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Jaipur - The Pink City

 

Text of a keynote address given at an Aide et Action Workshop, Jaipur, November 3rd 2009. 

 I am honoured to be with you here at this workshop in Jaipur, nearly forty years after I was first in this beautiful pink city. I was a schoolboy then, traveling around India on a shoestring budget, and my mind went back to the attitudes and approaches that seemed so natural then, seeing poverty and deprivation and also enjoying the marvelous hospitality of so many from all walks of life.

 

 I was full of egalitarian ideals then, and I remember being told by those older and wiser than I was that it would be unnatural not to be some sort of a Marxist in one’s youth, just as it would be quite unnatural to continue a Marxist twenty years later, when one had grown up. In actual fact, when the world had grown older, twenty years later, it seemed that Marxism had been proved conclusively wrong, and the thrust for equality was entirely wrong-headed, and could lead only to increasing deprivation for all. 

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Rajiva Wijesinha

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