sway of individualism over the binding force of a collectivist society. There is, and will be a decline in social values.

It is feared that the ever-widening gulf between the haves and have-nots, knowledge and ignorance is bound to increase if development without social equity is preferred and promoted. Inequality and the feeling of being left behind and outside can be a seed to social conflicts and confrontation between the privileged and the deprived. No doubt, without development the multi-faceted problems of poverty, ignorance, disease, deprivation etc. cannot be tackled. But it is equally true that the fruits of development should reach those who need them the most.

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