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Ranjeet01

It's Getting More Advanced You Know! - My Anecdotes Of My Visit To Punjab

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I've not been on the forum for a while but that's because I have been to Punjab.

I go every couple of years mainly because someone is getting married.

One of the things you always hear people say is "It's getting more advanced you know, it's more advanced than England".

That always made be chuckle. Yes there has been great changes made in Punjab. For the past twenty years odd years that I have been going, I have seen people switch from big flair trousers and punjabi suits to wearing jeans. Motorbikes to cars, squat latrines to sit down flush toilets. You cannot go around anywhere without yet another "palace" built.

Everyone has the latest phone, the latest trendy hair-do , designer clothes and with all the latest advertising boards promoting "Study in Australia" or whatever student visa that is available for any particular country in the Anglospere.

What has dawned on me that Punjab has advanced but it has advanced in consumerism and materialism.

I see better standard of cars with Audis, Mercs and BMWs driven, the weddings have got more extravagant.

But the infrastructure (as with most of India) is rubbish, the roads are rubbish (even though they have been recently built, there is no effort to maintain them). What is the point of buying flashy cars when the roads are not up to scratch.

I have seen palaces of weddings I have attended lose their lustre after a couple of years. It's amazing how something that has been built a couple of years ago look like it was built over 50 years ago with lack of maintenance.

Materially Punjab has never had it so good but the Punjabis/Sikhs still want to get out. What it is that they think they are going get in pardesi land that they can't get at home.

When people where moving out of Punjab to Canada during the 1980s, it was understandable. But the emigration out of Punjab has escalated exponentially since the millenium and it is not like the 1980s.

It seems that Punjab with all it's troubles in the 1980s was more of a content place, it is now not so much.

I married in Punjab and I have seen great changes in my wife's family. As a fourth generation Sikh with most of family abroad it was quite refreshing to see my in-laws (who never ventured out of the subcontinent ) who lived together with cousins/uncles in multiple generational households, very close-knit. But over the years, I am seeing the same kind of patterns emerging with less closeness, more individuality and they are now emigrating in their droves. It is quite sad to see.

It seems all the new emigration out of Punjab is pointing towards Australia.Sorry Canada, you are no longer the country of preference.

What is really funny when you converse with recently emigrated Punjabis is if their children speak Punjabi, it's the same old conversations you hear when you were kids thirty odd years ago. History seems to repeat itself time and time again.

These are just my opinions, you may agree or disagree if you wish.

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Guest Jacfsing2

It's more advanced than itself 30 years ago, not compared to the rest of the world. If you got someone from India and showed them the technology from other places around the world it would amaze them.

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I have a theory. It's not based on any scientific study, but just a few observations of my own.

Britain's been industrialised - on the whole - since the 19th century. That process actually began in the late 1700's. So, Britain has transformed from a largely agricultural (dependent on specialist regional economies) pre-industrial society to an industrial society that was a leader in manufacturing processes and general capitalistic practices. Of course, the rise of information technology in the past 30 years is also something that's been a constant in modern societies.

As I was saying, that process of industrialisation / mechanisation has occurred over decades and centuries. It's been gradual, it's been steady, and most of all, it's been a natural state of progression from one state of existence to another. It hasn't occurred in the blink of an eye, relatively speaking. As such, it's taken society - human beings - time to adjust and re-adjust and become accustomed to new ways of living and all the fringe benefits of living in a world that operates on the basis of mechanisation and technology. What I'm trying to say is that our conscious - as a collective and as individuals - has had time to soak up all the great changes and advancements made over the decades and centuries. It hasn't been like ripping a plaster off a cut, or pushing someone off a pier and expecting them to swim, and then expecting them to continue as if it's no huge change in circumstances.

Punjabi society in India has not had those decades and centuries to compose themselves; to re-calibirate their mental faculties; to become accustomed to those great leaps forward in technology and, importantly, modern societal norms. Yet, they've been exposed to our way of life - on many fronts, be they visiting NRI's, the media, etc - and they've found themselves craving that same existence. The problem is that they haven't been able to progress towards that stage of existence in an organic and steady way.

In essence, most (not all) Punjabi society existed, as recently as 25 or so years ago - in a manner that their medieval ancestors did in the middle ages. Aside from the odd radio or TV set or motorcar, vast swathes of people back home might as well have been existing in 1705 instead of 1995. How do you expect the human brain - particularly with a third-world mentality existing in a similar environment - to respond when the world suddenly reveals itself to be within reach? It would drive anyone absolutely insane.

