The print media and electronic media have spent hours at end and reams of papers to highlight the mess at the Commonwealth Games. The same people spent some more time on the enchanting opening ceremony. It was interesting to note that this had the familiar ring tones of the early nineties when the country's economy was in the doldrums followed by a spectacular rise to bring home the mortgaged gold as well as prepay some debts. The eerie feeling of a clampdown economically in the early seventies and the early part of this century was another reminder too. The common trait of both was the epicentre being Pokhran. Did not people predict the fall of the Railway monolith only to later be awed by its profitability?
Yes the Indian seismograph always means a quake is followed by a grand event. A crisis always precedes a successful endeavour. These musings only reminded me of a tale oft quoted by my friend. According to him, an American, a Japanese and an Indian represented by the legendary Sardar were being interviewed for handing over a project. After a lot of minute details being spelt out by the panel, the American sought two years to complete the project with costs in US dollars of course!!! The Japanese twittered his fingers shrinked his nostrils made airy calculations and spelt out a time of an year to complete the project at half the cost to be paid in Japanese yen. The panel had decided that the contract would be bagged by the Japanese but for ethical considerations placed the facts before the Sardar. Imagine the expressions on the face of the panel members when the Sardar posed a question instead of responding with a time frame. His answer was " What is the deadline and what is your budget?" The panel members after regaining composure queried the Sardar what he meant by this response. The Sardar non chalantly replied we Indians gear up once a deadline is nearing and can give you the same for any budget that suits you. The quality would vary according to your budget that's all.
The contract was bagged by the Sardar for two months with a shoe string budget. At the end of one month nothing had commenced. At the end of another fortnight work was picking pace. Soon the panel members hiked the budget but would not waive the time line. The contract was executed to perfection in Indian Rupees which was much lesser than any other budget. Yes given a crisis we outperform anyone.
Anyone disagreeing please reminiscence a marriage scene - if everything is fine then a crisis is created to instil the thrill but imagine the scene of a tragedy the crisis is already there and the best comes out. We have now again exhibited this trait and soon we will do so by hosting the Olympics.