US vs India!

Hmmm… I have been thinking for a long time as to why do people decide to come to US from India? I talk to a lot of friends, acquaintances, etc who want to come to US and ask me for advice. And I can justify it with just one reason, the grass seems greener on the other side. When I went to Vancouver last year for my summer internship, I was kinda sure I’m not coming back. Because I missed India badly. The lab I was working in at SFU was good, I met good people and I was staying with my family. But something was amiss! Then I went back with the determination of not coming to North America for higher studies! I went and started with the final year project at PU. And the turn of events after that changed my decision. The lack of resources, the exploitation of a few intelligent hardworking people (I am not talking of myself here), the level of dissatisfaction amongst research fellows, all these factors convinced me that I need to come here. And here I am. I have been here for more than 3 months now… But something still seems amiss! Talking to one of my friends back in India today morning, I realised that most students coming to US or other ‘developed’ countries are no longer awed by things here. Most of them still long to go back. Probably, 10 years ago, the scenario was different. But today, India has almost every facility that you find here. People who used to come here 10 years ago, to study or work or setup a business, do not want to go back to India. They feel they have nothing to go back to. However, our generation feels the desire to go back. One of the reasons is the advancement that has taken place in the last decade. The economic reforms in the 1990s have changed India tremendously. We feel that we want to give back to our country. I think India has finally arrived.
BUT at the same time, some things need to be changed. In order to stop this brain drain, politics and hypocrisy at all levels needs to be removed. I hear shameful stories of leg pulling at India’s top research institutions and its depressing. Why is that students who want to opt for research careers long to come to States or other developed countries. There is only one reason. Here, they get intellectual independence and the freedom to work at the hours they want. They are not bound to sit in the lab till 8 in the night just because the professor expects them to. They work hard, but at their own convenience and give results. The contentment levels are higher, and so is the productivity. India really needs to learn a lesson here!

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