(In Singapore - During Summer Holidays)
MUM - Hey! Hey! where are you going?
JAI - I'm going out to get some fresh air. I'll be back.
MUM - Sure, have fun! be back by evening 7:30.
MUM - (On the phone) Hello? when are you coming home today?
DAD - Late, sorry.
MUM - Again? a-any luck?
DAD - Sadly no. I'm still trying.
MUM - Well...tomorrow's a weekend, we'll go to the temple.
DAD - Okay, bye.
MUM - Bye (drops the call).
(the mother watches Jai playing outside and makes tea)
(Jai comes home)
JAI - Hey ma!
MUM - Hi! how was it outside?
JAI - Played some outdoor badminton with my friends.
MUM - O-Okay then....
JAI - What happened?
MUM - N-No nothing, j-just thinking about what to cook for breakfast tomorrow.
JAI - Okay, I'll freshen up.
MUM - Sure.
(At the dinner table - only Mum and Jai eating)
MUM - You like the Dal?
JAI - It's good, why did you put tomatoes in it?
MUM - Jai, they're small pieces, just swallow them.
JAI - Next time, make egg curry.
MUM - How many times, Jai? you know how expensive it is to buy egg around here.
JAI - But still, so are the other vegetables. You're the type who heads down to Cold Storage and buys grocery worth $100.
MUM - Hey, if we need the veggies, we need them.
JAI - Same with egg. High in Protein and essential fat.
MUM - Well that yolk's no good to us anyway.
JAI - Just buy it tomorrow.
MUM - Nowadays you seem to be poking your nose into my cooking.
JAI - Summer, ma. School's out.
MUM - Oh well, just two weeks left anyways. Then freedom for me.
JAI - You're so eager to see me go back to school, now.
MUM - Hey, every mother needs a break.
JAI - But I'm like your only trouble around here.
MUM - Wow, Jai, just eat up. You make such a fuss over food you don't like.
JAI - When is dad coming?
MUM - Hmm....he's coming late today.
JAI - Today also?
MUM - Listen, your father is busy with work. At times he has heavy workload, and sometimes there is less. We'll just have to deal with it.
JAI - But he's been doing the same for like four months already. What's gotten into him?
MUM - He's busy, alright?
JAI - But, we could never see him on the weekdays, only on weekends when he sleeps in.
MUM - Why don't you ask your father, I'm sure he'll tell you.
JAI - Maybe I will (eats and leaves the table).
MUM - No TV today?
JAI - Reading a book.
MUM - Sure, why not.
(While Jai is sleeping - Dad comes home)
MUM - Come, come, I have dinner ready for you.
DAD - Yes, please.
MUM - Oh god, this same old routine, and for how long?
DAD - I don't know. I have to keep trying.
MUM - Did your-
DAD - Is Jai asleep?
MUM - Yes.
DAD - Okay good. Tomorrow is a weekend, after going to the temple, I'll break it to Jai.
MUM - Why now? he'll be upset.
DAD - Jai is mature enough, he's 15. I'm sure he can handle this if I just tell him.
MUM - He has good memories here in Singapore.
DAD - We all do, don't talk rubbish.
MUM - Well....
DAD - I have an appointment with someone in Mumbai.
MUM - Is it regarding-
DAD - Yes, yes.
MUM - Company said you can go to Vietnam, China, or Delhi.
DAD - I have asthma. I don't want to tackle pollution there.
MUM - No luck here?
DAD - Nope.
MUM - Well, if it's for the best....
DAD - Book a ticket for monday morning. I'll be back next day itself.
MUM - Sure.
(Singapore - Outram Park Hindu Temple. The family did their prayers and are now eating food there)
DAD - How is the sweet?
JAI - It's good.
MUM - You had the pongal?
JAI - Only little, I'm not that hungry.
DAD - Eat well. You need the strength.
JAI - Sure.
(Back home - Jai is on his laptop)
DAD - Jai?
JAI - Yes, dad?
DAD - I need to talk to you.
JAI - What's it about?
DAD - Listen um....you know that, for a while, I've been coming late, right?
JAI - Yes.
DAD - It can mean anything, a man has to work hard to earn. In this case, if a man has good job security, he may as well work half day or less than 12 hours each weekday.
JAI - (Disturbed) W-What?
DAD - I-I'm getting transferred.
(Jai is speechless)
DAD - This happened months ago. Boss is transferring me to either Vietnam, China, or Delhi.
JAI - Well? d-does that mean I have to start from scratch there?
DAD - Jai, listen, you know I won't do that. Considering my health conditions, places like China and Delhi won't suit me.
JAI - Okay, Vietnam?
DAD - I'm not taking anymore risks in an alien country. You're getting into your 10th Grade. This is an important lap for you, and I don't want you to mess this up.
JAI - You tried?
DAD - I tried for....many other jobs here. I couldn't get them.
JAI - (Sad) Well....
DAD - Don't feel down. Just understand this, alright. The world today is full of mysteries. You won't be comfortable in your own basket each day, in this century. Back in my days, when I lived in Chennai. My father remained in the same job, in the same company, from first day to last day. That was our situation there.
JAI - Okay.
DAD - You just have to accept this. You have to have a flexible mind, and most importantly, you need to be mobile. In today's world you get pushed around everywhere. You just have to be prepared, to face the unexpected. Last day of school, you thought you were staying here, didn't you?
JAI - Yes.
DAD - See what fate did to us. It's all a huge mystery, life's riddles as they always say. Don't worry, I don't want to take the chance at an alien planet, which is why I'm planning on finding one back home.
JAI - Living back in India again?
DAD - Why not? it'll be a comfortable environment, as soon as we adjust. We've paid visits back home in Chennai and Bangalore, haven't we? we know the people, we know the functioning of the country. We'll just have to adapt to the new environment.
JAI - Well....
DAD - I have an interview, in Mumbai. There's a high chance that I get the job, according to what the officials there, spoke. If you're looking for a percentage, there's a 75% chance we move back to India.
JAI - Fine.
DAD - Be prepared. I'm telling you this now so that you are mentally prepared to move out. Otherwise this will seem like rocket science to you on moving day. Understood?
JAI - Okay.
DAD - There's something else to this also. We all are green card holders here.
JAI - True.
DAD - Dependent pass, more like. Meaning you all are dependent on me, where ever your move.
JAI - Sure.
DAD - Suppose I get the job, I want you to think about this: either way, I will have to move to Mumbai by coming November, which is in 3 months. However, if you choose to, you can stay back here, comfortably finish your 10th Grade studies and come join me there.
