India’s Impressive Growth is Happening One Citizen at a Time

India has been stealing the headlines in the last month. The success of Chandrayaan-3 in showing the world how to colonize the moon has shown the country in a light the world many have suspected, but never seen before. The fact that China’s Xi Jinping wouldn’t meet with Narendas Modi at the recent BRICS summit in South Africa? That says much for the country’s growing influence. But India’s impressive growth as a tech hub and economic powerhouse is most evident in its homes, on its street and in its offices. Simply, in its people.


Aadhaar is the name of a project initiated in 2009 for population identification. It had a stuttering start, becoming highly politicized and was very nearly scrapped. But today, Aadhaar stands as the most sophisticated ID program in the world. Now, 99.9% of Indian adults have a 12 digit ID that’s recognizable by fingerprints and/or iris scan. This enables them to open bank accounts easily in minutes and can be used to transfer government funds without skimming or corruption. This has been a notorious practice for a hundred years. Given the vast financial chasm that has separated Indians through the caste system, Aadhaar represents something of a people’s revolution, engineered by the government.


Through some brilliant financial planning that has levelled the playing field in connectivity, a mobile network called Jio has been able to put 700 million Indians onto the Internet. Let me repeat that. 700 million. In comparison, that means Indian’s data usage is bigger than the USA and China combined. The same corollary that connects African connectivity to African productivity could be used for India. But add steroids to that. Without wanting to generalise, Indians are the ultimate entrepreneurs.


There are 600 million people in India not contributing to the economy. Women. A tradition which has been in place right up until, well, yesterday, to keep women in what we’d now call a servile role in the home. That’s about to change. Why? Sentiment aside, the inclusion of women into Indian commerce will add $20 trillion to the economy within 25 years.

There are a few other factors contributing to India’s impressive growth, such as accelerated infrastructural construction, but the above three points best illustrate the commitment of the Indian government to create economic self-determination for all its people.

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