I am sorry. I am sorry that, we have yet another incident in Delhi, which was yet another attack on the sanity of mankind and which was yet another example of the growth pangs that we are facing here in India- where in the New India is still fighting with the Old Age India.
But, let me be very clear to you my friends in Africa, you are not alone, it is really unfortunate that one person lost his life and it should have never happened but to tell you the truth, it could have be any one of us. Yes, I said it right- It could even have been an Indian/ Bangladeshi/ American/ Chinese anyone who may have been unfortunate enough to come in the way of people who think law of the land is theirs to keep. It just happened to be a soul from Congo who was standing in their way that night and who became an unfortunate target for these people to prove that they were someone, maybe they were well connected and drunk on power they needed to prove that they had the first right to an auto rickshaw ride.
You see in our country, everyone who is someone needs to prove to others around him that he really is someone. It is like a jungle out there and if you are an animal in a jungle you need to understand your position in the food chain right? So, how does a deer know about his position in the food chain? Does anyone teaches that to him? No, right? It comes naturally to him, its like auto programmed in his mind. Similar is the case for majority of Indians like me who have no connections in power, no money to throw around and no caste connections to save him in time of crisis. We have understood our position in the food chain and if one of us would have encountered a similar kind of situation, we would have straight away let go of that auto rickshaw without even blinking an eye but then again I do not think, we would even dare to venture out in a city like Delhi on our own at 11.30 PM in night and this is Not because the whole city is unsafe but the chances of meeting some of these bad elements become higher in the night.
But, what I want to tell you is that, this is not an India specific problem, this is a problem for a majority of the developing world specially of my friends in Africa, Tell me how many of us will feel safe to venture out in a city like Lagos on our own after 7 in the evening? Kinshasa? Abuja? Juba? Even Nairobi? We and I mean all of us from developing countries face similar challenges where in the rule of law is hard to keep and follow by people drunk on power and I guess it is a part of our growth pangs where in a new order is still fighting the old one and it is nothing new. Sample this, New York City, supposedly one of the safest and most loved city in the world had a really bad crime problem in the 90’s . Read on here! It could take a very special effort on part of the city administration and politicians to get rid of the crime from the city.
Change will come around, it may take some time coming but I am sure it will come and this is what I want to focus on- Positives! Unfortunately we live in a world today in which media carries negative news 100 times faster than a positive news and it is easy to become negative after being bombarded with only negative news day in and day out. I have been asked but lot of my African students/friends/ parents/partners on how safe is Delhi? To them i say, Delhi is a safe as any other city around the world, yes there are some bad people but majority of people are a generation of Indians who are eager to make the city a better place to live in each day.
Our National Government, has put in place a huge emphasis on India-Africa relations which are growing at a rapid pace. We just organised a highly successful India Africa summit in New Delhi which was attended by Head of States of all African Countries. The people to people contact is on the rise with lot of Indian businesses now operating in Africa, lot of people from Africa traveling to India for quality and affordable healthcare, Education even tourism. India-Africa relation have only one way to go, which is UP!
It is highly unfortunate that one person had to loose his life and I am really sorry for that but please do not judge a whole country on the basis of few rotten apples in the system. We are really happy to work with our fellow Africans in developing world to shape a brighter future and look forward to have a stronger relation with our Friends in Africa.