I was not born when this photo was taken. It was taken by an American lady called Margaret Bourke-White, who was in India around the time of Independence and The Partition.
In a way, this photo does represent the mood of the ‘common folk” around the time of The Partition. Several hundred thousand, they say, were killed, brutalised and lost their homes. Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs were all guilty of atrocities, and the fabric of society that had been nurtured were ripped apart as Pakistan was curved out of India.
The boy sitting on the rocks seemed lost, desolate.
Since then, India has developed. Our score on The Human Development Index has improved. Yet, we are ranked 146 in the world, and in terms of how we treat our women, we are amongst the worst performing nations on earth.
The photograph above , taken in 1946/47 could easily have been shot today not only for the despair on the young man’s face, but also for the clothes he wears and the hutments in the background.
It is a lesson of leadership that is important to imbibe. When a leader moves, he/she should take the people along with him. No country, or organisation, can grow if just a small percentage of the population is benefited. It does not matter if the system of governance is Democratic, Autocratic, Royal, Communist.
If the people in the organisation / country do not experience the benefits of growth and an improvement in their quality of life, then the roots of that organisation / country start to rot.