Troubling dualities in India’s development #think2013 #inclusion #urbanization
Nandan Nilekani comes to the crux of the issue- inclusion. Growth through inclusion is the term that he uses and Shoma loves. Isn’t that what this is all about? He goes on to detail this idea. Basic entitlements as made possible by the rights structure, physical infrastructure, access to services and schools, reduced friction for micro enterprise. He rejects the idea of big business but to create an architecture to create opportunities.
In my work in the urban development sector, especially in the areas of urban poverty and housing, I see the discourse sharply divided between the rights camp and the private capital camp. There are those who demand that the government invest, that inclusivity be built on an increase of basic entitlements. Obviously there are huge issues with this. On the other hand, others think private investment is the answer to all problems. But we have no workable ways to make that happen without abusing the system.
The other duality that we keep coming up with is this business about urban and rural. It isn’t either or as it us made out to be. Yogendra Yadav and Nilekani spar over this today at Thinkfest and I have seen this debate unfurl endlessly. We need changes at both ends, and everywhere in between!
As Jay Panda put it, it is a crisis of governance and of a breakdown of politics. Once again, it comes down to inspiring young people. Another way to engage the middle class is to focus on community based development, ensuring decentralisation happens. That’s the only way people can connect to the idea of India!
The above mentioned session took place on Friday 8 Nov at Tehelka Thinkfest at Goa