I guess a week is over since I have been languishing in the bountiful lap of nature in Kerala and as I say it is one place that is disturbingly peaceful. You start so much of introspection that it gets to you after a certain point of time. Such is the peace here. The other day I was travelling in the bus when this thought of the ever clichéd unemployment aspect of the state stuck me. Kerala is notoriously famous for its high literacy rate (that is a farce anyways) and the unemployment despite the literacy. Gazing through all the natural bountifulness of the state one thing struck me, when I saw a couple of young guys sitting under a tree and smoking away their beedis.
It is said that necessity is the mother of all invention(there is something about all these adages, they might be clichéd but carry a certain level of truth).So that translates into the fact that if there is no necessity there will not be any forward thinking because one is comfortable in his/her own cocoon. Three things that stand out about Kerala any day would be the fish, rain and rice. If there is ever a word association exercise with Kerala these three would be the front runners I guess along with Strikes, communism and coconut probably. Now let’s look at the ideal Kerala family setting and I am not talking about the Kerala in cities(if there is any) where people haven’t seen a well. I am talking about the agrarian Kerala. Each home will have a comfortable number of coconut trees, banana trees, a well and rice would be their staple food any day along with fish. Even if they don’t work they can sell the coconuts, use coir, get coconut oil for normal chores, bananas for nutrition, rain is plenty in Kerala and hence the constant availability of water added with not that depleted water table. The land is fertile and hence there will be enough demand for land based factor work .Hence there is never a scarcity. Everything is readily available.
Everyone knows the story of Japanese resurgence after the world war when it was battling a tattered economy and lack of any natural resources. Let’s think of Indian states itself .Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Punjab etc .None of them are as blessed as Kerala, but then that constraint has allowed them to utilize each and every resource very well and utilize their human capital which harvests the natural resources than simply pluck the natural resources .Constraints are needed to perform at optimal level, the absence of which leads to under-utilization and below average capacity performance as there is no initiative to perform or let’s say perform that extra bit, same holds true for any aspect of life. Constraints have to be used not avoided.
Your environment makes you and hence when you have a tailor made environment, you never are motivated enough to look beyond the regular sources because the regular sources are a plenty. The peaceful environment makes one timid all the more and un- rebellious. The problem or the paradox is not that they are not using resources but using it all too often and at a pretty sustainable rate and to top all of that a communist ruled state .Ideal settings for the lackadaisical. It is not the problem of scarcity of resources but a paradox of a complete set of resources that curbs the man’s nomadic tendency to explore further. The irony of being blessed by all means and not having to struggle. Same goes for its twin sister West Bengal. Absolutely same microcosm .This my friends is the paradox of abundance .Survival might be guaranteed by natural resources but not prosperity, prosperity can be guaranteed only if there is proper human capital and technology involved with or without nature .When you stop resisting a major factor you tend to get shaped by that factor .So it’s not a surprising fact that people in Kerala have become complacent, comforting, unproductive, undemanding and over and above idle. If an idle mind is a devils workshop then it’s the ultimate parody that this place be called gods own country.