Let us first think about the change India needs.
India needs political leadership of the likes of Abraham Lincoln and Lee Kuan Yew. From that leadership will flow policy changes that we need as a country. The hard and soft foundations of a nation has to be engineered. The soft foundation encompasses national interest, the elimination of corruption, the elimination of artificially created divisions of castes and communities (which are today being used as ‘vote banks’), the creation of a truly modern education system, real economic, personal and political freedom, efficient markets, and so on.
The hard foundation is about infrastructure that will ensure the urbanisation of India: modern high-speed nationwide rail network, sufficient power generation capacity to meet the needs of an industrializing economy, ubiquitous affordable broadband access, efficient ports and airports, etc.
The hard and soft foundations will not only eliminate poverty but actually propel India to become a truly important participant in the global scene. To bring that about, India needs foresighted, intelligent, and dedicated leaders.
This kind political leadership exists in India. Such leaders are born once in a lifetime. India is fortunate to have a few such leaders. But they are not where they need to be.
Just to be clear: this leadership is not about photo-ops, but about getting things done. It is about working against the odds and delivering results. India has had many such leaders – but somehow they have been lost in the maze of cut-throat politics.
That is what Middle India’s change agents need to change. We need to ensure that these leaders can get to the top. We need to give them an environment for them to succeed. This is where the passionate few need to come together.