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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Metamorphosis( Part-3) - Times of Gen Y and Gen Z




It was the pre final year in college when the Men in White (Indian Navy) descended on the campus. A fire to do something different was stoked somewhere within! The interviews and Services Selection Board followed and I was among the first lucky ones placed in a job!

The opportunities for employment when we graduated were confined to a few private sector companies like Philips, IBM, Escorts, DCM etc and mostly PSUs/ Railways/Defense and Government jobs. A few bright ones joined management schools and some moved to greener pastures abroad as they earned scholarships.

I saw the shimmering lights of the ships anchored in Kochi (then Cochin) harbor as the train crossed the Thevra bridge, my first encounter with the sea! The destiny took me to don a white uniform and sail the blue seas. The transition was not easy as I did not know swimming and how I learnt to swim will require a separate post. The life took a complete U turn in terms of cultural shock, new way of life and physical rigor which I had not imagined. Every joint in the body ached at night for the first few days before waking at day break on the next day!

During 1970s and early 80s we witnessed the unfolding of bloody events related to creation of Khalistan (a secessionist movement). There were widespread killings and thousands of innocent lost lives, till flushing out of the terrorists from The Golden Temple in Jun 1984. Mrs Indira Gandhi was assassinated by her own Sikh guards in retaliation on 31 Oct 1984. There was widespread mayhem and killings in the aftermath in streets of Delhi. Her son Rajiv Gandhi, a reluctant politician, took over the reins. He ushered in major reforms, the most notable being heralding a ‘computer age’. He too died a violent death at the hands of a suicide bomber like his mother for the peace initiatives in Sri Lanka. There was a short lived honeymoon with Janta Party ruling the country. VP Singh the then PM, let the ‘Reservation Genie’ out by implementing the Mandal Commission report and ensuring the mediocre rule the roost for all time in future! The intentions were noble but implementation left a lot to desire.

 A brief rule of BJP in the post Babri Masjid demolition took the country back by a few decades. With squandering of opportunity the regional parties started playing a bigger role in future politics and subsequent coalition governments of the country. Horse trading and clinging to power at any cost became the accepted norm in the years that followed. The harsh economic realities came back to haunt PV Narshima Rao the then PM and became dominant factors to choose the path of reforms by doing away with the stranglehold of License Raj. Many MNCs set up shop in India in its wake. They saw an opportunity to address the market comprising of 350 million strong middle class, the biggest market after USA, in the world.

I too decided to switch my career and joined the bandwagon of telecom and software boom and traveled across the globe. The new opportunity gelled perfectly with my wanderlust. A bevy of sun tanned  beauties in Gold Coast (Australia), and Sardinia ( Italy) beaches,  exotic shows of Phuket Fantasy (Thailand), Moulin Rouge and Lido in Paris, Submarine ride in Eilat ( Israel), Snorkeling in Krabi( Thailand), Scuba diving in Seychelles, treks on Swiss Alps, Pyramids at Egypt, were a few rewards to travel. I realized how much there is to see and learn and one life time is not sufficient!

With rising number of opportunities and successive crowning of the fairer sex as Miss Universe (Sushmita Sen and Lara Dutta) and Miss World( Aishwarya Rai, Diana Hayden, Yukta Mookhey and Priyanka Chopra), a flood gate opened. Indian women now moved onto the centre stage. More women are now working as the economic independence has made them more empowered. The task of raising children in families is now being done both by husband and wife in the nuclear families. The husband has got more domesticated and assists the better halves in managing the kitchen and laundry. This is a feat in itself as never before the men, did such chores which were shunned before. The women on the other hand rub shoulders in offices, universities and in every known profession.

Liberal sexuality has increased the incidence of rape and sex related problems in a society where even a discussion on sex was taboo about two decades back. What was in the closets came out in the full view thus leaving many unable to cope. According to the latest finding in a report in Reader’s Digest ( March12) issue, Out of ten cities in the world that searched for word ’Sex’ on Google seven of them are in India ! The result is all too evident!

