1. Why did you leave India?
For better opportunities and to see the world.
2. Do you plan to return to India to settle down?
Eventually. Bangalore or in some quiet place in God's own country.
3. What do you like most about being abroad?
Quality of life and work ethic. Taking pride in whatever work you do.
4. What do like least about being abroad?
Lack of culture - even amongst us.
Being away from all loved ones back home.
5. Would you be concerned about raising your family outside India?
Yes and No. Depends on how you raise your kids. Talk to them as friends and not as kids when they are old enough to understand.
6. What are your thoughts about marrying outside your immediate community, someone who speaks a different language or practices a different religion?
I am married and have a wonderful wife and two kids. We have had friends who are married into other cultures back at home, so what's the big deal when two people who like each other come from different cultures. I would say to anyone - Think of yourselves and not of/for others.
7. What would be the first thing you would do if you became the Prime Minister of India?
Root out corruption and give credit to others where it is due.
8. What do you think are India's greatest strengths?(max 3)
9. What do you think are the biggest problems facing India? (max 3)
Politics - Good politics will take care of all other problems (methinks).
10. Do you think that a presidential form of government would better serve the needs of India's democracy?
11. For whom do you have the highest regard amongst living Indians?
When I was in school, we were taught in Tamil - Maatha, Pitha, Guru and Dev. So I would assume your parents and the teachers who shaped us for our future.
12. Do you think that the national obsession with Cricket has helped or has it hurt India as a sporting nation?
Yes. Give credit to other games too !!
13. What do you think are India's greatest achievements since Independence? (max 3)?
14. What is your favourite pastime?
Browsing the web, playing with my sons and relaxing with some good old songs - Hindi/Tamil/Malayalam/Carnatic and once in a while a peg of 18yr old scotch.
15. What is your happiest memory?
All childhood memories.
16. What's your most memorable journey?
I like travelling and I consider all travels memorable though some of them I would like to erase from my mind. The recent trip we took to the Smokies in Tennessee with our friends was an enjoyable one.
17. What is your ultimate food dish?
Fish curry (2 days old) and Kappa (tapioca).
- Kerala Sadhya .
and a whole lot more ....
18.What are your favourite movies? (max 3)
Cannot name them.
19.What are your favourite books (please list authors as well)? (max 3)
Western novels, Comics (Tintin, Asterix,...), books by John Grisham, Nelson DeMille, Frederick Forsyth, Leon Uris, Anne Ryan, Arthur Hailey, Desmond Bagley, Henry Denker and the list goes on and on....
and ofcourse our great Indian epics - Ramayana/Mahabarath/Bhagavath Gita/Works of Tagore.
20.A message from you to other NRIs
Do not lose your identity.
Meet Sathish Mukundan. He currently lives in St. Louis, Missouri, USA.
Published - November, 2002
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The views of this column are the author's own, and do not necessarily represent the views of NRI Online.