Commonwealth Games: Is it Good for India’s Economy?

India is a developing country. Focus on the word developing as India is not yet developed. Ironically, India is a country which is, on one hand struggling with the problem of poverty since the time of independence while on the other hand is spending millions on the Commonwealth Games!

Forty percent of India’s population is below the poverty line which clearly indicates that the booming Indian economy is still unable to feed a majority of its citizens.

Climatic change like global warming is causing an agricultural crisis for the peasants all over the country, worsening their conditions which, in turn, is leading to inflation in the economy, energy resources are getting depleted, unskilled and poor people are forced to get involved in unorganized employment with least possible wages and lets not forget the skilled and literate unemployed…but who really cares? India is too busy with Commonwealth Games!

India’s present goal should be the development of human resources, dealing with poverty and creating a healthy, wealthy and literate India. I believe that as a result of the approaching Commonwealth Games, India, especially Delhi is undergoing a complete makeover where the infrastructure is concerned. Lavish five-star hotels, better flyovers, etc, are being constructed. Better buses can be seen running on the roads of Delhi.

Why all this? Just to show that India is on its way to become a developed nation soon?

But can it hide those shabby and disguised slums behind the shimmering and glamorous construction? Can it suppress the cries of those million hungry stomachs? Can it? Unfortunately not!

And can anyone explain how modern infrastructure helps those million unemployed men who have to support half a dozen of their family members without any source of income?

I won’t deny the fact that may be these games will have an international impact and benefit a particular section of the society temporarily. But this is where the most significant question arises that if the games will benefit a certain strata of the society which is already rich and powerful then what happens to those strata of the Indian population which is below the poverty line? Who bears the responsibility of their welfare?

I also agree that the Commonwealth Games will usher in a certain amount of employment but will it offer employment to millions of unemployed? And by the way this is only for a temporary period of time. Then what? Back to square one? Thus, a country like India wearing poverty in the form of national shame cannot afford to conduct such games at the cost of its poverty stricken citizens. Therefore India should first win the race against poverty and then think of going international through such ventures.

Hence India’s poverty and the hosting of Commonwealth Games are not at all compatible as for a nation the welfare of its citizen is its first priority and not the conduction of sports and leisure.

Lee Wie Mien Jackson

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