The election to the 650-strong House of Commons in Westminster, London — the mother of all parliaments — of 15 Indian-origin MPs has been widely welcomed in the domestic media as a signal triumph for India. While it is undoubtedly a great achievement for Indian emigrants whose parents were ruled and kicked about by our erstwhile British masters, aka Red Devils, in this country less than 75 years ago and to this day are often subjected to racial abuse and discrimination in the UK, to have overcome the odds to be elected to Britain’s venerated House of Commons, the obverse side of the coin is that it’s also reflective of a continuous brain drain — flight of the brightest and most enterprising Indian minds to Western countries, especially to the UK and US.
Curiously there is no public anger or social opprobrium of emigrants, educated at public expense and fleeing abroad instead of giving back to the nation and society. On the contrary, every other member of India’s elite clubs unashamedly boasts of sons and nephews serving abroad. Why, even the progeny of several presidents and prime ministers — who one presumes would have every door open for them — prefer serving abroad than at home. During the past six years, 23,000 dollar-millionaires from India have emigrated to Western countries.
The deadly combination of a neta-babu brotherhood which makes life unbearable for educated self-respecting citizens and a fickle, materialistic middle class is forcing a brain drain from India. The entry of a record number of Indians into Britain’s parliament is not an occasion for celebration, but lamentation.