This website is about my efforts to relocate to India, a country where I was born, lived for four years, and travelled back and forth numerous times over the years. Over the next year or two, I'll be posting articles about my efforts to understand the country and come to grips with living here. It'll include articles about:
- the practicalities, frustrations and joys of moving of India like getting a bank account, travelling by public transport
- learning the history and geography through the eyes of someone with only a passing knowledge
- understanding the economic and environmental challenges facing India as it seeks to double its national income and wean itself off fossil fuels over the next decade.
Why OCIdental Environmentalist?
The Environmentalist bit is self-explanatory. I've been a policy wonk all my life, and India is a great place to do it from. The country is going through a profound transformation, probably already the most populous country in the world, the fifth largest economy and the fastest growing member of the G20 (of which it is currently President). The government set out an ambitious programme in its 2019 manifesto with goals to double its GDP to USD 5 trillion by 2025, install and provide transmission infrastructure for 500 GW of renewable energy by 2030 (comprising half its installed capacity), and provide inclusive development. Where better to try and make a difference?
The OCI means an overseas citizen of India, which is a weird almost-dual nationality that India permits people to hold if they, their parents or grandparents were Indians. We are allowed to work, buy stuff, go in and out of India freely, and get Indian prices for planes, trains and tourist attractions. But we can't vote or own agricultural land!