Welcome to FDRI
United States is the oldest and most prosperous democracy in the world whereas
India is the world's most populous democracy. Opportunities are ample in US
whereas they are exceptional in India as it is coming off a low base. Yet, India
lags in growth compared to available opportunities; social justice is elusive;
corruption is rampant; accountability is absent; and faith in the system is
We at FDRI believe that a permanent fix comes from better governance. Good
governance in the United Sates allows us to seize opportunity and contribute
meaningfully to society, whereas poor governance in India leads to a wasting of
opportunity, human potential and public resources. India can grow much faster
and harmoniously with good governance.
We at FDRI do not believe that a simplistic replication of the American
experience is a viable solution to India's challenges. We assert that the
principles of democracy and good governance are universal, and that progress in
India is predicated on implementing those principles in ways that are consistent
with local circumstances, strengths, needs and sensitivities.
FDRI's approach is to promote more awareness activities in US and providing
intellectual support for the various governance reforms activities in India. In
US, we have embarked on a five-point program to constructively bring NRI
resources to contribute to this governance movement. They are articulated in the
accompanying FAQ. Further details can be found at www.fdri.org.
FDRI also plans to conduct, in collaboration with an academic institution of
repute, an annual series of high-profile strategic conclaves on furtherance of
governance and electoral reforms in India. The first of such Conferences would
be conducted on May 24 and 25, 2007 and would focus on governance and
empowerment. We appreciate the collaboration of the Center for South Asian
Studies at University of Berkeley in conducting this Conference.
We have no illusions of overnight success. This movement is a marathon -- not a
sprint. However, based on recent successes, we are more convinced now that
significant positive results can be achieved sooner than later. If our
collective efforts succeed, a resurgent, truly democratic India will empower its
citizens to realize their full potential. In the process, mother India gets
empowered as a nation, confidently leading in the global arena.