(Jai is silent)
DAD - Choice is yours. I did my part, my fate is being tossed upon in India. Your decision will tell if we all move together, or just me.
MUM - Jai, listen. My father always told me one thing, that is we jump into a well, we jump together.
DAD - Hey! stop influencing him! he's old enough, he can make these decisions. Jai, listen, think carefully, school is going to start soon, make use of these difficult times to come up with a convincing decision.
JAI - Okay.
(Time flies - Dad returns home from Mumbai)
MUM - Well?
DAD - (Smiling) I got the job.
MUM - That's so good.
JAI - (Emotionless) Okay.
DAD - You thought hard about it?
JAI - No, I thought smart.
DAD - Sounds good. What do you insist? together? or just me?
JAI - Together.
MUM - You sure, Jai? 10th Grade is a crucial lap in your life.
DAD - Be quiet. Tell me why?
JAI - I'm quite comfortable with my academics record. I don't see why I should face trouble there in India.
DAD - Sure. Social status? your friends here?
JAI - We live in a century where we can keep in touch through social media. It won't be a problem for me.
MUM - Environment wise? you've never lived in India. You've been entirely brought up in foreign. Only for summer holidays you've gone there.
DAD - That's a point. Apart from adjusting with school there, the people and environment is entirely different. Expect hard times there, it's not like here and Hong Kong.
MUM - But they do say Mumbai is like Hong Kong.
DAD - Still, it's not the same. You're strong with your decision?
JAI - Damn sure.
DAD - 100 percent? affirmative?
JAI - 101% sure.
DAD - (Smiles) Namaste India.
(the family are in a cheerful mood upon moving back to India)
(Moving day - Jai is on skype conference call)
JAI - So yes, I'm moving back home.
RICHARD - And you never even told us?!
JUSTINE - You never said this on the last day!
JAI - Calm down you guys.
ANGELA - School's opening soon, and you're not there. What?
JAI - Angela please.
YUVAL - Listen, we need to have a get together, one last time. When are you leaving?
JAI - In two days.
ALL - Two days?! are you kidding me?!
JAI - I was busy having skype interviews with my new school whole of last week.
SIWON - Wow, Jai.
DANIEL - And you never even told us this shit.
JAI - Calm down, we'll go to Siloso Beach tomorrow. Fine?
ALL - Yes!
(Jai drops the skype call)
MUM - Siloso Beach?!
JAI - Ma, just a last get together.
MUM - Come on, you didn't think about this last week?
JAI - I was busy with the school interviews.
MUM - When is it?
JAI - Tomorrow, maybe evening.
MUM - Okay. Have it from 4:30 to 8pm or something. Don't be late, though.
(Jai is typing up invites for tomorrow)
JAI - Got it.
MUM - And please, watch out for the clock. Don't come back to Vivo City at 11:30, MRT trains don't run properly in some places after 12 midnight.
JAI - Sure, sure, I get it.
MUM - Just making sure. How much money?
JAI - Some $100.
MUM - What?
JAI - Everyone is bring $100. Wood fire Pizza is expensive there. We're having them.
MUM - Okay then. Last day anyways, what could go wrong?
JAI - Just look at the positives, we're moving back home!
MUM - Sure, we are.
(Tomorrow - At Siloso Beach. Everyone is having a great time)
RICHARD - Yes, bro! great party!
JAI - Thanks, man.
JUSTINE - Where in India are you going?
JAI - Mumbai?
JUSTINE - Your hometown?
JAI - No, hometown is Chennai.
JUSTINE - I see, but you know how to speak Indian.
YUVAL - Hindi, the language is Hindi.
JUSTINE - Oh, sorry. Hindi, you know how to speak Hindi.
YUVAL - There are many languages in India.
JAI - I don't speak Hindi.
JUSTINE - What do you speak then?
JAI - Tamil.
JUSTINE - And that's a different Indian language.
JAI - Yes.
JUSTINE - Complicated (moves off).
YUVAL - It's weird if you think about it. Every other country has just one or three languages maximum. You have like 20 or something.
JAI - More, including the dialects.
YUVAL - Oh that too, right. Well, (pats him on the back) I'm going to miss you. Class is different without you.
JAI - They have you.
YUVAL - Yes, but there's only me and a couple of other smart and realist people.
JAI - We've just got to accept diversity as it is.
YUVAL - Still, it's amazing how animals to kill others of their own species. Apart from the fact they protect their own children.
JAI - That's us.
YUVAL - (Smiles) Going to miss you, bro.
(At the beach pizza bar - ordering wood fire pizzas)
ANGELA - Oh yes! pizza and fruit juice!
SIWON - Get me a fanta.
(they're all eating)
DANIEL - (Gets up) To Jai, guys.
ALL - To Jai! (they drink).
JAI - Thanks guys. I'm going to miss you all.
DANIEL - You better pay us a visit one day.
JAI - Sure, I will.
ANGELA - Give me your skype and number, we'll keep in touch together.
JAI - Yes, um...check my facebook profile.
JUSTINE - Got it.
(next day morning - Jai sleeps in)
MUM - Well?
JAI - (Wakes up) Too tired I guess. Sort of partied hard last night.
MUM - (Smiles) You keep in touch with these guys.
JAI - I got them all sorted.
MUM - Here, your dad's at work. When he comes back we head to the airport together.
JAI - Okay.
MUM - Have your breakfast and pack your hand luggage and suitcase.
JAI - The packers are done with their work?
MUM - They finished right before you came back last night. I told to leave a few clothes and stuff behind, for us to pack.
JAI - I see.
MUM - I'm ordering breakfast from McDonald's what do you want?
JAI - Anything.
MUM - Okay (leaves the room).
(the whole day Jai is seen packing his suitcase and hand luggage, eating outside food, and also talking over the phone to some friends)
(Evening - Dad comes home)
DAD - Well then, everything packed?
MUM - Yes.
DAD - Here, lock them. I'll call the cab.
MUM - Jai, check if all the windows and lights are off.
JAI - Got it.
(after which they all head to the airport and check in - now waiting for the flight)
DAD - Well, we made it (smiles).
ALL - Yes indeed.
DAD - Flight is in an hours time. If you guys want to eat or....
MUM - I'm fine, Jai?
JAI - I'll be at the internet cafe.
DAD - Yes. Be back before the hour. Flight is going to board by then.
JAI - Be right back.
(Jai uses the internet cafe to go check Facebook to speak with his friends)
JAI - (Types the following status on Facebook) Flight is in another hour. Thank you all for being there for me, supporting me throughout my endeavors. I'll really miss you all. Let's keep in touch. This is Jai signing off.
