Beyond 'Charpaayi under Mango Tree'
A very friend of mine said that 'Bihar' draws a picture in her mind. A 'charpayee' under a mango tree, summer afternoon and a radio playing. A very true picture of what 'Bihar' once upon a time, used to be. That was probably years back when we used to read about different states in our social studies book or may be a story or two in our Hindi textbook. Then came a time when we used to dread with the thought of coming and staying here in Bihar. We used to hear about the stories of painful law and order situation. Last year, when I got posting in Patna, I was worried. I was in a dilemma; whether to come here or not. My parents, family members and friends were reluctant with the thought. But, none of them had actually stayed in Bihar. Whatever they said was their perception.
I searched out the internet and discovered that Patna has the highest per capita gross district domestic product in Bihar: Rs 31,441, which is better than the most of the metropolitan areas in India. Patna is the 21st-fastest growing city and urban area in the world and the 5th-fastest growing city in India. In June 2009, The World Bank ranked Patna as the second-best city in India to start a business, after Delhi. Where 'backward' Bihar leads India. I read about the rich history and heritage of Bihar. Vaishali, Nalanda, Rajgir, Ashoka the Great, Lord Buddha in Bodh Gaya, Vikramshila. The Land of Ustad Bismillah Khan, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Jayprakash Narayan, Rahul Sanskrityayan, Renu, Dinkar, Baba Nagarjun, Upamanyu Chatterjee. Even, Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay had spent some time in Bhagalpur.
Being from a field where I have to travel a lot, I could not resist myself. The opportunity to know and see the rich heritage and history so closely is not the one to be lost. Being India's one of the fastest growing state, I understood that law and order (the first and foremost necessity for growth) has improved manifolds in Bihar. I've been in this discovery since last 7 months.
Roads have improved a lot, as per the people who have been staying here since long. Infrastructure is in tremendous boom. Everywhere, one can see growth and opportunity. Bihar has moved beyond the charpayee under the mango tree image. Jharkhand has been a great loss to Bihar. In spite of that, Bihar is growing at a tremendous rate.
Its true that it has to grow further. But, with more population coming in from outside, the day doesn't seem very far when Bihar will be considered among the leading states of the nation. Bihar Govt. has special focus on Education and Healthcare. The curse of caste and dowry shall also fade away as the education level increases and inflow of population increases. With increasing opportunities of income, corruption should also decline. The NTPC thermal power plant in Barh, enhanced irrigation facilities in Koshi Belt will give a great boost to basic infrastructure of Bihar.
Though it has a long way to go, I believe that it'll re-establish its glory. The glory of The Magadh Empire, the glory of Nalanda, the glory of Vaishali and the glory of Bodh Gaya.
While we wait for the better, let me enjoy the Peraa and the Shudh Ghee!!!