Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Indian Middle Class

In any country, a society can be neatly divided into three main classes, mainly as per their financial status. The top class is the rich class which is a class by itself, absolutely unmoved and untouched no matter what happens to the economy of the country. This is because they can afford anything at any cost. This class is usually synonymous with the business class whose income seems to increase with every rise in prices. So, they are absolutely unconcerned with whatever happens to prices. The second class to whom also rise in prices and any turn of economy makes no difference. This is the poor class, and they will always remain so, no matter what happens to the economy. This class has resigned to their fate of being poor and remaining so forever.
The third class of society known as the middle class is the most important class of a society. This class comprises of the people who are neither rich nor poor. They are comfortably settled with all amenities but, they cannot squander money on frivolities. This class stays busy in maintaining a standard as they are the white collared gentry of the society.
In India also the three tier of society exist, and the rich and poor remain unruffled no matter what happens to the economy, as their financial status is sealed. It is the middle class that is seen struggling for an improvement in standard of living, and also maintain as far as possible the basic standard of character. In the last two decades the Indian middle class is seen struggling for maintenance of their standards, the price rise going sky high, the middle class is seen splitting into sections. Part of it which can leave behind scruples and tenets of character are seen joining the bandwagon of the rich. On the other hand, those who wish to maintain their classic characters cannot enter the fray and so, are left behind in the struggle. It is this specific category of the middle class that is, in India seen truly struggling for maintenance as, they are born and brought up to live well but, with the spiraling of prices they cannot afford to. It is this part of the society, a negligible portion who, should be the backbone of the society, is fighting daily bouts with everyone in every sphere of existence. This is the class which is basically honest and is the service class. This is the class that is also burdened with honest payment of all taxes, which all other categories manage to avoid. They are the ones who earn the least, are honest and are just the ones who pay all their dues to the state meticulously. Their image of white collar, has become too expensive to maintain and thus out of reach.
The middle class is not only struggling to maintain their financial status, it is this class alone that is also struggling to maintain at least a semblance of Indian culture, in the storm of Westernisation. Culturally also this is the only class seen maintaining some morals and values of the traditional Indian society. Together with morals comes religions outlook, and it is this fraction of the Indian society that is seen to be a little religious minded. This does not mean the celebration of religious festivals with pomp and show but, it is that they are still to some extent even today, upholding the great value of our religious leaders and books. The rich only show a religious bent of mind by only spending a lot of money on may be making of temples and donating a lot of money for havens etc. This is done by the rich only to become known to the masses and not because they are genuinely interested in the spread of religion and a religious way of life.
Thus it is the middle class only that maintains some semblance of decency and values in the country of rampant corruption and disharmony. However, this is the class, at least in India suffering the most and yet giving the true effect of a backbone to the crumbling country. If this sequence of decay of this section continues unabated, it will not be long before the class may get completely eliminated.

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