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Monday, September 22, 2014

Hagiography by the illogical Indian

I had great respect for a certain Indian website until it associated the concept of patriotism with denouncement of U.S. citizenship. The post informed us of a certain individual who had allegedly said that his Indian citizenship is more important than anything else (his junior scientist job offer at NASA). The site almost conferred sainthood upon him for a personal decision (if true) that can be driven by several factors. By all means, promote nationalism because we need to feel an extreme sense of superiority over other nations to feel proud of our country. Like a spoiled brat who needs to be constantly told how wonderful he is or else he throws a tantrum.

Firstly, you don't need to have a U.S. citizenship to work for NASA. More than 50% of employees at NASA are contractors who work on other visas, and that include non-U.S citizens like Europeans, Japanese, etc. You will need a citizenship only if you have to serve as a civil servant (which also comes with a lot of restrictions).

Furthermore, the site seemed to imply that anyone who leaves India to pursue science or other careers is unpatriotic. Strive to be a global citizen and don't be a victim of jingoism.  Personally, I know a lot of NASA employees of Indian origin collaborating with India. Those collaborations open new frontiers to students in virtual classrooms, researcher in labs, and even farmers in the fields.

Also, there is a common misconception that NASA is all about space. NASA has programs that monitor global warming, forest cover, etc. Google 'NASA earth science ' for examples.

Update: The post has been taken down following several protests, including one which rightly asked,  'why doesn't he work for ISRO if he is so patriotic?' Especially when it is on the verge of making space history with Magalyaan.

Seems like the whole thing was a big scam. Read here.

1 comment:

Saurav said...

Good read - as always