Increasing prosperity has brought in problems of increase in incidence of drunken driving, influx of cars on the roads, increasing pollution, environmental degradation and general social upheaval. Moral values have taken a serious knock and corruption has spread its tentacles in every conceivable domain.  India has now become multi faced with one end rubbing shoulders with best in the world and at the other end multitude of poor and illiterate, as in Africa! The economic prosperity has got limited in few hands. The greed and scams have now become so common that they have lost their news value. The life of an average man who wants to lead a decent life is challenged by the insatiable greed of few and reflects in poor quality of life of the masses. The rise of dowry related deaths and abortion of female foetus, and honor killings are still the bane of this nation even among the so called educated class.

 The biggest scourge of present times is terrorism which has created untold fear in the life of a common man. There have been multiple attacks in different cities and very little could be done to handle this modern day evil. Enormous effort is still ongoing to curb this menace for which a huge price is being paid by a common man!

It is laudable is that education is still the priority for most of the middle class. This is the single greatest equalizer. Most of the school and college mates who hailed from very ordinary backgrounds now drive flashy cars, live in penthouses or big flats, and enjoy their holidays in foreign destinations which were unthinkable by their parents who struggled hard to give them better education. The Gen Y and Gen Z are better connected and derive the benefits of the strides made in the technology and benefits of the ‘Internet ‘age.

We are now living in times where the human life span has increased with better doctors, medical facilities, and faster means of communication, more availability of food options despite population explosion, more means of entertainment, and more options for study. All we need to do is strike a right balance and curb the greed to see the benefits reaching the poorest man in India to make it a nation which can shine!

 PS: 1. Image kind courtesy Google
2. I thank all my readers for reading these posts patiently and to see the great changes we have witnessed in our life time. 

70 comments:

  1. Today, I am the first one to comment on all my favourite blogs. Thanks for sharing this post about yourself, Rahul. You have had quite an interesting life.

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    1. Rachna! Was very happy to read your comment!Life has certainly been interesting:)

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  2. You have travelled so much! I really envy you Rahulji.
    And this is an wonderful write up and an end to this series! It was a great read.

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    1. Jenny they say join the Navy and see the world but in my case just the reverse happened:)A sincere thanks for following my posts!

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  3. I still remember the assassination of indira gandhi, i was a kid but I really felt like something has been broken....

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    1. Am sure Francesca,that these murders in subcontinent smell the same as mafia killings in Italy once upon a time:)

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  4. I remember Indira Gandhi's assassination. Rajiv and Sam Petroda ushering our country to the telecom age. Narasimha Rao lifting op our economy. and the dirty Babri Masjid episode.

    You really are a world traveller. I envy you!

    The world says that we, Indians are brainy now because of our education, even though it is not too good. Thank god.

    Had a good time reading your series, Rahulji, thank you!

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    1. A huge thanks, Sandhya for avidly following the series and filling the gaps! God has been generous to allow me to see some of his creations across our borders too:)

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  5. You have written everything exactly like we all think, yet the reality is so different, there are still people who are unwilling to learn, and change for the better.All political parties are busy, planning and plotting, with nothing good coming out of anything. Would there ever be a light to guide us from this dark dark tunnel? I am not a quitter, yet things have become so, so very bad, that i am forced to think, good governance is still very, very far from our country.

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    1. I wrote as I felt and am so happy that you too feel the same way, Rama!Hope some wise senses prevail in our rulers to arrest the downward slide in values and sloppy administration!Thanks a lot for those comments!

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  6. Hi Rahul, you have highlighted this section of 'metamorphosis' so genuinely and with great insight. The political past of India sounds so much like ours here, a very passionate country indeed. I wish freedom came without violence though. You are so spot on about the decline in morality and upsurge of corruption, it just seems to become worse as time goes by. The last two paragraphs capture exactly how the world spins today, thanks for putting all this into words.

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    1. A big thanks to you, Sam as you have related the things in international context and it gives a feel about what bothers everyone! Corruption and lack of morality afflict more when there are huge economic disparities and one can do little to find easy solutions to improve things:(

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  7. A very well written analysis, all the posts were like moving through a written documentary and I could visualize them all. Wow! You have seen the beauty of so many parts of the world, how very lucky! :) Loved the entire series, got a sneak peek into a world I could not see, thank you :)

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    1. Arti,coming from you I can just bow my head to thank you!I am still to do a lot of work to come on par with those real visual posts and pictures of yours. I am just fortunate to have seen a bit of the lovely world:)

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  8. A very well analysed and thought over post...I loved and enjoyed reading all the parts. It was gr8 to know abt the times when I wasn't even born.

