Does entrepreneurship and democracy go hand and hand in India? While India is touted as one of the world’s fastest-growing economies with “billions of entrepreneurs,” according to one author the ideals of entrepreneurship itself goes against the wheels of the country’s subjective democracy “where the caste system still rules the roost” of society.
In this week’s Economic Reform Feature Service Article, Chandrima Padmanabhan, the grand prize winner of CIPE’s 2012 International Youth Essay Competition, talks about the relationship between democracy and entrepreneurship in India in her provocatively titled essay “Entrepreneurship in India: The Evolution of the Pedestrian Pariah.”
Chandrima explains that the title of the essay is meant to reflect democratic and economic struggles that ordinary citizens, including aspiring entrepreneurs, face:
By pedestrian, I’m referring to every ‘undistinguished, ordinary’ person who walks our streets. And by pariah I meant ‘outcast’. About 60 per cent of India’s population is not so well to do. They walk the streets when they can, instead of using automobiles and they live in small houses, not high-rise apartments. But the India of today doesn’t cater to the masses. It caters to the rich and affluent.
By pedestrian pariah I highlight the common people of India who make the majority of the population but are still outcasts in every decision making/policy influencing scheme.
As a grand prize winner, Chandrima Padmanabhan will be attending CIPE’s upcoming Democracy that Delivers for Entrepreneurs conference April 9-10 in Chicago.