TODAY -

Double drain in NE states is a big economy bummer...!!!

Boilal Gangte *



(Disclaimer - This piece is a hypothesis of the writer emanating from his conjectures, parallels, observations and experiences and hence should not be construed otherwise)

Brain drain was a much hyped topic in India before subprime meltdown. Yes, it's a debilitating phenomenon for any economy. I mean, which mother would want her productive offspring to move out and start helping other houses when there is so much work left at home? Why should a motherland be deprived of the best fruits produced by her produce?

Indeed!!! Greed took the better off the west; consumers try to satiate their unsatisfying needs and went on acquiring spree using money they don't own. Corporate wise men manufacture fictitious products/papers and sell to other corporate wise men, for a common interest of fat paychecks and bonuses. The end we saw was toxic... Lehman Brothers went kaput, Freddie and Fannie couldn't take it any longer, bail-out entered corporate dictionary and bankruptcy became a commodity. So much so, even Madhuri & Co. has to come back as the supposedly greener pastures turned dry and pale. Consequently the drainers don't want our brain anymore, they can't afford to splurge money on imported brains and hence the brain drain debate faded.

India received about $58 billion in global remittances in 2011 which was the highest for any country, followed by China at $57 billion. India has been number one global remitter for the past 4 years. $58 billion in a year by any economy standard is a hell lot of money to be siphoned off from your land. Hence it seems fair enough to say, they drain our brain and we drain their wealth...So much of the brain drain debate, after all we gain their wealth!!!

The North Easter states have been grappling with this problem for very long time now. However the situation though intra in nature, but is with much severity because the draining happens from both sides.

  • Brain drain because the best of people went for further studies and have to adopt mainland as their base due to career prospect and then they continue for posterity as well.
  • Wealth drain because money is hardly remitted back. Families send lots of their hard earn money during education, however the ripen incumbents hardly send back their wealth because they kind of adopt mainland as their pseudo home.
Why Brain Drain?

Brain drain phenomenon is due to systemic incongruence because the land doesn't offer opportunity even if all those brains want to come back and pursue a career. There is hardly any pasture to graze on except for some trickling government jobs, which in itself doesn't believe too much in brain (minus few exceptions). Except for Guwahati, there is hardly any town or capital state which can be referred as city, where there is a buzzing economic activity where people can build their careers.

Let's try to back it up by deep diving into the various possible career fields:
  • Corporate career - For people committing to the corporate world, there is hardly any forward looking opportunity even if he/she wants to stay back. Our biggest city, Guwahati maybe the only options and even this can accommodate to a limited level. With the exception of maybe sales or in SBU structure, one can't grow because there is hardly any position as you move up the corporate ladder.
  • Professional field - There are few markets where you can web your expertise for a living. Take an engineer, chartered accountants, lawyers, catering field, IT world, music, sports, any creative field, etc. the scale of operation can't exceed more than next door "mom and pops" level.
  • Entrepreneurship - Apart from the small market for tapping, the land doesn't have good source of funds for throwing up seed capitals. Hence, it doesn't provide good incubation environment, which is fundamental for people to take start-up seriously.
  • Even in the government job, except for the state government undertakings, there are higher chances that you may land up in other states because you have more vacancies outside.
How wealth drain?

Wealth drain is a big cause of concern for any economy because it depletes the economy. And in an economy like NE which is not self-sustaining and is dependent on limited fund infused by the central, this phenomenon is more aggravating. An imbalance in Net Flow (incoming money v/s outgoing money) results in economy shrinking, which is lethal for economic growth.

The reasons for wealth drain are structural in nature because the socio-economic and political set-up doesn't induce individuals for retention of wealth in the land. There are two main phenomena which contribute heavily to this:

0 Exodus to mainland syndrome:

Because the land doesn't have good and qualified institutions to promise students for bright prospects, hence parents (who can afford) tend to send their kids to study in mainland institutions. Moreover, the land is infested with much unrest in the forms of bandh (which rarely "not-happen") and security issues. To add to it, there are indigenous cultural issues which block the confidence of parents to let children stuck up in this uncertain environment.

