India is coming alive and flourishing economically. In fact, Citigroup estimates that by 2050, it will have the world’s largest economy, larger than China and the United States. For many centuries, only the politically connected and elite prospered in India, while the rest of the population lived in poverty. However, since 1991, 250 million people have been lifted out of poverty and are finding new ways to flex their personal and economic power.
In “India Awakes” noted Swedish author, commentator, and Cato Institute Senior Fellow Johan Norberg explores an inherited British bureaucracy which created layers of rules and regulations. However, globalization and economic liberalization have created fluidity between classes – and greater ambition. Norberg follows three individuals who are working to improve their lives, and in doing so, are breaking down the centuries old caste system.
Profile of Indian Entrepreneurs
Norberg follows three individuals who are working to improve their lives, and in the process, breaking down the centuries-old caste system.
– Banwari Lal Sharma, the president of a new street vendors association, is helping vendors in his area feel more empowered and able to stand up for their legal rights, after years of having to pay bribes to corrupt local officials.
– Rama Bhai, a Sagai village leader and farmer, comes from a group called the “forest people,” who were once viewed as trespassers on the land where they have lived for generations. Through an unusual use of GPS systems and Google Earth they have now obtained deeds to their land.
– Mannem Madhusudana Rao, who was born to one of the lowest rungs of India’s caste system, the “dalit,” was able to break free from the chains that have bound his societal position to a life of poverty. Through hard work and perseverance, Rao formed a major construction firm and has a much higher quality of life for himself and his extended family, along with a new status of “millionaire.”
“India Awakes” reveals the enormous power of unlocking human potential and ambition, and how doing so could establish this country as a preeminent world leader. “Within two decades India will have the largest population in the world, and another two decades later, it will have the world’s largest economy,” said Norberg. “What happens in India will have an effect on the world and on the US, and its triumphs and challenges also sheds new light on the policies we are pursuing back home.”
About Johan Norberg
International commentator Johan Norberg is an author, presenter and editor whose focus is globalization, entrepreneurship, and individual liberty. He is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute and authored several books exploring liberal themes, including his newest, Financial Fiasco: How America’s Infatuation with Homeownership and Easy Money Created the Economic Crisis. His book In Defense of Global Capitalism, originally published in Swedish in 2001, has since been published in over twenty different countries. Norberg’s articles and opinion pieces appear regularly in both Swedish and international newspapers, and he is a regular commentator and contributor on television and radio around the world discussing globalization and free trade.
About Free To Choose Media
Free To Choose Media produces thought-provoking public television programs and series, offering non-partisan, powerful stories that advocate for the well-being of every individual, as well as vibrant, fresh perspectives on a range of vital global and national issues. For more than 30 years, the Free To Choose production teams have traveled the world to explore topics such as the economic roots of the Arab Spring and the inspiring stories of entrepreneurs raising themselves and their communities out of poverty, and a look at how innovation and new technologies may be the answer to the world’s growing energy needs. Headquartered in Erie, PA, FTC Media is a television production initiative of Free To Choose Network, a global media company.
India Awakes Lecture Hosted at Cato Institute
Featuring Johan Norberg, Film host and Senior Fellow, Cato Institute; moderated by Ian Vasquez, Director, Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity, Cato Institute.
SOURCE: Free To Choose Media, IndiaAwakes.com, Cato Institute