Watching television is now an ordeal. One hears a lot more noise than anything else. Whether it is news or current event shows, the media seems to be obsess over the death of an actor of the demolition of the office of the other and the consequent political drama that plays out. How much of this would shape our views and help in making the world better is anyone’s guess. But does it have to be this way? Were things better in the past? How will all this impact NGOs and the constructive work that they engage in? Can the space of development journalism and media advocacy be re-energized to help fashion a positive and vibrant society? What role do we as ordinary citizens play? All this and much more is what my article in this month’s special issue of Civil Society is all about. Read it here and the article is also below.
A development activist, public policy advocate, social innovator and leadership trainer
The recent Diwali festival saw the government of Karnataka vacillate between wanting to ban firecrackers and not wanting to ban it. Chief Minister Yeddyurappa initially announced that his government was considering a ban but went back on this a few days later. The expert committee for managing the COVID pandemic constituted by the Government used science and evidence to prevail and the Government finally issued ban orders against using the regular firecrackers but permitted the use of Green crackers. As with many other similar situations, the orders were neither here nor there. Seeing through this shoddy approach, the High Court
My first brush with being made to feel like a South Indian and distinctly different from the person in front of me is something that is strongly etched into my memory now. My father had insisted that all his children learn three languages at school – Kannada, the language of my state of Karnataka, English and Hindi (which he felt was our National language). We grew up with the pride that we could speak all three and did not consider that someday I would be looked down upon for speaking Hindi in a distinct south Indian accent. This incident happened
We live in a world of having a expert for all major human endeavours – from the mason to the medical specialist, from the masseuse to the manager…to the point where we have a special word called a Generalist even. The irony of the situation is that while on one hand the specialist and his role is celebrated, there exists a crisis of confidence in their expertise too. The current COVID crisis has not only challenged the specialist but has also exposed their inadequacies. For more about this, read my article titled, ‘Demystifying the Specialist’ in today’s Deccan Herald.