Circa WWII,Adolf Hitler is reported to have said " give me German artillery, British officers and Indian soldiers and I can win any war".
Today, to guarantee a victory, you need Italian styling, American markets,German durability,British marketing and Indian manufacturing.
More than 60 years later, India has not yet graduated from providing exceptional foot-soldiers to the world. It is helping the world win its wars. All wars, except its own. India is content in basking in reflected glory. Achievements of people of Indian origin, irrespective of their current nationality, makes us happy.
The world's leading apparel brands are made in India but not marketed by India. Some of the finest software is coded in India by not marketed under an Indian brand. India's BPO sector and IT sectors provides the world its foot soldiers lead by British officers and American Generals.
However, "the times they are a-changin'" . There are several indicators which leads me to believe that the world is gradually turning into India's Oyster.
Let's take sports:
* India is the T20 World Cup champion.
* Franchisees of the Indian Premier League and Indian Cricket League have
"bought" several foreign players. It is prestigious as well as lucrative
for foreign players to sign up for Indian franchisees.
* India is world no.2 in One Day International cricket rankings.
* India is world no. 3 in Test cricket.
* There are 5 Indians in Wisden's Dream Test XI.The captain is MS Dhoni.
* Vishwanathan Anand is the world's highest ranking chess player
* Koneru Humpy is the winner of the Women's Grand Prix in March,2009
* Pankaj Advani is the IBSF World Billiards Champion
* Abhinav Bindra is the Olympics and World Champion for the 10 m Air Rifle event.
* India has Asia's best hockey team.They won the Azlan Shah cup in April,2009
Cut to business. India's business is decidedly going global:
* Tata' Motors acquisition of JLR
* Tata Tea's (world's second largest tea company) acquisition of Tetley,Glaceau
(which was later sold to Coca Cola)
* HCL's acquisition of Axon Group Plc
* Hindalco's buying Novellis for $6 billion
* Suzlon acquisition of Hansen Transmission for over $ 677 million
* Videocon buying of Daewoo Electronics for $ 1 billion
* ONGC snapping Ominex de Columbia
Of course, this list is not even a partial list of the acquisitions by Indian companies. Nor does it reflect deals in the pipeline.Reverse colonization has now begun!
* ISRO put 10 satellites into orbit in a single launch - a world record. The earlier
record was 8 satellites launched simultaneously.
* We have the 2nd largest number of nuclear power plants under construction
* Over a 100 global corporations have their R&D center in India.
* With the help of Indian science, we have become the world's largest food producer
* Research is being done in the fields of superconductivity,nanotechnology and Fast Breeder Reactors.
* An indigenous Light Combat Aircraft is only a few years away.
Other achievements? Here goes:
* We are the world's largest democracy.
* We have won the Miss World pageant most times - 5
* Largest billionaire population in Asia - 42
* Second fastest growing economy in the world, after China
* Largest contributor to the UN Peacekeeping force - 55,000
* World's second largest producer of cinema
Look around you. Ignore newspaper headlines which thrive on bad news. The good news is tucked away in the inner pages. More importantly, there is a sense of achievement all around us.
Already, there are Indian Major Generals and Lt.Generals in the war against recession.The time when the world will be lead by Indian Generals is not far away.
Recognize the signs.Celebrate it.