India will face its 16th General Elections in the summer of 2014. There are a lot of issues that are being spoken about in the country. Here is a list of all those issues that are hogging limelight in the country.
Education: Even after the passing of the Right to Education Act, 2009, the state of education in India is far from being good. Teacher to student ratio in most primary schools is as high as 34, not to mention of the quality of teachers.
Most of the teachers in government schools do not turn up for classes for some reasons or others. Most of the girls students drop out by the time when they reach middle schools as these schools do not have proper toilet facilities.
The higher education in India is in complete disarray. The universities do not stress on R&D, and mere churning out robots with no sparks of creativity or innovation in them. Most of the research scholars prefer to go abroad and stay there since the 'environment' there is more conducive to carry on their research activity very smoothly.
It is extremely disappointing that our country cannot give the intellectual space to those who like to do scientific research and ultimately contribute to knowledge. Investments from both private players and government must be encouraged in this direction. Incentives should be given to foreign universities to set up overseas campus in India.
Corruption: Corruption is definitely a huge issue in India. The AAP is trying hard to get across this point but somehow it seems to have lost its ground midway.
There is an urgent need to remove corruption from the country. The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2014 should go a long way in curbing this. The recent Whistleblower Protection Act passed by the Lok Sabha should also leave its mark in removing corruption. Its not the law alone but its correct implementation that is needed to make any impact on the ground.
Inefficiency in work: It is seen that most of the projects get stalled, work stagnates and government departments simply don't like to work because it is easier that way. This trickles down to the work efficiency of the lower levels of bureaucracy and administration that are the back bone of our governance. There is a clear lack of political will to get things done and increase productivity in the country.
Economic Growth and Financial Awareness: Economics is at the root of all the issues, and therefore it is extremely important that people especially those in power understand the basics of economics. Sadly, there are very few politicians in India today who can boast of understanding the economic undercurrents to run the nation.
Not every voter needs to understand the complicated economic theories, but every political leader must be familiar with the basics of economic theories. They must know the nuances of cutting interest rates to curb inflation or when they talk about achieving financial inclusion.
The need is to initiate serious discussion and debate on these issues. The general public should be aware of the matters that concern them and on which the future of this country rests.
There is more to governing the nation than holding portfolios and delivering lofty speeches. There is more to election campaigning than merely mud-slinging among opposing candidates.
There is much more to do for the development of India than it meets the eye. The archaic talks of secularism and communalism are no more an issue in the upcoming election. The real issue is inclusive growth, tangible improvements in education, employment and healthcare sectors etc.
The challenge is to make the voting population in India aware of their real problem. More than that is to make them take stand on all such issues. It is only then they may vote for the political party that promises best solution to all their problems.