(Flight takes off - Jai's parents are sleeping, while Jai is listening to music and watching the view outside)
AIR HOSTESS 1 - Welcome on board Singapore Airlines, have you ordered any in-flight meals?
DAD - Yes, 3 vegetarian meals.
AIR HOSTESS 1 - Ah yes, I've got them checked. Enjoy your flight.
(Jai uses the flight TV service to watch films throughout the journey. Towards landing)
CAPTAIN - Passengers on board Singapore Airlines flight SQ 255, this is your captain speaking. We will arriving Chhatrapati Shivaji Airport shortly, please ensure your seat belts are fasten, tray tables are closed, and any hand luggage is tucked in below. Thank you for flying Singapore Airlines, and we hope to see you again.
(Jai looks out the window to see Mumbai)
MUM - Well?
JAI - I'm coming back home (smiles).
MUM - You'll love it here.
(flight lands in Mumbai)
DRIVER - Mr Balaji?
DAD - Yes, that's me.
DRIVER - (Shakes hands) Welcome to Mumbai, sir. Come (assists with the luggage).
(they head over to a service apartment)
(At the Service Apartment - Oakwood, Juhu)
DAD - Well, we're here!
(Jai peaks out of the window)
JAI - Wow! look at that celebration outside!
MUM - It's a happening place, Jai. What did I tell you? it must be a wedding of some sort.
JAI - This big?!
(they all look out the window)
ALL - Hehehehe.
(Joining day in Jai's new school)
HOMEROOM - Guys! I want you to meet, Jai. Our new student from Singapore.
ALL - Oho!
JAI - Hi, I'm Jai.
NATHAN - How was Singapore?
JAI - Good, very nice city.
ARMAAN - You like Bombay so far?
JAI - Looks good, so far.
ALL - Hehehe.
LAYLA - What do you miss about Singapore?
JAI - My friends and memories there.
ALL - Aw...
HOMEROOM - So yes, welcome to École Mondiale. Hope you enjoy your time here (smiles).
(Jai is having a blast in his new school)
NITISH - Hey! Jai, bro! come here na!
JAI - Yes?
NITISH - We'll do some shots upstairs?
JAI - Yes, why not?
(they play basketball upstairs and have a great time - now end of day)
MUM - Hi!
JAI - What're you doing in school, ma?
MUM - First day, right? came to see you.
JAI - It was fun (notices other students giving all their bags to the maids). You saw that?
MUM - What?
JAI - The students, giving all their load on the maid.
MUM - Yes, I know. It's an international school, Jai. Not like Singapore, because you'll find big shots around here.
JAI - You never told me about this.
MONICA - Bye, Jai! have fun here!
JAI - Bye.
MUM - Who's that?
JAI - Monica.
MUM - Monica? last name?
JAI - I think it's Lulla.
MUM - What did I just tell you? you have direct connection with big shots.
JAI - What?
MUM - That Monica's father owns Eros International, you know, this film company.
JAI - (Eyes wide open) Oh shit!
MUM - Did I really not tell you?
JAI - No, and please tell me more.
MUM - Actress Kajol's daughter studies here, and is two years younger than you.
JAI - We get to meet Kajil during Parents teacher meets?!
MUM - Quiet down, Jai. Things are like that here. Just make sure you don't get influenced by their habits.
JAI - Habits?
MUM - You'll know it.
(Next day in school)
MURALI - Umm....new guy?
JAI - Yes, I'm Jai.
MURALI - I'm Murali.
JAI - Tamil?
MURALI - How did you know?
JAI - Your name.
MURALI - Yes, but, I don't speak it. I'm brought up here.
JAI - I see.
MURALI - Come with me.
(they attended classes together and were like good buddies)
MURALI - Stick with me if you want to succeed in life.
JAI - Why?
MURALI - It's not like where you're from. There people like us who want to succeed, then there are those who are ready to take over their parent's company.
JAI - Seriously.
MURALI - Take for example, Monica. Her father owns-
JAI - Eros International.
MURALI - Yes, but look at her. (Whispers) No offense, but I don't think she's ready to take over the family business.
JAI - Why?
MURALI - She's dumb as anything.
JAI - That's mean.
MURALI - Listen, I've had NRI friends before. What you call dumb over there is much less here.
JAI - I don't get it.
MURALI - I'll give you an analogy: there are the lazy ones, and then there are hardworking ones like us.
JAI - So, Monica's not intellect?
MURALI - She wants to become a film director, yet she's not committed to do the stuff. We had film project in IT last year, she slacked off and got a 2.
JAI - 2 on 7?!
MURALI - Calm down, you'll find at least 10 people of that sort here.
JAI - So...10 out of 35 get 2s here?
MURALI - We have intellects in this country, bro. Not so much in rich schools like this. If you go to public schools, or even better, South India, you find them.
JAI - Hmm....
MURALI - You want to know one thing? this same Monica girl, had a crazy 15th birthday party last year. It was during the Easter break, when she called everyone to come to Goa.
JAI - Okay.
MURALI - You don't know what happens in Goa?
JAI - No idea.
MURALI - You go there to get drunk and to go clubbing.
JAI - Woah.
MURALI - I know what you're thinking. This shit doesn't happen in Singapore. Yes, it doesn't. Hey! welcome to India. Being an Indian, and kind of a realist, I admit we have severe loopholes. Which was why these guys all had hangovers in school.
JAI - Hangover?!
MURALI - You have a week's break, and she chose for everyone to drink heavily at her party the day before. You should've seen it. It was like Diary of a Wimpy Kid, meets Walking Dead.
JAI - TMI.
MURALI - Huh?
JAI - Too much information.
MURALI - Just keeping you informed. Beware.
JAI - Well, o-okay. I'll have to mingle with these guys eventually.
MURALI - Mingle with them, that's fine. Don't be like them, that's my advice here. You're getting advice from a guy who's been sincere with hard work from Grade 1. I've seen these dudes from Day one, elementary. It's like-
JAI - I got it (walks off).
MURALI - Meh.
(Weekends - Jai and family tour around Mumbai)
DAD - Well? how are you liking school?
JAI - Good.
MUM - What happened? you seem dull.
JAI - It's nothing.
MUM - Tell us.
JAI - Fine. I have this friend called Murali in school.
DAD - Oh, Tamil?
JAI - Yes, but can't speak it.
DAD - Aw.
JAI - So yes, he advised me on this school's happening and all. Now I'm kind of skeptic about this shift.
