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After 67 years of Republic, what India has achieved and yet to achieve-Enumerate

As India celebrated its 67th Republic day on 26th January 2016, and displayed in front of the whole world a dazzling and powerful image of its achievements over the past few decades, a question yet remains in the minds of many concerned Indians that being such a vivid and potent country why is India still counted among developing countries and not developed ones.

After independence, the condition of India was abominable. The country which was once known as "THE GOLDEN BIRD" got sunk in agony and poverty. The Britishers drained away much of India's wealth, but, after 67 years of republic, today India stands heads-up as a strong, powerful and self-sufficient country. This journey included many difficulties, first among them was literacy. Solomon Ortiz once said, "Education is the key to success in life". So to take the nation forward education was to be provided even to the poorest of poors. The Indian Governments successfully improved the literacy rate from a mere 15-18% in 1950 to 45-50% in 1990 and an astounding rate of 75% in the recent times. The increase in the rate of literacy among women was much insignificant in the initial years of progress, but after 1990, women became more aware of the need of education and hence their literacy rate started increasing steadily. Currently 65.46% of women in India are literate compared to that of 82.14% of men. Now, in the list of achievements, the economic growth rate of India also has a remarkable position. Hundred years of British rule left India as poor as a church mouse. From a GDP growth of 3.6% in 1950s, India's hard labour took the growth rate to 7.4% which has attracted many foreign companies to invest in India. Several measures and policies were applied by the then governments of India to stabilise the economic conditions of India. Recently, science and technology has become the modern and sophisticated weapon of the world. Not only have they assisted countries to defend themselves, but also uncovered many new unknown facts in front of the world. In this advanced path, India has also come forward with many astounding discoveries and developments. Our young and talented scientists with the guidance of experienced ones have even been successful to send Mars craft, Mangalyaan, within a cost of $74million which is the cheapest of recent missions to Mars.

It is an unequivocal truth that India rose up as a powerful, diligent and influential country over the past few years but some of the hindrances still hold back India from becoming a super-power nation. Though 75% of Indians are enlightened by education today, still this rate is far less than the world literacy rate of 85%. As our ill-fate would have it, of all the nations, India currently has the largest illiterate population. Moreover, unemployment among qualified youngsters is also a major problem in India that needs to be taken care of. Currently 4.9% of Indians are still unemployed of which 7.2% are female that is far more than 4% of male. In the path of success, corruption is another 'can of worms' in India. This pest has its roots deep-seated in India as no matter what assignment you want to get over with, it becomes unattainable without bribing the officials. All such deeds have taken India to its current 76th position out of 168 countries dipped in corruption. Last, but not the least, the country where people worship Goddess Durga, the country which once had a female Prime Minister, is still unsafe for women. Assuredly crimes such as the dowry system, child marriage, and female feticide have come down in numbers, but, the number of acid attacks, rape cases and sexual harassments are increasing day by day at a current rate of 6.4%. In fact, a crime is committed against a woman in India in every 3minutes.

So India after 67 years of Republic has gained attention to an extent on the world stage and is also cooperating in many international events of importance such as fight against terrorism, clean and green environment, etc. But at the same time, it has to fight the devils of its own such as poverty, corruption and discrimination against women. Lofty intentions need to be met with needful actions. It's only then we can realise the India of our dreams: an India where the minds are without fear and heads are held high.

-Paramita Mazumdar