Thursday, March 23, 2023

Indian-origin CEOs and some unanswered questions


Dr Duggaraju Srinivasa Rao

As an Indian I am elated when I saw the photographs of 30 Indian origin CEOs in the COMMENT page of AVENUE MAIL dated 3.3.23. But that elation evaporated within minutes as some questions were lobbed at me by a teenager, when I showed him this item. The first question that teenager asked was why such talented guys left India and why the talented who remained in India could never reach such high status in Indian companies?. Those questions though thrown at me, in fact such questions are to be answered by the political class who even after so many decades of independence still talk and fight only caste interests and religious preferential treatments on not in term of recognizing the merit and using the talent of the meritorious in innovation and creation of jobs through which entire society gets the needed benefit.

In Indian political arena we see many parties representing one religion or the other including the currently raging head scarf issue, cow protection, unbridled right to convert others to its fold and receiving funds from abroad. We also have parties which have a vice like grip on the caste equations and will never allow people to look beyond their caste noses. These political parties force the younger generation to bind to the caste through an inducement of caste based reservations and make them part of their agitations for caste based census. These parties drill the young minds with so much conscious of caste that on attaining age they become the powerful member of ‘khaps’ ordering the honour killings. As long as parties and leaders chose sectarian agenda for their own growth it the society and general public who will suffer and the growth of the nation gets stunted.

It is because of our merit ignoring policies of the nation that the meritorious minds of our country are moving to the areas where the merit is recognized and talent is encouraged without consideration to the strata of birth, place of origin. Post-independence, first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru is credited with the establishment of IITs, the premier technological institutions in different countries and the policy is still now hailed as a vision. But the lop-side of Nehru vision is the absence of infrastructural facilities the trained minds coming out those prestigious institutions. India failed to accommodate them and those young inspired, trained minds moved to other countries where their services are utilized. Whatever the public money India invested to train IITians got wasted as the large chunk of them served as readymade human technologically trained human resource to American companies.  Using the India trained Indian brains and labour American multinationals thrived and made huge money but we still treat starting IITs as a major achievement of an individual.

India lost many brilliant minds to the west. The Noble laureates Hargobind Khurana, Subrahmanian Chandrasekhar, Venkitaramanan are all examples where they succeeded because they left the shores of India and reached the country where talent is recognized and encouraged.  Unfortunately our rulers never regretted for their policies of discouraging the merit but preferring caste based selections in the name of social justice. Had the policy of social justice showed the desired results and few thousand of those people who got higher education, employment positions claimed that they are the beneficiaries of the social justice policy and our family achieved the level of other and is no more in need of positive discriminatory policy, then we would have hailed the policy as successful one. India is yet to find one person who got the benefit of reservation and reached a position of eminence announcing ‘reservations vapasi’ for his family thus allowing the less fortunate ones from their own community. Even those who served as the first citizen, cabinet minister, Chief Justice of the country, the central service officers for decades are still claiming reservations thus depriving many other deserving families the benefits of the reservations guaranteed by the constitution. One wonder what would have been the reaction of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar to the current situation of garnering the fruits of reservations for equality in decade time has failed.

The current situation in India is, unfulfilled social justice, hugely disappointed social groups who has not got the benefit of reservation policy of over seven decades and another large group of people who are unhappy as they haven’t got the needed recognition for their merit as a result of that uncontained brain drain happening from India shores. The political leadership is unconcerned with the way all other American, European countries are using the Indian youth’s talent and developing their technology and business. Indian society is not regretting for loosing such a huge pool of human talent but is happy with the dollars repatriated by their progeny from the far way shores. The social and family sufferings because of kids moving to foreign countries are many but unfortunately not being reported or recorded.

The brain drain is a sad reflection of failed policies of successive governments to provide suitable employment for the young and educated. The loss of India is the gain of foreign countries. The Indian society instead of comprehending what it has lost and continue to lose is celebrating the Indian-origin CEO leading the multinationals. The CEOs of multinationals, irrespective of their roots, work only for the profit of those invested on them and exploitation of lesser countries through their market strategy and India is no exception for their exploitative methods.

Now the final question is should India try to retain the talent or allow other countries to exploit us through our own brethren, who are now championing their cause. Both the leaders and people with caste, religion bent of mind should ponder on this and decide which kind of interest have supremacy.   

(The views expressed are personal)

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