MUM - Why?
JAI - He told me all about the behaviors of these guys, and events and all.
MUM - Listen, Jai. We knew this from the start. We didn't want you to distract yourself with all this nonsense.
DAD - Right. Your job is to succeed in life and do what's right for yourself. I don't know about rich students in India, but having studied in a Public school myself, I can tell you that all sorts of bullying and loots can happen.
MUM - We're not in the 1960s.
DAD - Okay, so bullying isn't an issue. Abuse and behavior can be the issue. It's those issues around peer pressure. You should be able to tackle it easily.
MUM - If someone offers you something, refuse.
DAD - Yes, please play safe. You don't know if they could be drugging you.
JAI - You never mentioned this disclaimer.
DAD - Jai, it's all a learning experience. It may not be in your school. But I've heard it still happens. In fact, my own father, I'm quite ashamed to admit it. He too was introduced to smoking by peer pressure back then.
MUM - Again, not ancient times.
DAD - Shut up, dear. Point is, be careful. If you think this Murali mouth is disturbing you, then by all means just stay away from him. He'll probably make you panic for everything.
MUM - It's nothing, Jai. India's a great place. Just because we're coming back here after a decade, we're being bombarded by all these safety procedures. Here, the Queen's Necklace.
(they see Queen's Necklace and tour around the area - they tour about South Bombay together)
(Next day morning)
DAD - I found a house.
MUM - Great, where?
DAD - A pent house in Oshiwara.
MUM - Andheri West, right?
DAD - Yes.
JAI - (Wakes up) Oh nice.
DAD - Pent house, Jai.
MUM - I guess all other houses are small.
JAI - India is the home to 1.3 billion people. That in mind, so we have smaller space for each person to live in.
DAD - Okay....quite insightful.
MUM - Today, we're going around North Bombay today.
JAI - Oh great.
MUM - I'll buy Bisleri Water, Jai. Don't drink water from the taps like Singapore.
JAI - Thanks for telling me, at late notice.
DAD - You drank from the taps?
JAI - It was an accident, I forgot.
DAD - Oh come on, Jai. Be sensible, alright? this is India, water isn't clean right out of the pipes. We get it from Bisleri or Aquafina.
JAI - Fine.
(they go touring around North Bombay - In places like Juhu, Andheri etc)
(Night time - Lokhandwala Market, at High Point restaurant)
DAD - Come, this is a good restaurant I heard.
WAITER - Order?
DAD - Dho plate, Masala Dosa. What do you want, Jai?
JAI - Same as you guys.
DAD - Theen plate, Masala Dosa.
WAITER - Okay (leaves).
MUM - That was a good tour today, right? Juhu and Andheri.
DAD - Highlight was Prithvi Theatre tour and the food court at Infiniti Mall.
JAI - Sure (thinking hard).
MUM - You okay, Jai? tired? you have school tomorrow. We'll have the driver ready to pick us up.
JAI - Sure.
DAD - Jai, tired?
JAI - Not really.
DAD - Then?
JAI - What's the gap?
DAD - Gap?
JAI - Yesterday we went to South Bombay, today North Bombay. Both parts of the city are so different.
DAD - How?
JAI - Look at how developed that part of the city is, and look at the North. Almost abandoned from development.
MUM - Jai, that's ridiculous. You know one thing? Actor Amitabh Bachchan lives in North Bombay. He's not a fool to live here if there's no development.
JAI - I mean, if you look at it. It's only the airport that's all nice and high-fi. The moment You move further into the city, it gets worse.
DAD - Well, it's not Singapore. India is still getting there, my friend.
JAI - Still?
MUM - Jai.
JAI - Look at the roads, infrastructure, quality of living in the south. Then look here, the roads are like bumpy, and full of gravel and construction sand here and there.
MUM - If a city is developing it has to be that way, Singapore didn't jump the entire lap. They had Lee Kuan Yew and all the other great people lead Singapore throughout. One of their phases was this.
JAI - But-
DAD - You mean to say North Bombay isn't proper?
JAI - Well, technically no.
DAD - Then?
JAI - I mean, India as a whole. It's the same everywhere in this country. That day we went to Jaipur, only the first few sections of land were developed - the rest?
DAD - It's a marketing technique, Jai.
JAI - Explain.
DAD - See, people want to feel welcome when they arrive anywhere in this country, for example. For that, they use the power of aesthetics to make the airport area very pleasing for people. Then, there's us, who are still working on developing other parts of the city.
JAI - Why not develop land for those who are already living, then for those who are yet to arrive?
DAD - Well....
WAITER - (Places their food) Dosa (leaves).
(Jai picks up the glass of water on the table)
DAD - No, don't.
(Jai puts down the cup)
DAD - Drink Mineral Water. Don't rely on this.
JAI - Still, there's one thing I can't get straight. If we already many smart people in this country, what's holding us back?
MUM - How does this relate? eat your Dosa, Jai. You're probably hungry.
JAI - (Eating Dosa) I don't understand. If education is the solution to solving problems and putting an end to the bad, what's holding us back?
DAD - No, no. Education can't always be the solution. What you just said is controversial. You can be someone uneducated and still bring about a change.
JAI - Well....did it? I'm hearing all sorts of news in papers about school toppers getting perfect 500/500, or even acheiving top grades and all. Great! it's been happening in my times, even in your times, and dad you're one of them. Still, if news like this is so common, then why haven't we solved problems like these quickly?
JAI - I mean, sure, this country is getting better by the time. India wasn't the same as it was when I was born. At times, I just feel things are pretty slow, and sometimes feel we're lazy.
DAD - Eat up, Jai. You're hungry, and that's making you cranky. We've had a long day today.
JAI - Dad, come on.
DAD - You have school tomorrow. We can pick this up tomorrow.
(Finishes his Dosa)
DAD - Why?
JAI - What?
DAD - You think the nation is quite lazy?
JAI - Sure.
DAD - Why?
JAI - Let me give you an analogy. Everyday you see me, but you can't tell the rate at which I'm growing day by day. Yet, our grandparents, we visit once every year. They are comfortably able to say that we've grown significantly. Why is that? Someone whom I've lived with most of my life, yet someone I visit once a year, can point out the difference. Likewise the same this.
MUM - You're really philosophical.
JAI - Can someone please explain how?
MUM - How what?
JAI - If we have the potential to launch a rocket to Mars, then why can't we develop our country's standard of living?
DAD - That's a good question. Whatever the answer is, I believe it's due to opportunities elsewhere.