And of the total people who have been exported to mainland, most of them continues their career and would also want his/her children to continue. Though NE people by heart will always be NE, but career and future prospects have bound them to mainland and hence it became their adopted house (if not home). Even if some goes back, they will let their children follow the same path and the cycle continues. A pictorial representation is given below -

Double drain in NE states is a big economy bummer...!!!



While the above pictorial representation doesn't capture the entire pragmatic nuances, but the core point is that the number of people going back tapers down with generations.

o Lack of money retention in the economy by the trade:

Being deprived of anchor industries (with some exceptions) the main economic activities in North Easter states continues to be subsistence agricultural and the local trading industry. While the mom and pop retail outlets may be run mostly by the locals, however the supply chain is heavily controlled by people from mainland. Except for the required working capitals, the remaining money generated by these tradesmen are remitted back to their natives and hence the land doesn't really get that reinvestment which is needed for economic development. Apart from the fact that we Indians by nature are remitters, the land also doesn't induce them to invest because -

  • The return on investment is not as attractive as it is in mainland.
  • The land still has some sort of primitive xenophobia and hence doesn't really give the needed confidence to those rich tradesmen to reinvest.
Which is the cause and which is the effect will be as cryptic as a kryptonite. However, this is a reality and a grappling bummer for the economic development. Someone needs to bite the bullet to initiate the kick start. As one of my seniors rightly said in our casual conversations, the land needs a strong political will to break all those shackles. Therefore, irrespective of what names we called them, we do need our politicians to act and we need those actions very fast.


* Boilal Gangte (Boi) wrote this article for e-pao.net
The author works for Idea Cellular as Marketing Head for Assam and NE. He is a management graduate from IIM, Bangalore and a commerce graduate from SRCC, Delhi. He can be reached at boilalpg(at)gmail(dot)com
This article was posted on October 24, 2012.



* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.


LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Singda Dam, picnicking spot : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 07 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • COVID-19 : Impact in Manipur :: News Timeline
  • NSU Manipur & Russian Univ signed MoU
  • Pesticides- Some of its harmful effects
  • Acid attack: A vicious assault
  • Condemnation on killing at Oting
  • Mon firing stokes demand for AFSPA scrap
  • From RIMS to Malom to now Mon
  • Book fair @ Manipur Univ #2: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 06 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • Candlelight vigil at Delhi
  • Pony, polo & Om Shanti
  • Program on Gender Based Violence
  • Students interaction program with Scientists
  • Beauty in times of pollutions
  • Shocker from 'friends of northeast people'
  • Wanted: A strong Opposition
  • Drug Menace in Manipur #1
  • The first CM to visit the remotest village
  • Condemns Oting killings
  • Condemns killing of civilians in Nagaland
  • Choose wisely :: Poem
  • We must collectively defeat the new variant
  • Aim for quality service not AIIMS status
  • Beyond the flag & Constitution demand
  • Manipur independence & Merger Agreement
  • COVID-19 Status 04 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • Farmers training at IBSD, Imphal
  • The enemy of the mighty :: Poem
  • Scientific nursery raising of vegetable crops
  • Votes and economic forces
  • Ningol Chakkouba @Thanga #1: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 03 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • Intl Day of Persons with Disabilities
  • Seminar : Bioeconomy from Bioresources
  • COVID-19 and antibiotic resistance
  • A passion for teaching science
  • Ticket allotment toughest challenge for BJP
  • UAPA arrests, AFSPA & improved law & order
  • Strategies to improve piggery sector
  • COVID-19 Status 02 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • Beauty lies within you :: Poem
  • Panti Neimei : Prayer for longevity
  • Manager @ KIIT TBI Bhubaneswar
  • Careers in IoT (Internet of Things)
  • Omicron the new avatar of coronavirus
  • Omicron variant scare amid aura of normalcy
  • Book fair @ Manipur Univ #1: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 01 Dec : Govt of Manipur
  • Why 680,000 AIDS deaths in 2020?
  • 'forward Ethnographic report on Meeitei'
  • Gust of wind :: Poem
  • Political leaders & their credibilities
  • World Heritage Sites in India
  • CM's barb on Imphal centric tribal MLAs
  • Inclusive Manipur: A cure for myriad maladies
  • Cosmos Festival @Maram #3: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 30 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • DM University: Place of Hopes or Nothing
  • Protest for ST list at Guwahati
  • Choosing the right candidates
  • Drone warfare
  • MU in limelight for wrong reason
  • Time to review development initiatives
  • Let's Make a Difference: Girl Up Khonjel
  • COVID-19 Status 29 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • December Calendar for Year 2021 : Tools
  • Demands extension of Ishan Uday deadline
  • 'Name of Bailey Bridge at Tipaimukh wrong'
  • My lovely mother :: Poem
  • Election in March first week ?
  • Lesson to learn from JCILPS' drive
  • ILP System needs dedicated staff
  • Traditional Fishing Equipment : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 28 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Protest for ST list at Delhi
  • Pendraba Khunnaigi Meiri :: Play review
  • The days of yore :: Poem
  • Farmers suitable technique of composting
  • Threat from new variant
  • Landlocked NE needs better connectivity
  • Meetei Leikai @ Silchar #2: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 27 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Antimicrobial resistance is threatening health
  • The Unified Nation :: Poem
  • Manipur Polls 2022: All roads lead to BJP
  • Economic governance; need for Manipur
  • Celebrate festival with Covid protocol
  • COVID-19 Status 26 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2021 #5: Gallery
  • Constitution Day at Lilong
  • Constitution Day at Lamphel Court
  • Applicants : Manipur Entrepreneurs Society
  • Executive Committee posts for YMC
  • Transgenders : Struggling for identity
  • Anthelmintic resistance: Havoc to veterinary
  • Signing pacts hallmark policy to delay stir
  • Paddy land conservation
  • Jiribam Keithel [Sept 2021] #1 : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 25 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Time heals
  • Manipur women : Champions Sepak Takraw
  • TEDxYouth@RonaldsayRoad at Agartala
  • Tips to make nail paint last longer
  • Health Min data exposes Govt inefficiency
  • Leaving out Manipur from the loop?
  • RIMS, Lamphel, Imphal #2 : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 24 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • COVID-19 Status 23 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Activism Against Gender based Violence
  • National Lok Adalat at Lamphel
  • MPSC cleaning by LAC
  • Hope - the essence of life
  • Students Induction Programme at Lilong
  • Ending cash-for-vote trend a pipedream
  • Pluralistic Manipur & divergent forces
  • Remembering Guru Gourkishwor Sharma
  • Training on mushroom cultivation : Gallery
  • What if TB, HIV medicines stop working?
  • NPF Women Wing Co-ordination meeting
  • World Children's Day
  • Pure passion :: Poem
  • Emergence of NPP in region's politics
  • Taking NE on board
  • Trekking @ Mount Koubru #2 : Gallery
  • Healthcare not handcuffs
  • Asymmetrical Federalism in North-East
