Rich yet poor

Ever since the fuel crisis began, our family has a set of protocols to be followed to reach to our offices during the weekdays. We - the four of us in our family - move out to a certain junction on our car where dad drops us and moves, and we leap towards our respective destiny on foot. Later in the evening, we set the time to gather somewhere and are lifted by dad to return home.

A few days back while we were travelling together as usual, a discussion about the country’s current scenario began. We were stuck on traffic at one of the junctions on our way to the workplace. “A traffic jam during a severe fuel crisis! Look at our country.”, said my mom. In reply I told that we all are a part of same sinking cruise, and having no other option. Dad, then, spoke about his experience of his visit to one of the African nations – Ethiopia, and the country’s situation seemed somewhat similar to ours.

In Ethiopia, while the people seemed to be rich, the country seemed poor. As per dad, the facilities provided by the state were no good; whereas, the people (mostly in the cities) seemed well-off with large houses to live in, cars to travel and had an extravagant expenditure pattern. Obviously, as in all the countries in the globe, the income and expenditure equality might not exist over there too, yet dad was surprised to see the plight of the state while the general public seemed to be doing fine. Doesn’t this sound similar to our place?

In this severe fuel crisis many of us are desperately to keep up with our daily chores and livelihood. Let leave the fuel crisis, many of us have been able to afford motorbikes and cars paying huge sum of money where the country has the highest import duty on the vehicles in the world. Simple mobile phones are rarely seen in anyone’s hand - expensive smart phones we own! We have sleek and shiny cars but no fuel, no good road and no proper street lights. We own expensive smart phones, yet neither do we have the power to charge the battery nor have a proper network coverage throughout the country. Isn’t our state failing? Isn’t the country turning poor and weaker year after year, and the citizens turning rich?

Yes, it’s good for a country to have an improving standard of living. However, I argue for a view that the basic facilities provided by the state will also develop at a similar pace. Only then does the country develop, only then can it be called a healthy development.