Friday, March 5, 2010

Bihar Can Never Change - Oh Yeah!!??

Recently I came across a very nice article about Bihar in Times of India ( that spoke about imposing penalty on a teacher who used the phrase "Bihar Can Never Change" in one of the KV (Kendriya Vidyalaya) exams.This article provoked me to do some soul searching about the facts about Bihar, means abode (monasteries).

It is really amazing to know that Bihar was one of the states that led to the development of India at world stage.Though my research was completely secondary, I could still manage to get some interesting bullet points to talk about. I am sure that many of us would not know that the invention of Indian Rupee and Custom Duties started in Bihar. It was started by Sher Shah (1540 - 1546) during his regime and it is still part of our Republic. He even built longest road of the Indian Subcontinent "Grand Trunk Road", which is still in existence and helps India in sustaining transport infrastructure.

To deal more with Bihar, one should know the facts about it - it has the 3rd largest population and majorly around 60% of popoulation is below the age of 25, which is good for the service industry growth. It is surrounded by Nepal, UP, West Bengal and Jharkhand from four sides and sacred river Ganga divides it into two parts. Bihar used to a center of power with dynasties equivalent to Roman Empires - Guptas and Mauryas. Whole of the South Asia was under a central rule of Magadh Empire (which was under Maurya and Gupta dynasties). Interesting huh!!!???

As far as Religion is concerned, Magadh Empire gave rise to two - Jainism and Buddhism, which is even now followed by large chunk of population in South Asia. Ganga in Bihar was a portion of stretch where people from around the world came for their mental peace. Talking more about the religion, Sikh Guru Gobind Singh was born in Patna - the last Guru in Sikhism.

Now the most interesting fact - Nalanda and Takshila were the world's first global universities, where people from every geography came and learnt subjects like Science, Ayurveda, Geography, Arts, Maths and Advance Sciences along with 60 other subjects. It was like a huge Infosys Campus at Mysore, where more than 10,500 people studied at a time. Things which were heard after a long time from USA and other developed counties were already running in Nalanda and Takshila in Bihar.

Bihar has given us brave and political people like Khudiram Bose, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Jayaprakash Narayan, and many more who led to its development. With the advent of new government, we can see changes coming in from various fronts - from Industrial to Educational. There has been talks to make an International Airport in Bihar near Bihta. Resurrection of Nalanda would be another topic we would be looking at, but I would assume that it could take time. IIT Bihta is coming soon at areas which was segregated for Heavy Vehical Factory once, which was not materialized due to political constraints earlier. This HVF was later moved to Avadi, Chennai by Jagjeevan Ram.

Lately, when I was attending my brother's marriage party, I happened to meet the VP Global of a world's renowned bank and another Financial project consultant person. We spoke at length about the development in Bihar and the only thing I found was common among all of us was that we were very positive about its growth in coming years. Real Estate, Education, Industries, Tourism, Financial Consultancies, etc were some of the hot areas which we were looking into. Call centers were also one area which would come in abundance once the education level reaches a threshold level, so a new level of training could transform these people altogether.

I have seen people from Bihar growing leaps and bounds once they come out of the shackles of mentality that prevailed for long since 1989. Mojor portion of Collectors, IAS officers, IPS officers, IITians come from Bihar. Energy and zeal to work hard is what they have to offer. They are the preferred workers at most of the places - even in Punjab. They have a very good adaptability to cast themselves into any part of land - be it Mumbai ;).

As far as food items are concerned, names like Litti Chokha, Motichoor ke laddoo, Kala Jamun, Kesaria Peda, Khaja, Khurma, Lai, Laktho, Thekua, Murrabba, Tilkut, Malpua & Pua, Chiwda, Sattu and many more are already in cuisine parlance everywhere... One could open a restaurant with most Bihari touch in any part of India and he would succeed - But not in Mumbai ;) (pun intended).

For long caste systems have constrained Bihar and its growth but with the new systems from Mr Nitish Kumar coming along, Bihar can regain its level once again. To add to the points about growth, its GDP has grown better than any other state in the past couple of years, and this has pushed it as one of the fastest growing major state in India for now.

So should we think before commenting on any of the state's competency about growth? Oh yeah!! I would rather say no state has seen a Point Blank Change as Bihar has seen in past couple of Centuries. I am positive about its change.

Are you??


  1. Its quite informatory about Bihar but Takshila was near Islamabad(Present day Pakistan Capital), not in Bihar.

  2. Yeah Jay! you are right... :) Its a knowledge for me too.. actually it was under Magadh and Mauryan dynasty when it took real shape with Kautilya (Chanakya). That time areas from Bangal to Afghanistan were under the Mauryan dynasty. May be there I misunderstood that it was under Bihar geography. There is lot of interesting history behind Takshila and Nalanda. I loved reading all about it today just because of your comment :) Thanks jay Bhaai!!