And that's what's happened. They have been tempted by the fruits of Western existence whilst still dwelling in the East, yet they haven't earned it and their brains are still hardwired to behave and process life in the old agrarian, pre-industrial way, yet they're being bombarded with images and sounds of shiny and bright baubles from a decadent West, and basically it's done a number on them psychologically because they haven't progressed through the requisite stages of existence to arrive at a stage of being where what we take for granted is, for them, something that is almost alien. And I don't mean "earned" in terms of money or status or class or anything like that. The use of "earn" in this situation is in respect to advancements on a collective societal level, not in a haughty financial sense.

When simple people are given access to capabilities that are beyond their mental and psychological means, there will invariably be fallout. That's what we're seeing now with the obsession with materialism and consumer culture. They don't care how or where the money comes to wallow in the trinkets of Western life, they just want it more than anything else. That's why you get NRI's complaining about the lack of warmth and understanding from their families when they observe the changes back home. I'm not blaming Punjabi society at all. If anything, they're the true victims of these violent changes that just arent conducive to the kind of third-world societies and mentalities that are still ubiquitous over there.

Anyway, just my theories, nothing concrete.

You have articulated it better than I ever could.

It seems that Punjabi society has jumped from Stage 1 to Stage 4 without going through to Stage 2 and 3.

The UK have moved from Agricultural to Industrial to Service.

Without Industrial, you don't get the Infrastructural stuff such good electricity network, decent roads/transportation/communication links,proper sewage system etc. It's what is lacking currently amongst other things.

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You have articulated it better than I ever could.

It seems that Punjabi society has jumped from Stage 1 to Stage 4 without going through to Stage 2 and 3.

The UK have moved from Agricultural to Industrial to Service.

Without Industrial, you don't get the Infrastructural stuff such good electricity network, decent roads/transportation/communication links,proper sewage system etc. It's what is lacking currently amongst other things.

I like to think of it as the kind of subject that was discussed in Jurassic Park (the first one). The technology to create those dinosaurs wasn't unearthed by the scientists who were behind the park; they just took from the work of their forebears, built on it, and then slapped a label on the finished product and sold it. The knowledge wasn't acquired by them through discipline and rigour, therefore they had no respect for it, and accordingly were blind to the dangers ahead.

They knew they "could" but they didn't stop to think if they "should."

Then there's the throwing together of the human species with a long extinct species of animal, separated by millions of years of progression. You can't just skip that unthinkable period of time and hope everything will be fine when those two groups are thrown together

A similar principle - IMO - is at play in regards to this particular subject. Too much, too soon, and things will invariably turn sour. That's what we're observing back home now.

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One of the positives that I have noticed is that there is a segment of men who had cut their hair during the 1990's and early 2000's who have grown their kesh back.

I have also noticed that the consumption of alcohol is not as prevalent as it was before.

You would see some guys get completely off their face, but it seems less so (this is just my observation) this time.

It seems that some people have gone through a complete cycle.

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I've not been on the forum for a while but that's because I have been to Punjab.

I go every couple of years mainly because someone is getting married.

One of the things you always hear people say is "It's getting more advanced you know, it's more advanced than England".

That always made be chuckle. Yes there has been great changes made in Punjab. For the past twenty years odd years that I have been going, I have seen people switch from big flair trousers and punjabi suits to wearing jeans. Motorbikes to cars, squat latrines to sit down flush toilets. You cannot go around anywhere without yet another "palace" built.

Everyone has the latest phone, the latest trendy hair-do , designer clothes and with all the latest advertising boards promoting "Study in Australia" or whatever student visa that is available for any particular country in the Anglospere.

What has dawned on me that Punjab has advanced but it has advanced in consumerism and materialism.

I see better standard of cars with Audis, Mercs and BMWs driven, the weddings have got more extravagant.

But the infrastructure (as with most of India) is rubbish, the roads are rubbish (even though they have been recently built, there is no effort to maintain them). What is the point of buying flashy cars when the roads are not up to scratch.

I have seen palaces of weddings I have attended lose their lustre after a couple of years. It's amazing how something that has been built a couple of years ago look like it was built over 50 years ago with lack of maintenance.

Materially Punjab has never had it so good but the Punjabis/Sikhs still want to get out. What it is that they think they are going get in pardesi land that they can't get at home.

When people where moving out of Punjab to Canada during the 1980s, it was understandable. But the emigration out of Punjab has escalated exponentially since the millenium and it is not like the 1980s.

It seems that Punjab with all it's troubles in the 1980s was more of a content place, it is now not so much.

I married in Punjab and I have seen great changes in my wife's family. As a fourth generation Sikh with most of family abroad it was quite refreshing to see my in-laws (who never ventured out of the subcontinent ) who lived together with cousins/uncles in multiple generational households, very close-knit. But over the years, I am seeing the same kind of patterns emerging with less closeness, more individuality and they are now emigrating in their droves. It is quite sad to see.

It seems all the new emigration out of Punjab is pointing towards Australia.Sorry Canada, you are no longer the country of preference.