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    1. Ria, I am very happy that I could manage to hold your interest , more so when most of the things happened before you were born:)Thanks a lot for that kind comment!

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  9. finished the 2nd and 3rd both parts.. I really enjoyed the lovely narrative flow u maintained... and the lil lil moments which together makes some immortal memoirs..

    u r a great person and it was fun as well as knowledgeable to read the anecdotes of your life !!

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    1. Jyoti, believe me that you write so well and your each poetry is an indication of the volcano of talent you have! I thank you in all humility for having read these posts in one go:)Thanks a lot for those adorable words!

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  10. We have indeed seen the rise of equality and better times for many... but there are still far too many living in fear, poverty or inequality.

    Lovely post.

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    1. So true, LadyFi! A big thanks for that comment!

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  11. These 3 posts was like a movie. Very nicely written. Its nice to see kids no longer struggling for government jobs and with incomes at disposal life quality has become better. You have sees the then-generation and now. Good one

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    1. Thank you, Insignia for that kind comment!I truly appreciate the positives which have happened in last few years which has made a world of difference for betterment of our lives:)

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  12. Very well written Rahul...thoroughly enjoyed! Thanks!

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    1. Welcome to my blog Amit! A sincere thanks for following the blog and also helping me in striking a century in terms of number of followers now!I am happy you liked this one!

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  13. Very educational post for me. I enjoyed finding out about these issues.
    Wagging Tales

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    1. Welcome to my blog Charmaine! A huge thanks to you for following my blog and making me cross the hump of 100 followers( you are 101!)I am so fortunate to have a reader like you, who is a writer with books published to her credit. It gave me immense pleasure that you found this post informative:)

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  14. It is always good to know more about you .I enjoyed all 3 post ;).

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  15. A big thanks, Izdiher for having taken time off to read all the posts:)

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  16. nicely written. I remember the Mandal Commission time, during my college days we lived through bomb blasts and riots in Mumbai, absolutely horrifying. Yes, education is still important for us. Politicians are worse off. And, technology made great strides. Communication opened new channels like blogging, forums, social networking!

    http://rachnaparmar.com

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    1. Thank you , Rachna! Every one has felt the pain of some of these tragic events and some are living the misery of having seen loose their dear ones in these events!Communications has been the single major change driver:)

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  17. Interesting. Very well written. Truly, times are changing. I think that in order not to be swallowed by the times, one should have a strong moral values foundation and a well educated conscience to discern what is right and not simply go with the flow.

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    1. What you say is so true, Divina!Taking right decisions helps a long way:)

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  18. People change as the world around changes and they grow up! So, we all! Thanks for sharing these episodes.

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    1. Thanks Kusum! Yes, people change with times some time for better and other times for worse:)

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  19. I missed your blog posts because I'm having exams. :)
    Read all three posts and I must say i thoroughly enjoyed it.Especially college part!For some odd reason this college part catch my interest..may be because I'm pursuing my studies through distance learning and coaching ain't as interesting as college life is.sigh :)

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    1. So sweet, Sunakshi that you took time off from your exams to read these posts:) Am truly honored!I am happy that you enjoyed the post of times in college as it was easy to relate to!

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  20. I think this post summarized my growing years. World has changed so fast so soon it seems. It actually sounded like the summary of last two decades. But, Sir do a series of posts on the places you have traveled, just a paragraph is not enough.

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    1. Saru, honestly I edited the post to put that paragraph on travel as it was not there before! I will certainly write more about places I saw and episodes around the places I went, if that would interest you:)A huge thanks once again for reading all the series and liking it!

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  21. You write very good, Rahul, and I enjoyed reading this.

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  22. A big thanks Eden for those words:)

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  23. You kept my eyes glued to my monitor! Frankly I am feeling very overwhelmed and hopeless when I look around and try to do my bit to see if something substantial can be changed for the better.

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    1. Such a nice complement, Padmaja! A huge thanks:)

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  24. so many events of great importance - both national and personal - very nicely brought together in one piece Sir. incredible!
    couldn't help but wonder what a wonderful journey life has been for you. touch-wood!

