Poverty is part of India’s story writes Peter Foster (Telegraph) in his blog that expands on his earlier article. I am in agreement with Foster on the apathy among well-to-do Indians although I think he makes some generalizations about middle class that are not necessarily true. His statements reflect his anger and passion and I certainly identify with it. He is absolutely right when he says
The first is that India’s poor are an unalterable fact of life. I’m reminded of the government health official who once told me that “these people don’t need toilets”.
This is a nasty manifestation of the caste system which still prevails in India and says that people are irrevocably bound to their lot. It is their ‘karma’, their place in life.
Well, I’m here unapologetically to tell you that it’s not – or at least it shouldn’t be. If India’s poor had toilets and clean water less of their children would die unnecessarily. The UN estimates that currently 500,000 Indians a year die from lack of clean water, which puts the recent floods in perspective.