I would like greater emphasis on alternative energy sources like solar, water and wind power. Let us look at different ways to plan our cities and buildings so as to minimise energy waste and build communities in balance and harmony with nature.
As an agricultural country, we are particularly vulnerable to climate change. Yet, it is India that is blocking Climate Change negotiations demanding that we (with over one billion people) must first be allowed to achieve the levels of consumerism of the West before we can be asked to reform. The question to be asked is, what’s the use of a fancy house or hotel when you don’t have a planet left to put it??. Climate change is an impending reality and potentially disastrous for an agricultural country like India. It is the poor of the world that will be worst affected which is why environmental protection is not a luxury but a necessity.
One of the most important challenges in health reform is to design workable systems for rural idea. Given the discrepancy in earnings between private and public medical practitioners, how do we deliver competent healthcare in villages? Primary health centres in West Bengal, Orissa and Bihar cope with less than 20 per cent of the allocated staff. One way might be to strengthen local systems of medicine, like ayurveda and homeopathy. Gujarat has tackled the problem through improved connectivity, creating an ambulance service that responds within half an hour to take villagers to medical help. What I would like to see is a programme of health education targeted at women, designed to prevent diseases like malaria, TB and diabetes, that are needlessly killing us. Medical infrastructure must be provided at the district level so as to reduce the crush of patients in cities. I would like to see an increased emphasis on prevention alongside cure.