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For all those people blindly tolling the bells of progress in my country, Ramadoss serves as the "duh" reminder.
A very inept man, he represents everything that is a political stumbling block that hinders rapid progress of India. Not only does his existence have nothing positive to contribute to the nation, but he has also taken on a personal enmity with the Director of AIIMS, one of India's premier institutions to prove how low, demeaning and cheap his existence can be, and how much damage he could continually cause in a "democracy".
He has the full backing of Manmohan Singh, a man who, surprisingly enough, continues to fall in stature. Singh is only interested in keeping his party in power, which has naturally translated into an unabated freedom for Ramadoss to act like the veritable Bull in a China Shop.
This incident that appears more like a long drawn out battle in idiocy is a good example that highlights the weaknesses in India's democracy:
1. Just like the US Constitution, the Indian Constitution is weak in that parties in power can pass legislation that is fundamentally wrong - ethically, morally and legally. In India, the situation is worse, and continues to unravel despite an active Judiciary.
2. The caste systems that the British took advantage of have now become a weapon in the Indian Government's hands. This is something that can only contribute to some of the darkest pages of contemporary Indian History.
3. The Indian Press, and the force of public opinion is more or less a joke. While AIIMS continues to suffer through multiple strikes and government interventions, patients continue to suffer. The public has not taken a stand and has not represented its grievances against the situation.
4. Healthcare continues to be a very low priority issue in India.
5. Autonomy of institutions is also of very little concern to the Indian Government, the opposition, the press and the general public.
Given all these facts, and the very untenable situation created by parasitic ministers like Ramadoss, progress has a dim outlook in the Healthcare education and administration in India.
These facts are not factored in multiple assessments of the Indian Healthcare, Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices Industries.
It is indeed easy to fix a dollar amount X to any product/service unit, multiply it by a billion or a fraction thereof to come up with juicy numbers. This, however, does not represent the true market size of any industry in India.
Here are some very damaging scenarios that could play out in the presence of someone with as minimal intellectual capabilities as Ramadoss:
1. The quality of medical education can be diluted to the extent that Indian Doctors and Medical Institutions will lose their credibility and competitiveness in the world. This will severely hamper the future ability of India to fight off China and other emerging nations in terms of clinical trials, clinical research and related industries.
2. Irresponsible Healthcare Ministers can suspend or permanently stop clinical trials and research without logical reasons or explanations. It is very obvious where this will lead to.
3. Both 1 and 2, individually or collectively will also affect patient healthcare, both local and those coming in through medical tourism.
What India needs is responsible, educated ministers who need to be qualified for their portfolios. In the absence of such leadership, and in the presence of cretins like Ramadoss, all new and existing companies doing business in India within the healthcare or other frameworks will have to be very cautious and conservative in their approach and outlook.
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