JAI - Tell me more.
DAD - Why do you think I left for Hong Kong and Singapore? I could've stayed put in Chennai. I had a better opportunity overseas, standard of living, education, everything. It was pitch perfect for me and the family.
JAI - Makes sense.
DAD - Tell me, if you were a Scientist, would you want to live in the same harsh conditions? or in a place that has the canvas set for you?
(Jai is silent)
DAD - Something you might want to think about. Let's go, it's getting late.
(Jai and the family leave for home)
(At School - Before Geography Class Begins)
JAI - And....I just couldn't get my head around this issue. I mean, why didn't you leave for abroad?
MURALI - Me? Why me?
JAI - You're dad has the same status as mine. Why couldn't you guys move elsewhere if choices are better?
MURALI - Well, that was our choice. We have a family here in Mumbai, apart from that, we don't want to lose contact with the rich culture and heritage here. It's something you won't get when you go elsewhere like the US, even Singapore.
JAI - True.
MURALI - I bet you couldn't even celebrate Diwali there.
JAI - We did, but we're restricted to only burst crackers.
MURALI - You see? Though opportunities are better elsewhere, you'll be missing out on culture and family. Our family values work, as well as culture and famil equally. It's why we didn't move.
JAI - I see.
MURALI - Problem is, you just don't know what it's like to be an Indian like me. Sure I'm kind of a realist, but regardless of that I have a strong background of an ideal Indian. I celebrate festivals, watch cricket every now and then, travel to places like Ladakh and Kerala, I even speak the dominant language: Hindi.
JAI - I don't get why Hindi is a dominant language.
MURALI - The capital is Delhi. People speak Hindi there, therefore it's Hindi. Apart from that, majority of the states speak Hindi. That's majority against the languages which have only one state speaking it. Even here, people speak Hindi as well as Marathi.
JAI - It doesn't happen back in Tamil Nadu though.
MURALI - I've read the headlines a couple of times about how our home state had attempts on getting rid of Hindi. Something on the lines of being "Anti-Hindi Speaking" State.
JAI - I see.
(Geography Teacher walks in)
MS. OYNDRILLA - Hello class, how's everyone doing? Jai, new student. You adjusted to our school?
JAI - Yes, miss.
MS. OYNDRILLA - That's good to hear. Today, we'll be continuing with the topic Population and Migration. Where did we last leave off?
ARMAAN - Miss, about push and pull factors about MEDCs and LEDCs.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes. So let's review (drawing a table on the whiteboard) Let's do push and pull factors of MEDCs first. Armaan, name one pull factor.
ARMAAN - Miss, better opportunities.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, more and better opportunities. Simran?
SIMRAN - Better Standard of Living.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, so in terms of quality of living, food, and other basic necessities, good. Shyla?
SHYLA - Better income?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, as the economy is great in MEDCs compared to LEDCs. Jai? give it a go?
(Jai remembers all that his father mentioned last night)
JAI - Um....education?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, for schooling and university. That can come under opportunities too.
JAI - Okay.
(Jai realizes that this lesson might solve his questions)
MS. OYNDRILLA - Okay, and now the push factors. What are the problems of moving into MEDCs? Let's look at this in the context of people from LEDCs moving into MEDCs.
MURALI - Language Problems, miss.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, language could be a problem, thus restricting some knowledgable immigrants from getting top-notch jobs. Anyone else?
VATSAN - Miss, Racism?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, Racism is another factor. We can say that this could lead to cultural conflicts too, right?
VATSAN - Yes.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Good, Aarav?
AARAV - Huh?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Give me another push factor.
AARAV - Um....(not paying attention as he was playing games on his MacBook)
MS. OYNDRILLA - Were you paying attention?
(everyone draws attention towards Aarav)
AARAV - I was, miss.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Then? why do you have your laptop open? this is discussion time. Close your laptop.
(Aarav closes his laptop)
MS. OYNDRILLA - Tell me.
AARAV - I don't know.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Pay attention, Aarav. This is the tenth time this semester. I'll call up your parents if you distract yourself with these gadgets. This is a warning to everyone else as well. No distractions while class time. Only do so when instructed.
MURALI - (Whispers) What did I tell you?
JAI - Shush.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Well then, another push factor?
JAI - Miss, could this lead to religious conflict as well?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, definitely. This is a good point. We can connect this with cultural conflicts and Racism as they're all related. Good, any other points?
(Class is silent)
MS. OYNDRILLA - That's good. Now then, I'll move on to the "Brain Drain" Phenomena. This is a phenomena by which there is net movement of educated people moving out of their home country, and off to developed countries.
(Jai is very much interested in this discussion)
MS. OYNDRILLA - What we've just discussed, the push and pull factors, they are all in relation to this phenomena. Can anyone name which type of countries will be greatly affected?
JAI - Miss, LEDCs?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Correct. LEDC countries are mostly affected.
(Jai remembers his dad's example about the scientist - last night)
MS. OYNDRILLA - This phenomena has greatly affected countries like India.
(Jai is even more interested)
MS. OYNDRILLA - Can anyone tell me why?
MURALI - Miss, better opportunities abroad. As in, the pull factors of MEDCs.
MS. OYNDRILLA - That's a good way to summarise it. This is basically to do with everything mentioned about the pull factors of MEDCs. Let's move into the cause and effects of the "Brain Drain" phenomena.
ARMAAN - Loss of educated people could mean reduced productivity.
MS. OYNDRILLA - That is true, as the very educated have moved abroad for better opportunities. Anything else?
SIMRAN - Economic Growth.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, if many people move abroad then there'll be less people working. If not, then this will mean many people with fewer skills being employed.
JAI - But, isn't that raising employment rate of the country? because of the net migration of skilled people, this would open opportunities for the others.
MS. OYNDRILLA - True, but many of those won't fit under the criteria for attaining the job posts. Say we have many software engineers leave India to USA, and this is true as it has happened. Can we have people who are not properly qualified to take up those jobs?
JAI - No.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Yes, so it puts burden on the productivity and economic growth. If more people leave a country, it means the remaining workforce have to work even harded to satisfy the country's growth. Otherwise, many factors such as value of currency, products, and so on, they will become higher. Jai!
JAI - Yes, miss?
MS. OYNDRILLA - You came from Singapore, right? what is the exchange rate of Singapore dollars to Indian rupees?
JAI - Miss, I believe 1 dollar is 50 rupees.
