Author: Pavan K Varma
ISBN/UPC (if available): 067088894X
A timely and invaluable book that provides middle-class Indians with the rationale and the tools to help them evolve from being mere residents to responsible citizens.
India is home to the largest middle class in the world. It is also the country with the largest number of the world's poor (over 600 million), where 290 million people can neither read nor write and a child dies every three minutes of something as easily curable as diarrhea. These are statistics that most middle-class Indians prefer to ignore, especially in post-liberalization India.
In this first-of-its-kind book, Pavan K Varma, author of the best-selling The Great Indian Middle Class, teams up with journalist Renuka Khandekar to show us how ruinous this apathy is and why and how the middle class should engage in the process of national development. Among the problems and possible solutions that they deal with are:
* Inefficiency and callousness in public institutions and what we must do to make them more accountable
* How to fight corruption and injustice through the judicial system and the press
* How small acts of involvement - like making one person functionally literate - can make a difference.
* How to support or link up with existing non-government organizations to set up one ourselves.
In addition to a list of practical things we can do to ensure a more civil, humane and caring society, the authors give us inspiring profiles of ordinary people who have made a difference.
A member of the Indian Foreign Service, Pavan K Varma has been posted in Bulgaria, Romania, Russia and in New York, at the Indian Mission to the United Nations. He has been Press Secretary to the President of India and is currently joint Secretary, Africa in the Ministry of External Affairs. Besides the best-selling The Great Indian Middle Class, he is author of Ghalib: The Man, The Times and Krishna: The playful Divine. Pavan Varma lives in Delhi with his wife, two daughters and a son.
Renuka Khandekar writes for print and television. She is currently the National Supplements Editor of the Indian Express. She lives in Delhi and Bombay.