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I received a copy of the newsletter from a bank that my father served for 35 years. And immediately glanced (almost proof-read it) at it thanks to my joblessness these days. And I was taken aback by the sheer amount of casual attitude towards a publication that represents a public sector bank. The layout was haywire, the editing was plain absent, the photographs are photo-shopped and looking artificial. I immediately remembered the two Newsletters that my team & I edited in my last organization. We used to take 3 different perspectives on the content and used to have 2 additional layers of content ready for each section. Or for that matter the magazines during my college days, the seriousness was sky high. Because, we always felt that once it is published, it will represent us, our skills. For us, so much was at stake. But then these days, the newsletters/magazines and such publications are of least priority for any organization; as for them it is only a waste of money. So we used to position this exercise as a brand building (and sometimes revenue generating) mediums to get the necessary approvals. There is this saying that to handle jerks, you need to behave like one. And shamelessness is just one of the many attributes I learned during my Corporate journey.
When I stepped into the state where was born and (almost) raised up, the ruling government came into power for the fourth consecutive term. They have been enjoying the severe collapse of administration of Congress for decades and large-scale corruption the state has witnessed for years. In last 15 years of their ruling, lifestyles have become better than before. But not the number of Corporates has increased barring a few, industrialization has not increased as per the national average and so on. So from where the lifestyles have gone up! The last decade and a half saw the highest exodus of graduates and postgraduates leaving the state and going outside to find a job. They have been doing well which benefits their family back home. And indirectly, the state is taking the credit for the same. Otherwise sample this: the traffic rules have become so stringent that PCR vans are chasing people having a smoke in the roadside but not able to control chain-snatchers who are doing their job efficiently everyday. The new road constructions are being done under the supervision of some visionary engineers who are making some of the worst designed & planned flyovers and road expansions. Private hospitals (read large clinics) have mushroomed like anything, but the government healthcare has remained stagnant since a decade. So where is the difference!
And I am busy having mutton roganjosh and fried prawns. People everywhere lack a basic civic sense in this country, with stains of paan in the new Mumbai Metro within days of its inauguration or helping a person who met with an accident and lying on the road crying for help. We are just too concerned with our lives and its betterment. Or in the Football World Cup. And if we feel like speaking out, we take up the Facebook, or Twitter (for additional intellects). Or listen to Arnab at 9 PM. Yes, he does compensate our craving for noise. And life goes on.
(The article was first published at Soulscribers)