  • Dr Konica Khuraijam- Best Educator-2021
  • Webinar : Relations betn India &SE Asia
  • Career as a Product Manager
  • Starting & ending with economic blockade!
  • ST : Renewed campaign & Govt's silence
  • Exposure visit to Kwatha by MTU
  • COVID-19 Status 21 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Sustainable Development at Noney
  • Nine Hills One Valley : World premier
  • Rs 3,30,000/- as assistance to journalists
  • Taj by night!
  • Boost for local handloom & handicraft
  • Drug smuggling from/through Manipur
  • Ningol Chakouba Shopping #2 : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 20 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • 'AirOThon' for Manipur & Sikkim
  • Environment & antimicrobial resistance
  • A lone night traveller :: Poem
  • Central Govt finally bows to kisans
  • Mera Houchongba @ Kangla #3 : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 19 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Improving public transport will reduce pollution
  • Nutrition- Tool for resilience in COVID
  • Take a relook at NEET
  • Glorifying toothless ILP system in state
  • Lapses in ILPS: Complete let-down
  • Cultural Fest @Changangei #2: Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 18 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Child Development Manager @ MaolKeki
  • Irujdn hEbi tEbi lMdM :: Seireng
  • The Killing Fields (2013-21) :: News Timeline
  • Is "to be like a girl" an insult?
  • Aloe vera for acne
  • Elections: Plentiful issues, solution minimal
  • Flawed education system & private tuition
  • National Press Day @DIPR : Gallery
  • Book review of Ikigai
  • Free Filmmaking Workshop at Guwahati
  • World Piles Day Colorectal Cancer
  • Diwali with a void
  • Heartache for loyal BJP ticket seekers
  • MPSC: Time for complete overhaul
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Delhi : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 16 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Erol Meerol Eigi Choirol
  • Ningol Chakouba organized at Delhi
  • The bare truth-the only truth :: Poem
  • Scientific freshwater prawn culture in NE
  • Equal footing for tribal population
  • Violence and conflict situation
  • Did Tribes Fight for Freedom of our Nation
  • COVID-19 Status 15 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Consultation: Protection of Rivers, Leimatak
  • Dr Naorem Bidyasagar- Bal Sahitya Puraskar
  • World Diabetes Day 2021
  • Padma awards now are more peoples' award
  • Bloodshed amid peace in state narrative
  • NE & Delhi: Bridging policy disconnect
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Thanga : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 14 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Nupana Khutlingba Samajda 'Nupa'
  • Through Her Eyes : Peace Festival of NE
  • Webinar on US Medical Licensing Exam
  • GMOs, is it a Yes or No?
  • Sobbing in solitude
  • Lesson learnt from ABP News-Cvoter survey
  • Glasgow Climate Pact, a step forward?
  • Ningol Chakkouba: origin & significance
  • COVID-19 Status 13 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Exhibition on Judicial Establishments
  • My namesake
  • Kidney patient must take fistula seriously
  • What to see & what to do at Kangla Fort
  • COVID-19 Status 12 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Meetei tribe bears more tribal characters..
  • Scholarship payment for OBC & SC students
  • Do you know ? :: Poem
  • COVAXIN data published in The Lancet
  • Disturbing vaccine hesitancy trend
  • Chinese village in Arunachal Pradesh
  • Online Teaching in a Pandemic World
  • COVID-19 Status 11 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • State Level Moot-Court Competition
  • Ecological task force in Manipur #2
  • Makeup Competition - Lumiere 2021
  • Essential winter skin care tips
  • Inadequacy of women in decision making
  • Election under the shadow of Covid
  • Ningol Chakouba Shopping #1 : Gallery
  • COVID-19 Status 10 Nov : Govt of Manipur
  • Legal Services / Commendation Ceremony
  • Handloom & Handicraft of NE in Kolkata
  • Upcoming election: View on social auditing
  • Organic Farming
  • Task cut out for school, college
  • Rise of drug mafias: An impending challenge
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Itanagar : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakouba @ Pune : Gallery
  • Ching-Tam Ningol Chakouba : Gallery
  • Ningol Chakouba Fish Fair : Gallery
  • Kang Tournament @Pishum #2 : Gallery
  • Kwak Tanba @Sana Konung #3 : Gallery
  • Loktak & Imphal Valley Landscape: Gallery
  • Mera Houchongba @ Kangla #2 : Gallery
  • ZMlgdr AEKoIn :: Seireng
  • Bor khoiramnaba @Hiyangthang #3 : Gallery
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Mera Houchongba @ Kangla #1 : Gallery
  • Abonmai: Shutdown- 4 Oct #3: Gallery
  • Bishwamitra Chongtham - Boxing: Gallery
  • Saikhom Mirabai: Olympics #2: Gallery
  • Manipur Olympians reception : Gallery
  • Mary Kom reception- Aug 20: Gallery
  • Hijam Gourashyam : Manipur Sahitya
  • Sushila Likmabam reception- Aug 18: Gallery
  • S Nilakanta / P Sushila [Aug 11] #2 : Gallery
  • S Nilakanta / P Sushila [Aug 11] #1 : Gallery
  • Mirabai felicitated truck drivers: Gallery
  • Saikhom Mirabai @Imphal #3: Gallery
  • Saikhom Mirabai @Imphal #2: Gallery
  • Saikhom Mirabai @ Kakching: Gallery
  • Shanglakpam Nilakanta: Olympics #2: Gallery
  • Sushila Pukhrambam :: Olympics : Gallery
  • Saikhom Mirabai : Tokyo Olympics 2020
  • Pukhrambam Sushila : Tokyo Olympics Dream
  • Sushila Likmabam: Olympics Dream: Gallery
  • SPONSORED ADS