What is really funny when you converse with recently emigrated Punjabis is if their children speak Punjabi, it's the same old conversations you hear when you were kids thirty odd years ago. History seems to repeat itself time and time again.

These are just my opinions, you may agree or disagree if you wish.

You are right in everything you say, but I don't think it has advanced that much as it should have.

The roads you are spot on about, even customer facilities and services are non existent. Eg: stop points for rest are not very good. The washrooms are not advanced at all and you cannot get the same snacks as abroad, even though people say you can, I didn't find any same as here. Nothing is the same, clothes, shoes everything seems fake or of poor quality that's why it's cheaper, and people from abroad think they get a good deal, but only on very few items.

The only thing I found that has changed is one highway and one airport, oh and the fashion, the youngsters are up to date with the latest "cool" fashion, but that's about it.

Another thing I noticed is, our relatives waste so much water, no wonder there's a shortage in the world. They just leave the taps running, and don't get the dripping taps fixed. No respect for facilities and services there at all. Many take things for granted and then complain they run out.

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It seems that some people have gone through a complete cycle.

That's actually another pertinent point you've raised, Singh Ji.

They don't like being offered advice - no matter how tactfully and respectfully phrased - on situations or issues that will cause them problems or harm, coming from someone in a position of experience. Until they themselves experience the very same problems they were warned about, they just don't want to know. Of course, after what they were warned about has transpired, they sheepishly admit they were in the wrong.

It's like a child who's told, "don't touch that fire, you'll burn yourself" and the child thinks, "I'm being lied to. The fire won't hurt me, it looks so warm and inviting." When the child ends up burning its fingers, it cries, "You were right, I was burnt." He was told that would happen, but he thought was clever.

There's the saying, "A wise man learns from history, a foolish man learns from experience." There's too many back home who are all too ready to ignore history (those who have their best interests at heart and don't want them to succumb to previous pitfalls) and fall flat on their face despite repeated warnings. With that mindset, there is nothing, or very little, anyone can do but watch mistakes being made over and over again.

Edited by MisterrSingh
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Another thing I have noticed is that when more recently emigrated Sikhs go to Punjab for holidays they can be the most arrogant people you can meet and they will lord it over the people in Punjab.

They start feeling superior and act quite aloof.

It is quite interesting to observe the behavioural dynamics.

As a "prahna bar wala", you have nothing to prove and you treat everyone the same and mix and mingle with everyone. For a local Punjabi, it is quite refreshing for them as it can change their perception but on the flip side you got to keep a degree of reservation since you do not want to feel you are taken advantage.

You get asked the weirdest questions such as "how much do you earn", "how much does milk cost?" They skirt around asking indirect questions about emigrating. You ask them if they want go pardesi and they say no.

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You are right in everything you say, but I don't think it has advanced that much as it should have.

The roads you are spot on about, even customer facilities and services are non existent. Eg: stop points for rest are not very good. The washrooms are not advanced at all and you cannot get the same snacks as abroad, even though people say you can, I didn't find any same as here. Nothing is the same, clothes, shoes everything seems fake or of poor quality that's why it's cheaper, and people from abroad think they get a good deal, but only on very few items.

The only thing I found that has changed is one highway and one airport, oh and the fashion, the youngsters are up to date with the latest "cool" fashion, but that's about it.

Another thing I noticed is, our relatives waste so much water, no wonder there's a shortage in the world. They just leave the taps running, and don't get the dripping taps fixed. No respect for facilities and services there at all. Many take things for granted and then complain they run out.

Interesting you mentioned about the washrooms.

My father always mentioned how white people lack personal hygiene, but when you go to Punjab and indeed across India, it's worse.

I remember going into using a public washroom in Delhi (had to pay 10 rupees for the privilege ), I had to close my nose.

At least as male you can stand up and pee, it must be worse for women.

You appreciate having constipation.

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Another thing I have noticed is that when more recently emigrated Sikhs go to Punjab for holidays they can be the most arrogant people you can meet and they will lord it over the people in Punjab.

They start feeling superior and act quite aloof.

It is quite interesting to observe the behavioural dynamics.

As a "prahna bar wala", you have nothing to prove and you treat everyone the same and mix and mingle with everyone. For a local Punjabi, it is quite refreshing for them as it can change their perception but on the flip side you got to keep a degree of reservation since you do not want to feel you are taken advantage.

You get asked the weirdest questions such as "how much do you earn", "how much does milk cost?" They skirt around asking indirect questions about emigrating. You ask them if they want go pardesi and they say no.

Yep, I noticed the recently emigrated ones too being Ahankari, making out they been abroad for like 20yrs, when in fact it will be only 5-8yrs or even 2yrs. And the most stupid thing that happened was they tried it with me lol. I was like, "what u on about"! I just looked at them and thought, oh yeah really, carry on with the gappa.

