The Nielsen Company recently conducted a survey on the 60th year of Indian Independence. The survey was conducted using Nielsen India's online research panel ‘Your Voice’. The objective of this survey was to understand how people perceived India's growth over the last 60 years, as well as understand which areas need to be focussed on for future growth. The results showed that 89 per cent of the respondents wished to be reborn as an Indian if they were given a choice.
The key areas that respondents thought had improved in the past decades were business and commerce (57 per cent), science and technology (43 per cent), and education (19 per cent). However, only 15 per cent of the respondents thought that their quality of life in India had improved.
Among the list of ‘least progressed’ fields over the past decades of Independence, politics topped with 39 per cent, while 82 per cent of the respondents feel that corruption needs to be eradicated to improve politics, and about half out of them feel that uneducated politicians were the main reason for the dismal condition of Indian politics. Poverty eradication programme, and law and order formed the least progressed areas after politics.
A paltry one per cent of respondents thought India had progressed in sports, and more than 50 per cent of the respondents felt that political interference and inadequate sports infrastructure were the reasons for the poor performance of India in sports.
Path to success
Sixty five per cent of respondents felt that poverty eradication was the most important step to drive India's development in future. Infrastructure and transportation, along with improved law and order conditions, came close with 64 per cent of respondents having voted for it. About 62 per cent felt that the local education system needed to be uplifted if India had to reach the status of a developed country.
Impact of globalisation
Sixty three per cent of respondents thought that globalisation had been beneficial, while better employment opportunity was perceived to be the biggest benefit of globalisation. On the other hand, 78 per cent of the respondents thought that it would give them better opportunities in India as well as abroad. Over 60 per cent of the Indians surveyed felt that globalisation would provide greater exposure to new technologies, improve the standard of living and the state of infrastructure in the country.
Less than a quarter of the respondents see more harm from globalisation than benefit. The biggest concern for them is the harmful effect that globalisation will have on local industries. As many as 62 per cent of the respondents feel that local industries may perish due to globalisation, while about 60 percent think that globalisation will adversely impact farmers and agriculturists. Half the respondents (51 per cent) were more worried that globalisation will lead to loss of Indian values and culture.
“Globalisation will lead to greater exposure to other cultures, their customs and their ways of living. In an age of such wide reach of media, leading to higher levels of awareness of other cultures, it is a great task to prevent oneself from adopting new habits and customs if they are more appealing and suitable to one's living,” said NS Muthukumaran, Director-Measurement Science and Technical Training, The Nielsen Company, India.
What attracts Indians to India?
Fifty per cent of the people who were surveyed felt that the rich Indian culture was the most attractive factor for being proud to be an Indian.
Though patriotism was strong, 60 per cent of the respondents felt that Indians today were less patriotic than they were 10 years ago. Eleven per cent, who did not wished to be reborn as Indians, comprised mainly of youth aged between 15 to 24 years. “Young people today are more informed, curious about everything and are aggressive. It is not surprising that some would aspire to something new and different if they had a choice,” added Muthukumaran.