MS. OYNDRILLA - Keeping in mind the exchange rate told by Jai. If suppose we lose even more skilled workers in this country, the existing workforce will have to work even harder to satisfy the country's growth. It's a challenging task, and if they can't, then 1 Singapore Dollar could equal 55 rupees, or 60 rupees, and it can keep going.
VATSAN - Say there's a possible solution to this, what would it be?
MS. OYNDRILLA - Possible solutions would be to open up better opportunities in fields such as education and jobs for people. That way, more people can be given access to education, and by doing so they can comfortably work in their home country.
(Jai understands the concept clear in his head, and leaves the class happy about learning the answer to his queries)
(At their new home in Oshiwara - eating dinner)
MUM - Finally, this day took forever. The packers have been unloading the furniture from morning. They just left two hours ago.
DAD - That long?
MUM - Well, our bed and the extendable sofa took long. It didn't fit in the elevator so they had to bring it up the steps.
JAI - They carried them up fourteen floors?!
MUM - Well yes, and you were busy doing homework to even realize this. Not to mention we had to have them remove the covering, and place the furniture in its place.
DAD - I see.
MUM - Although, they did have a small tea break in he afternoon, but that was it.
JAI - I found the answer.
DAD - Answer to what?
JAI - What you told me last night, at the restaurant. It makes perfect sense.
DAD - I told you to think about it, not come up with an answer.
JAI - It was during Geography class, we were learning about Population and Migration. Ms. Oyndrilla talked about this phenomena called "Brain Drain". It's about net migration of skilled people from home country to developed countries.
DAD - I see.
JAI - Now I'm just glad I took up Geography instead of History.
MUM - Yes, because what are you going to do, learning about old stuff?
JAI - Just saying, my initial choice was History.
DAD - You're into thinking about tomorrow, not fixing the path of yesterday.
JAI - Nice reference!
DAD - Get to the point. What's the solution?
JAI - If a country loses skilled people, it puts pressure on existing workforce in the country to work harded. Otherwise, the value of currency can go higher. Existing people can't take up very skilled jobs like software engineering, unless they are qualified. That puts pressure on unemployment.
DAD - I see.
JAI - It all makes perfect sense. You as Actuary, demand more income, and for that you go off to places like Hong Kong and Singapore, where value of currency is good because of great economic growth.
(Dad just sips his water - amused over Jai's conclusions)
JAI - Standard of living though too. Stuff like proper roads, proper food and water, housing. It all makes perfect sense.
DAD - Ehem....solution?
JAI - We just have to make sure education and better opportunities are offered here. That way, more people get access to proepr education, and can consider a job here in this country.
DAD - Well then, (gets up) good lesson that was (leaves).
JAI - What's with, dad?
MUM - I've told you many times to not talk about a man's earnings. They're very personal.
JAI - I was just stating the facts, he was the one who asked for details.
MUM - Jai, there are certain things you don't ask or discuss. Never talk to students about their percentages, never talk to women about their age and weight, and never talk to men about the earnings (leaves the table).
JAI - Mum! Mum!
MUM - Are you going to finish that biriyani?
JAI - Yes, I'm really hungry.
MUM - Just be careful. It's outside food, and looks too orange.
JAI - Mum, these guys would've been sued by now for delivering poison to everyone's doorsteps.
MUM - Well, you never know. You're the guy who drank tap water when you got here.
(Jai continues to eat)
(At School - during break)
MURALI - You got your answer didn't you.
JAI - Yes, I'm glad I attended that class.
MURALI - I told you about that Aarav.
JAI - Murali, please. Stuff like this happens at times.
MURALI - Not when you do it for the tenth time this semester. More specifically, this first month of the academic year.
JAI - Oh wow (feels his stomach churning badly).
MURALI - Well?
JAI - I-I'll be back.
(Runs to the bathroom - and has diarrhea)
JAI - (Leaving the bathroom) That was not good.
MURALI - Well?
JAI - You're waiting outside the entire time? that's creepy.
MURALI - Well, I don't play basketball like those gorillas.
JAI - You need to learn to stop exxagerating about everything.
MURALI - Hey, when you're bombared by shit, you just have to tell.
(In English Class)
MS. ELAINE - Now then, moving on to the court scene. This is a debatable argument: was the court scene a fair trial? and was justice served to Shylock?
(Jai feels uneasy and asks to be excused - he vomits outside class)
CLEANER - Hey, hey, bathroom hai na?
JAI - Y-Yes, I'll go.
(He goes to the bathroom and vomits)
JAI - That's not good, either.
(At the nurse's room - Jai is lying in bed)
MUM - (Arrives) Where's Jai?
NURSE - Jai's mother?
MUM - Yes, Jai?
(goes to see Jai)
MUM - Now, why did you call me? shouldn't you be in class?
JAI - I told you I don't feel well.
MUM - Stomach ache right?
JAI - Diarrhea too.
MUM - Hmm....I told you not to eat the Biriyani completely.
JAI - You ate the same food too.
MUM - Come on, we didn't drink tap water.
JAI - Please just help me, I want to go home. I can't bear the pain.
MUM - Alright, alright. You finish your last two classes for the day. It's lunch time now, I'll buy you some yoghurt and plain rice from the canteen. Eat up and finish the day off.
JAI - But-
MUM - Jai, listen.
(After attending the last two classes he is at home resting with fever)
MUM - Fever, right?
(Doctor has come home to see Jai)
DOCTOR - Yes, that too High Fever. Do you feel any shivering?
JAI - No.
DOCTOR - Body pain?
JAI - Yes.
DOCTOR - Vomiting sensation?
JAI - Yes, w-whenever I eat.
DOCTOR - Hmm....how's your stool?
JAI - I think Diarrhea.
DOCTOR - Give him Paracetamol, along with the indigestion tablets. Don't give him any fizzy drinks. I recommend Minute Maid juice.
MUM - How about his diet?
DOCTOR - For now, no spicy food. His digestive system seems to be malfunctioning of some sort.
MUM - Okay.
DOCTOR - That's all from my side.
MUM - Thank you. How much is the fee?
DOCTOR - 2000 Rupees, consultation fee.
(Mum pays up)
MUM - Thank you, doctor. (Turns to Jai) Headache? Drowsiness?
JAI - (Soft voice) Yes.
MUM - Don't take rest just yet, it's 6pm. I have to light a lamp for Goddess Lakshmi.
JAI - Mum, I think Goddess Lakshmi better understand that my health is not fine.
MUM - Stay awake, and she'll promise speedy recovery. These are just some rules you'll have to follow.
(At the Dinner table)
DAD - Feeling good, Jai?
JAI - (Sick) No.