Lol @ how much does milk cost. I got asked how I know to speak Punjabi, and are my parents both Punjabi, is your brother a Gora too lolz. When I asked is my Punjabi not good, I was told "nahi tusi theth Punjabi bolde kitho Sikhi". So how can I be a Gori ?

True about the weirdest questions, but they do it on purpose. One woman was talking to other women, kept going on about how single girls abroad don't get married to guys from India, it's only divorced ones. Then I had to get in and say, actually no, there's plenty that do, but your girls from India, the bad ones, go abroad and marry the guys, then divorce them, to bring their boyfriends over and the same with some guys, they leave the girls there and bring their girlfriends over after. So I told them direct, and to see themselves first, then belittle us abroad. That soon shut her up and the rest were like, "haa, sahi kendi a tu, Ida karna nai chaida, bakian le kam kharab karde".

One of the positives that I have noticed is that there is a segment of men who had cut their hair during the 1990's and early 2000's who have grown their kesh back.

I have also noticed that the consumption of alcohol is not as prevalent as it was before.

You would see some guys get completely off their face, but it seems less so (this is just my observation) this time.

It seems that some people have gone through a complete cycle.

Yes I noticed this too, the younger ones are wearing turbans and it's at the wedding I was at, none of the younger guys drank, but the elder ones did. I attended a wedding at the weekend here and all the young ones were drinking spirits, as well as beer. So there is a difference there. But I guess it depends which pind you belong to or which environment, because there are a lot doing drugs too. Edited by simran345
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Another thing I have noticed is that when more recently emigrated Sikhs go to Punjab for holidays they can be the most arrogant people you can meet and they will lord it over the people in Punjab.

They start feeling superior and act quite aloof.

It is quite interesting to observe the behavioural dynamics.

As a "prahna bar wala", you have nothing to prove and you treat everyone the same and mix and mingle with everyone. For a local Punjabi, it is quite refreshing for them as it can change their perception but on the flip side you got to keep a degree of reservation since you do not want to feel you are taken advantage.

You get asked the weirdest questions such as "how much do you earn", "how much does milk cost?" They skirt around asking indirect questions about emigrating. You ask them if they want go pardesi and they say no.

The worst part is when you see someone who just left Punjab 2 or 3 years ago finding it difficult to speak Punjabi when they go back to Punjab and show off their new Angreji accented Punjabi. The women do this the most. Edited by Jonny101
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That's actually another pertinent point you've raised, Singh Ji.

They don't like being offered advice - no matter how tactfully and respectfully phrased - on situations or issues that will cause them problems or harm, coming from someone in a position of experience. Until they themselves experience the very same problems they were warned about, they just don't want to know. Of course, after what they were warned about has transpired, they sheepishly admit they were in the wrong.

Hit the nail on the head. Try and put forward perfectly logical arguments and reasons why they should not travel abroad leaving behind kith and kin to fend for themselves and that their fellow brothers are living in squalid conditions under bridges still you have more chance of convincing them than having your feet washed by the Pope. They glare right through you, almost as if looking at a Ghostly spirit, then nod like they've been hypnotised at which point the subject changes to something completely different.

Ranjeet01, the washrooms at some Gurdwarey fare no better and the ones at Petrol Stations should be given a wide berth unless one feels the need to catch a nasty bug/bites as a parting gift. Panga is foreigners rarely suffer from Constipation in Punjab, I always take a healthy supply of Imodium in case the need arises, fortunately frequent visits since '99 have fended off the runs.

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One of the positives that I have noticed is that there is a segment of men who had cut their hair during the 1990's and early 2000's who have grown their kesh back.

I have also noticed that the consumption of alcohol is not as prevalent as it was before.

You would see some guys get completely off their face, but it seems less so (this is just my observation) this time.

It seems that some people have gone through a complete cycle.

This is happening the world over. Social Media though has a negative impact in certain cases, has been useful for Parchar and the message of Sikhi is reaching people Globally quicker than ever before, it is flourishing and on the rise, bring on Khalsa Raj :biggrin2:.

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Hit the nail on the head. Try and put forward perfectly logical arguments and reasons why they should not travel abroad leaving behind kith and kin to fend for themselves and that their fellow brothers are living in squalid conditions under bridges still you have more chance of convincing them than having your feet washed by the Pope. They glare right through you, almost as if looking at a Ghostly spirit, then nod like they've been hypnotised at which point the subject changes to something completely different.

They think you're trying to mess them about, i.e. stop them for gaining the opportunities that our elders had when they emigrated to the West. I don't doubt there's a few devious people over here who'd like to see their relatives wallow in a dead-end existence in Punjab, but most people express their misgivings out of concern. But it has no affect.

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