Wednesday, February 07, 2007

India Shining !! Agencies at Work !!

India shining , so nice to hear those words . As we get known around the world , a look within makes us realize that it is still a long way off till we show our real face than one behind a mask.

A few weeks ago we had a big digging program undertaken by the MGL for piped domestic gas.Their work got over and we are waiting excitedly for the gas to be lit in our kitchens.

Today morning at 3 o'clock the lights went off . The weather being very cool and pleasant , it really did not matter . At 6.00 when I looked out , I saw lights in the buildings around us . I had that restless thought that something is the matter with my house only and I would have to go hunting for an electrician . I then heard the watchman telling someone that the power had gone at 3 am and was restored at 6 am except to our wing . So I was not alone to sort out the problem . At 7.30 a few workers from the Maharashtra State Electricity Board [MSEB ] came and had a look around declaring that there was a cable fault and it would take some time . I then went to my clinic . At 12 noon my wife Shyamala called up , I presumed it must be that the power was restored and it was . On reaching home I had a talk with the workers who said that the MGL people had damaged the cable and they were setting it right . Again the power was shut on purpose and was finally restored at 3.00 pm. I must complement the MSEB for the reasonably ' quick work '

Now the title . Why can't India shine in these small things , we are as inefficient as always were . When the MGL came to dig they should have coordinated with the MSEB , to protect the underlying cables . This was on a small scale , the same happens when work goes on on the main trunks . We were left wondering that after power is restored it will be the turn of MGL to plug leaking pipes for which they will dig and the cycle repeats.

Now the MSEB work itself.I was horrified to see so many people gather to repair that I decided to click and also note down individual work assignment . There were about 3 wearing brown trousers--must be electricians and another 3 who probably were on contract to only dig. One person , not in brown trousers , was just standing watching the proceedings and waiting to contribute his skill . A pick up van made a few rounds to deliver some equipment and articles. When it stopped outside the gates a few people and the driver would come in to chat with their colleagues,have a hearty laugh and go away.

The actual work now. The diggers would start their work, 2 would dig in turns and the third would shovel the mud.The 3 brown trousered ones would sit in the shade talking , chewing betel leaf [ paan ] spit around , attend calls on the cell stretch their limbs and occasionally get up to inspect the digging . At one point the person standing on the sidelines got down in the trench and started twisting and pulling something.As I could not spot the details I presumed he had found the fault.The other 2 got up lazily from the shade,third brown pant was nowhere to be seen.They approached the trench and got in , the previous one made way for him.This one took some pieces of wire , shaved the edges and sat down . I could see just some pulling and twisting actions.The other brown pantwala probably was the overall boss.He did not participate in any activities , but was busy on his cellphone and spitting. Finally all were out of the trench and suddenly the lights were on in the house. The diggers then reversed the work and filled up the trench. Our watchman noticed me clicking photos from the balcony, and made me worry that if he told the workers they may feel offended and abandon the work.

I was wondering , that if this MGL and MSEB were private organisations , how would the work be done. 1 electrician,his assistant and 2 diggers would have sufficed and work would have taken less than 1/4 the time as MGL and MSEB would have coordinated the work. It is here that India should shine , work efficiently with bare essential staff, so no one is left lazying and spitting , in the shade of trees.

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