DAD - What happened all of a sudden?
MUM - It's the biriyani, the tap water, all put together.
DAD - You need to careful, Jai.
JAI - Yes, but I don't see why the biriyani. They would've been sued by now if-
DAD - Jai, remember what you told about standard of living last night? it's not that great like Singapore here. You need to be careful. This was our first lesson here. Now onwards, be careful. 10th Grade now, you can't afford to take too many leaves.
JAI - Sure (after finishing his meal he rushes to the bathroom to vomit).
MUM - Oh dear.
JAI - (Returns) That was my dinner, I vomitted everything I just ate.
DAD - I'm not liking where this is going.
JAI - Applying my Biology knowledge, I just lost all the energy I obtained. I'm basically relying on the carbohydrates and fats I consumed from lunch time in school.
MUM - Here, I'll prepare a herbal mix for you to drink. You'll get better.
JAI - Thanks.
MUM - Meanwhile, do some steaming. To help relieve you of your headache and all.
JAI - Sure.
(Next day Morning - Jai is found shivering very badly)
MUM - (Crying) Jai, Jai! please stop shivering!! what're you doing?! i-it's 34ºC! please stop.
JAI - (Weak and Shivering) I-I can't ma, it's health.
MUM - Here, here (crying) have this third blanket on you.
(Jai is still shivering)
MUM - Don't shiver, Jai. You're scaring me.
(Jai is still shivering)
MUM - (Crying) Jai! Jai! no!! (picks up the intercom phone and calls neighbour) Hello? Shashi? can you come over? I'm really scared.
(Neighbour Shashi shows up)
SHASHI - What happened, dear?
MUM - It's Jai, look, he won't stop shivering. It's his third layer of blanket.
SHASHI - (Checks his temperature and all) Hmm....I see.
MUM - I don't know where to go now. I-Is it Malaria?
SHASHI - Shouldn't be the problem, they're fogging here once every week.
MUM - (Crying) Well, h-he did eat bad food and water.
SHASHI - Was he vomiting his food out after consuming?
MUM - Yes, yes.
SHASHI - That's the problem, he's quite weak. The food he ate, he immediately vomited it out. He has little or no energy. So he's shivering to preserve body heat.
MUM - (Tears) I see. What should I do now?
SHASHI - Have you seen Dr. Gopalan?
MUM - Yes, yes we have.
SHASHI - It looks quite serious here. Better take him to Ambani hospital.
MUM - S-Sure.
(Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital)
DOCTOR 1 - Hmm....
DAD - What's the result?
DOCTOR 1 - Temperature is not looking good, it's 104ºF. Health is in bad condition, we have to rush him into ICU.
MUM - (Tears) Oh no.
DAD - Anything else, doctor?
DOCTOR 1 - We'll give you further details about his health once we conduct ECG, X Ray, and so on other tests.
(ICU Room - Next day morning)
NURSE 1 - Good morning, Jai.
JAI - Morning.
(Nurse takes blood sample from each arm and leaves)
JAI - Where are my mum and dad?
NURSE 1 - They'll be here soon.
JAI - Wow, feels like 7 in the evening.
NURSE 1 - It's 9 in the morning.
JAI - Woah.
NURSE 2 - Here, your breakfast.
(Jai couldn't manage to eat them all)
(Mum walks in)
JAI - Mum!! you're here! finally!
MUM - Why? what happened?
JAI - I'm so lonely. I know it's ICU, but sometimes I feel like I'm in a box. There are no windows here to tell you what time of the day it is.
MUM - I see.
JAI - Oh, someone's here.
DR. SHETTY - Hello Jai, I'm Dr. Shetty. You're personal doctor.
MUM - Hi, I'm Jai's mum.
DR. SHETTY - Hi, very nice to meet you.
MUM - How's his tests going on?
DR. SHETTY - We had the blood samples taken in the morning. After his lunch we'll have the X Ray and ECG tests.
MUM - What do the blood reports say?
DR. SHETTY - Haemoglobin level is abnormal, he has less of those in his blood. Likewise same case with lymphocytes.
MUM - I see.
DR. SHETTY - We're still wondering what kind of case he has. We believe it's on the lines of Typhoid.
MUM - Okay.
JAI - Typhoid?
DR. SHETTY - Waterborne disease, Jai. Did you consume bad food and water?
JAI - Sort of.
DR. SHETTY - Then there we have it. But we'll confirm this in another two days or so.
MUM - Okay.
(Dr Shetty checks his pulse rate and leaves)
MUM - Ate your breakfast?
JAI - Not fully though, only half.
MUM - Jai, you need to eat properly.
JAI - Yes, I know. I can't though.
MUM - Well that's not going to help. You're eating less than you actually need.
JAI - But hey! good news! I'm not vomiting after my meals anymore.
MUM - That's a start.
(After a couple of days)
DR. SHETTY - Jai?
JAI - Yes, doctor?
DR. SHETTY - How are you feeling?
JAI - Feeling quite the same, but a bit better.
DR. SHETTY - We've just finished analysing your case. It turns out that you do have Typhoid.
JAI - I do? well...
DR. SHETTY - But, it's quite a complicated case. You kidneys are malfunctioning as well.
JAI - I see....is it bad?
DR. SHETTY - Well, as of now, I'm just letting you know the facts. But we can sort this issue out. Now that we've confirmed your case, you can move into the Ward tonight.
JAI - Thank you, doctor
DR. SHETTY - And um...we'll be giving you a shot of Methylpred, for your recovery purposes.
JAI - Methylpred um....is that, a type of drug?
DR. SHETTY - A steroid. We'll be giving you a steroid for your recovery purpose. Nothing to worry about. We're just letting you know, in case you experience weird thought processes and such.
JAI - Well, I-I'm fine, if it's for the best.
DR. SHETTY - (Smiles) Take care, Jai. I'll see you tomorrow.
(Jai is now moved into the Ward and parents can now come in and see him properly)
MUM - There, there, you finally made it.
JAI - How long have I been here?
MUM - You're being hospitalized for a week.
JAI - So, in another three days, I'm discharged?
MUM - Looks like, if results are good.
JAI - Finally, I'm getting bored. You know what's good about the Ward?
MUM - What?
JAI - I can now keep track of time because of the window next to me.
MUM - Hehehe.
(Jai turns on the TV and switches to Times Now - Debate is going on)
REPORTER - Now then, we're talking about the current floods in Chennai. Chennai is seeing the worst of floods till date. Alongside me on the panel we have Tamil Nadu ministers such as Transport ministers, resources minister, and the system management minister. So tell us, why is this the worst flood event?
