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LG’s speech during Durgabai Deshmukh Memorial Function

Monday, July 15, 2013







15TH JULY, 2013


Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Dubey, President CSD, Prof. Thorat, my old friend and senior colleague, Dr. T. Haque, Director CSD, Mr. Sorab, President IIC, Madam Sharma, Director IIC. Before I say anything there is in this audience someone I think who has worked enormously for the cause of inclusive growth and who to my mind is a hero amongst us i.e. Heeraben. Madam, I thank you for being with us.

I am truly honoured that you gave me the opportunity to be here this evening and I just could not say no when I knew that Professor Thorat would be delivering this lecture, because he is someone for whom I have enormous respect, especially for the work he has done on Inclusive and Exclusive growth, on the cause of deprived sections of society and as we heard in the past forty five minutes, he has his own ways of delivering his point. I wanted to raise a philosophical issue, which is, is it not a shame in the 21st century that mankind should still be debating on issues of inclusive growth? I would presume that over hundred and hundred years of our existence, and our in-depth study of economies and philosophy, we should have known by now, that each one of us has an equal right of sustenance and growth and share of everything that is around us.

I think it was few hundred years before the birth of Christ that Socrates already spoke of equality and the concept of democracy in the Greek context and it is tragic because conflict in society emerged soon after, when his favourite disciple Plato spoke about different types of human beings. I think we have not been able to go past this issue and it is time we did.

Yesterday in an area in Delhi four young men went into a large pipe, not realizing that there was gas in the pipe. They didn’t escape and died, and that is the story that we encounter time and again in our country, across different parts of the world. What a sad state of affairs that in the most developed countries of the world, they still debate about providing basic healthcare to the poorest of the poor. Where is humanity failing? I truly believe that failure lies in the neglect of education or giving people a certain kind of education which prepares them only to get jobs; it does not prepare them for superior intellectual growth. We will continue to struggle, we will continue to struggle on religious lines, we will continue to struggle on caste lines, we will continue to blame the rich and the poor, we will continue to struggle with these issues if we do not address the fundamentals.

Thank you very much for giving me this opportunity of being with you, Prof Thorat, thank you very much for being with us and it is an honour to be here at the memorial lecture of this great personality. Thank you very much.





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