Updated: Mar 16
When I look at a 10-rupee bill, all I notice is the smiling face of Gandhi. I check a 20 – he is still smiling. What about a 50? Still smiling right back at me. I look up at statues and see his face again. He made such an impact on the world around him that even decades after his death, almost everyone in India has a bill with his face in their pockets.
An example of Gandhi’s influence is a huge statue of meditating Gandhi outside Vikasa Soudha, a government building. Our purpose at this massive government building was to conduct an interview with a government official. We went up 2 flights of stairs and into room 232. We start our interview to discuss flyovers and work of the India Rising Trust. After 30 minutes we asked our last question, “What is a grand challenge you are facing in your position?” He responded, “Well, after all these years I can still survive the governmental system and smile.”
The word smile brings me back to the 10-rupee bill. The people who fight these grand challenges must find reasons to smile or else these challenges will overwhelm them. Grand challenges are not something new – they are something people fight and work for every day. Solutions to grand challenges are sometimes new, but they don’t have to be. What I have learned the past 8 weeks is sometimes you must focus and look into the past in order to affect future solutions.
While we are here the next 2 and half weeks, I hope to make an impact, even though I am not a government official, or a famous figure like Gandhi – I have powerful team and the ability to voice my ideas.
To end my blog post with an inspiring quote:
“In a gentle way, you can shake the world” – Mahatma Gandhi