SM. MINISTER - I would say, root problem is because of heavy rain, obviously but-
REPORTER - Let's recap, one of the biggest causes of floods are due to urbanisation and poor drainage management. Being minister of these systems, what is your take on the issue?
SM. MINISTER - I agree on your part about how maintanence was not conducted properly, but at the same time, traffic congestion and political party rallies have made it difficult to maintain these systems.
REPORTER - You've had since the start of independence to ensure that these systems are up and running. Even before, when population of Tamil Nadu was not too much, you folks had the time to take all precautions. Now what seems to have happened is due to poor flood management.
(Debate argument is taking place - Jai is gaining interest in this)
JAI - (Narration) If someone like me who just entered the nation, gets bombarded by life-threatening diseases as such. Then what about the rest of the population? India makes up 1.3 billion people, there's certainly a high rate of disease occurence as such. From that day on, I made up mind to serve as the country's backbone. I believe we can bring the nation up, and get rid of all this "Chalta Hain" attitude. It's all a matter of a few people like us, having a strong idea, and the adrenaline rush to take us to new heights.
(Flight from Toronto reaches Mumbai)
JAI - (Narration) It's been nearly 15 years since that day I was admitted in hospital for Typhoid. My friend, Murali took interest in the vision I had and joined me on this journey. We both went abroad and studied at a university in Toronto. Now we're back with three more NRI's who take interest in this mission. Having graduated at the age of 23, we all spent the next 7 years building up our own foundation called "Lite Foundation". A foundation with a strong goal of giving back to society, more specifically, our homeland.
(At TEDx Presentation in South Bombay)
HOST - Alright everyone! welcome to TEDx! w'ere very glad to have you all here.
HOST - We're happy to say that we have our Honourable Prime Minister as well as Chief Minister of Maharashtra join us today. Thank you for taking part.
(Crowd goes wild)
HOST - We have three TED Talks today. We have one from Karthik Ganesan, a selfmade Businessman in Mumbai. Next we have Sawan Bhandhari, sharing his experience of learning music and teaching children about this art. In the end, we have "Lite Foundation" who will be doing a complete analysis of India's strength's and weaknesses. Thank you everyone, and enjoy!
(applause and presentations go at a run - now it's finally Jai's foundation's turn)
JAI - For all those who don't know me, I'm Jai. Me, my high school friend Murali, and a couple of other mates from college are here as well. We are members of "Lite Foundation". You may have not heard about us on the news, but over the past seven years, apart from mainstream research, we've been helping regions around India with sanitation and resources issues.
Till date, we've managed to solve issues on hygiene and sanitation in places like Maharashtra and West Bengal. This was done by building more than 100 thousand toilets.
JAI - In summer seasons, when temperatures are simply unbearable, we've lent a hand to farmers in need in Telangana, Tamil Nadu, and even Punjab. We've donated money as well as helped enrole their children into schools and provide alternate seeds for farming.
JAI - But, that's not why I'm here today. By now, I'm sure most of you have an idea about our mission. Which is changing the lives of millions of Indians. Now we wanted to take this to the next level. As a child personally, I lived most of my life outside of India, in Hong Kong and Singapore. Upon coming back to live in my homeland, as NRI's, we were bombarded by countless problems. Before anyone tries to stop me from making further comments, let me further elaborate. When I meant problems, I meant even the smallest of tasks taking a hassle.
We rented out a wonderful pent house in Oshiwara. I won't mention to house owner's or the name of the property. But yes, it was a lovely apartment. Once we agreed to rent the place, the owners came in from Qatar to meet us. Now we thought, yes, that's very nice of them for doing so. Later on only, did we realize that they haven't maintained their place properly. Yes, this is a problem for many people. In our case, these owners haven't checked if the A/C conditions were proper, likewise whether or not the doorbell will catch fire if pressed continuously. So yes, this was quite a disappointment for us.
Why am I saying this to you all? I know some people are now thinking to themselves, "yes I experience the same problems too". Then there are others who are quite comfortable in the upper class so, "No problem". Then again, there are also people saying, "He's new to the country, so he's simply complaining". Yes, I am complaining. What you've got to understand is that I'm not so pessmistic about my homeland. I was actually very happy to come back. That was because of the rich diversity this country has. Leaving Singapore out of the picture, we have a homeland of those speaking many languages, split by many religions and cultures, food variety, everything. We're very diverse, and where ever you travel around this country, it is a good experience. It will be the same as leaving the country to travel else where, so-
JAI - But, yet again. Everything has it's pros and cons. India is a perfect place to be at this point of time, because places like Mumbai, are growing at a fast pace. Technology, access to internet and such, it's all happening at this point, which is why it's great to be in India at this point. I want to emphasize on what we're doing wrong. Let me give you an analogy, to make things crisp: we're giving more internet access, but hunger and water crisis is still on the rise. More international brands are coming in, but housing still becomes a problem with the growing population.
You're probably wondering why I'm picking my nose into the issues. Here's another analogy: as a parent, you won't know the rate at which your child is growing. It's only every once in year when you visit your other relatives, they say that the child has grown. How come the parents don't know that? Having living with their child since ages? it's the same here. We don't know our mistakes until someone else comes in and tells us. Being an NRI at that point, I wasn't completely Indian, because of my mannerisms and person at that time. Keeping that in mind, I was able to easily point out what was going well and what was not. I can very well tell right now that India is a much better place for family recreation, travel, and festivals compared to Singapore. In terms of development, we're dragging behind. My point is, we shouldn't be like Singapore. We should be growing at the style we like. In fact, places like Singapore look a lot like the west, and it's a problem because more expats are getting better jobs than the locals.
Moving on, what are the key problems of India? Well, the problems I'm going to discuss are the problems which are sort of padlocking this country's rate of development. Firstly, we have a brain drain. Brain Drain is this phenomena, when there are net movement of skilled workers migrating to developed countries for better opportunities. What's the burden? since more skilled people move off, the rich countries get richer, while we remain more poorer. If skilled software engineers are moving to the US, when can't replace their jobs in India unless there are skilled people like them. Eventually, they too might head over to places like the US. We have brilliant people in this country. Head of Google, Adobe, and Microsoft are Indians. Here's a joke I heard from a friend of mine in Canada - the Indians are good at stealing jobs abroad.
JAI - You see? that's our potential. We're intellect enough to steal jobs from abroad. Some interviews in foreign papers have stated that we as a country are a good supply of capital - in terms of intellect people. This