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    1. Sujatha, your comments are always awaited as they are so nice! The journey of life has been a non stop roller coaster ride and great fun:)

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  25. It was a Wonderful Read sir. Over all. I thoroughly enjoyed reading all the 3 parts. It was like reading the entire History of how India has come a long way from its Independence, in a very engaging manner. These are things which we think we know, but we don't , unless we hear it from people like you. Change is constant, and always evolving, and It is nice to read about how our Country moved ahead. Thank you for this series Sir :-). It was an absolute delight to read :-)

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  26. Ashwin, readers like you inspire me to write:)A huge thanks for reading the series and finding it informative and posting those lovely remarks!

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  27. Hi Rahul,

    It's amazing how you have captured the details and events of the entire period of transition of India. Very well written. We all relate to your posts.

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    1. Welcome to my blog Ekta!I am happy that you found the post interesting and look forward to seeing you again here:)A sincere thanks for liking!

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  28. Absolutely remarkable! Thanks for sharing your knowledge and experience along with the truth of present! However we ahead compulsorily need to look back to check often are we heading at right path and every one deserve their opportunity as we're. Beautiful post sir!

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    1. Thanks a lot Jeevan!Happy that you liked:)

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  29. I greatly enjoyed reading your series here, Rahul-ji. The world keeps changing around us, probably faster now than ever before. Sometimes I wonder what the drive and concerns will be for coming generations. Some are quite evident - environment, illnesses (mental, physical), fast pace, etc. There will always be room for future improvements :) Thanks so much for sharing these!

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    1. I am honored that you took time to read the entire series!Your words are absolutely true that there will be more improvements as we go along:)

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  30. Aren't we thankful for web 2.0! We now have history in another form. These posts have quite a lot for the coming generations to learn from. There's nothing quite like little history lessons laced with personal notes. I'd like to hear of your adventures while in the Navy. :)

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  31. Agree with you that history interlaced with anecdotes could make it interesting:) Thanks indeed for liking and I will write about some adventures while in the Navy, in coming posts!

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  32. YEs we have seen all these changes and all .. but only one question at what cost ?

    hope we know that toooo

    Bikram's

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    1. Thanks a lot Bikram for taking time off to read these posts:) The price is paid for all deeds in parallel. There are no free lunches in life! Our quality of life is a reflection of the seeds we have sown!

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  33. Oh My God it was like watching a movie I started from the first one and just kept reading. Wonderful Rahul Sir all these are just stories for our generation now. Though we have changed immensely from then I just hope our generation and the generation hence forth will atleast carry the great indian values.

    Aha very nice you have written thanks tons, loved these 3 posts

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    1. Welcome to my blog Ramya and I am honored with those lovely remarks and was touched that you found the posts interesting to read in one go:)A huge thanks and hope to see you here more often!

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  34. Fortunately or unfortunately, our generation was blessed with IT jobs. I don't know when this generation is going to pay for its low-quality low-caliber but high-paying profession thrust on it. Maybe they are, already?

    Destination Infinity

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    1. Welcome to my blog! Very true, and to sustain the edge in IT we must ensure to produce quality as otherwise soon countries like Vietnam, Thailand etc will overtake us!

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  35. Good to come back and read this. Rahul, I can identify with all the events you listed. I remember when the Babri Masjid riots broke out, I was at a client's office and curious what the noise was about, outside, we went to look. The office was close to a bus depot and imagine our horror when we saw a bus ablaze! The only thing on my mind at that moment was to get back home so that my Mom would not worry.

    Amazing how the times change. Great read!

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  36. I wish I could subscribe via email to your blog. :-)

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    1. A huge thanks Vidya! I will try to add you in the email subscription so that you can read the posts if you like:)

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  37. Wow! "A Brief History of India" by Rahul Bhatia. You've tabulated all those events well and it makes for very interesting reading.

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  38. Thanks a lot, KayEm for pronouncing me a historian:) Ha Ha ... that was great!

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  39. what an amazing transition we have had!! Great read!!

    The last para was an amazing read!! We have had a great improvement, hope poverty and terrorism goes to NIL stage asap.

    That day will be our real Independence !!

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  40. A huge thanks, Ramya for having liked

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  41. Wow...really awesome. I like it. Thank you for sharing.


    ERP gujarat

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