I recently came across this strange paradox. India is both poor & rich!

35 per cent of Indian population lives on less than $1 a day, which is comparable to Bangladesh’s 36 per cent and much worse than Pakistan’s 17 per cent.

The World Bank reported that India is 12th wealthiest nation in 2005 with its GDP touching 785.47 billion dollars or Rs 35,34,615 crore . US was the wealthiest nation with GDP of 12.46 trillion dollars. While India was way down compared to China, positioned fourth with 2.23 trillion dollars of GDP, it was wealthier than Mexico, Russia and Australia.

According to recent Forbe’s list of Wealthiest people in the world, there are 23  billionaires in India with combined net worth of $99bn, surpassing former Asian leader Japan’s 27 billionaires with their total worth of $67bn.

The outsourcing revolution has created unprecendented opportuntities and wealth for Indians. But we are also seeing unprecendented levels of social and moral crises in India?Is all this development and progress at the cost of India’s soul? Jesus once asked - “What good is it for man to gain the whole world and yet lose his own soul?” (Lk 9:25)

But should we measure wealth of a nation only in economic terms only? Are people in richer nations happy? Has riches solved people’s eternal quests?