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|February 27, 1998||
'My biggest hope is the youth of this country'
Gautam Solanki, 67, retired school teacher, Rajkot
Till I was 50, I used to tell my students to have confidence in our leaders. Of course, by leaders I meant men like Gandhiji, Nehru, Sardar Patel and others. But some of my smart students would, after reading about political scandals in newspapers, ask me if I was serious about what I was preaching. And, believe me, I was often at a loss to reply to their queries with regard to our modern leaders.
I am sorry to say, but I am totally disillusioned about the leaders who are the so-called guardians of our country. My belief that there is no honest leader left in this country is getting stronger every day. Mistaking them for good people, I had expected a lot of things from our various leaders. But theirs is the most selfish of all tribes. It is a pity a country like India is being run by them.
Why can't our respected leaders perform their duties sincerely? Why can't they show any sign of being serious about the development of this country and its poor inhabitants? The more I think about this, the more disappointed I become.
As a teenager, I had participated in the struggle for freedom. How we dreamt of a free and flourishing India! Unfortunately, that cherished dream has been long shattered thanks to our subsequent politicians. Some of our leaders are such that I will be not surprised if they sell this country for their personal gain.
My biggest hope is the youth of this country. I am absolutely sure that when they decide to do something, nobody can stop them. Only they can recreate India's glory. I know that certain powerful forces will definitely try to curb them. But if you are determined to do something collectively, you'll definitely succeed. As the saying goes, united you stand, divided you fall.
As told to Haresh Pandya
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