- Honest Officer
- 11 years ago
- 2710 views
Well, I am one of those "NRI"s who visit home every once in a while - sick and tired of other "NRI"s pompous attitudes about India. During this recent trip, I was warned of the horrific experience I would have to endure with Indian customs. I thought I will cross the bridge when I come to it.
So I landed in Chennai. I had stuff with me but well under the guidelines for import. The customs officer asked me if I had any items to declare - I explained what I had. He asked me the approximate value and I said about Rs. 23,000. He smiled and wished me a pleasant stay. End of discussion.
Now as I was walking away I paused to reflect on this incident. Doing so I looked back at the customs officer - in the span of about 5-1 minutes while I was standing there, about 25-30 passengers passed by - some with wrapped cartons. He, or the group of customs officers, did not stop anyone nor did they collect money from anyone. Myth 1 busted.
Then I went to the Chennai RTO to get my Indian DL renewed. Easy peasy. No bribes. Wasnt even asked for it.
I have returned now. An Indian with an even greater sense of pride.
I know we have scams/scandals et al. While I dont defend them, I also ask myself if any country is free of them. In the U.S, we have legalized corruption - LOBBYING. Japan, one of the richest countries, is plagued by it. Israel has lost more premiers to corruption than any other advanced nation.
While I would love to see my country without corruption, I also know it is an utopian situation. Not because we are Indian. It is indeed the way the cookie crumbles. I for one, wont pay a bribe if asked for it - be it in India or anywhere in the world!
P.S: I am tempted to leave a note for pompous NRIs. We are not doing India a favor by being NRIs. We are not investing in India because of patriotic fervor and the goodness of our hearts. get real! We put our money here because India is our psychological comfort blanket. Because we get the most returns here. Because in our innermost souls we know this is the ONLY place where we are first class citizens and not some second class immigrant.