Though India offers different and almost contrasting climate, terrain, food items, services, and the living conditions across various metro cities, there are certain issues that plague the Indian millennials in a similar fashion in almost all of them. Living in metro cities was a dream for the Gen Y, but like any other problem which originates specifically because of the population of the country, the crowded roads and lanes of any big city in India do not throw an inviting picture. Many of the young professionals feel stuck and choiceless when it comes to finding an alternative to a life which they have come to dislike.
Admittedly, there are many modern facilities and infrastructural wonders that attract the first-timer to a metro city in India, but the charm fizzles out almost within a week or maximum a month. If it is a couple or a new family with children, stress and depression are almost prevalent in every house. Within a few years, they desperately start thinking about moving to a foreign country; finding ways to get a job closer to their hometown through alternative career choices; or even start a small business so they could just go and settle where they really feel happy. The lack of similar opportunities in other cities and the concentration of jobs in metro cities are making things tougher.
Getting stuck in rains because there are no proper drainage systems; unavailability of local delicacies that they enjoy in their hometowns and cities; hardships they face in getting back to their families during festivals and other special occasions; almost forgetting how warm it felt to sit in the sunshine during winters, and feeling restless during over-charged and noisy nights–these millennials have so much to tackle with. Yet, there are five major issues that remain unresolved and make a lot of them question their decision to pursue professional courses and seek jobs in these big cities.
Let’s bring out these major issues that almost every Indian millennial faces:
- Air Pollution
I was getting a medical check-up before joining a big media house in Delhi/NCR when I got to know that the size of my lungs has increased. I did not report any problem and never had any issues in the past too. The doctor calmly asked me about my background. I replied that I was from the state of Punjab. He asked how long I was staying in the National Capital Area. I mentioned that it would have been more than a year. He smiled and said that then it was okay to have enlarged lungs because the air was so polluted; a bit large size of the lungs was considered the standard size for a person living in Delhi/NCR. I was very surprised. Later, as I lived there for another 3-4 years, I became aware that air pollution is really a thing, and it is not healthy to live in Delhi/NCR.
Air pollution is something you can’t avoid if you are living in any metro city in India. There is no comprehensive solution in sight and everybody is just waiting to get affected.
For a distance of 6 Km, I used to spend more than half an hour driving to and from my office. To avoid further delay, I used to drive a mobike. My female colleagues used to spend more than 1.5 hours driving in a car for a distance of around 12 Km.
Just imagine the traffic that jams the roads of these so-called big cities. A famous phrase is said ‘in passing’ in such cities: we do the bumper-to-bumper driving! While they rue the traffic jam, they submit to the idea of a traffic jam as their lot. The main reason behind all this is unplanned urbanization and individual vehicles used by everyone. Pooling a car or any other vehicle is still not a popular idea.
Further, these traffic jams give birth to accidents and altercations because of the trespassing of road rules and regulations.
- House Rent
A major chunk of their salary goes to the house rent. Finding a good and suitable house in these big cities is a known issue. Either you adjust to a smaller one to save money or spend a huge amount of money to get the conveniences that you require. Often, second-floor or sometimes even third-floor apartments are available which makes it a hell to commute.
Right from the safety of the area, availability of a nearby market, facilities like parking, late-night entry, the location of schools, hospitals, and even a barbershop would matter. Needless to say, it is hard to find a good house in a good locality at a reasonable price.
My friend lived with three other roommates on the second floor of a house. All of them had their separate cars. The first floor was also occupied by working professionals and they also had 3-4 cars. The owner of the house, living on the ground floor, had a car and a bike. Just imagine this scenario in almost every house and then think hard about how you could find a parking space in the colony.
The problem of parking space is complementary to traffic jams. Because of the over-crowded roads, there is literally no space to park your vehicle somewhere in the market or on the side of a road. Even in colonies and societies, you can’t park more than one car.
In malls, at metro stations, and even in the hospitals, even after paying 50-60 INR for a period of 3-4 hours, you will struggle to find a space to park.
- Family Time
Well, this is an intangible issue but is unavoidable because what we are if we don’t have connections with other human beings; what’s the value of our lifestyle if we can’t find some time to spend with our family members! Unfortunately, this is what troubles almost every millennial living in the metro cities.
Friends don’t get the time to catch up, spouses hardly share a moment of joy, children sometimes don’t even know when their parents come and go. Life is a fast-turning wheel and everybody feels stuck with it.
What’s the Remedy
It’s not easy to do away with all these problems yet there are certain things that millennials can choose to do:
- Start pooling cars and commute together
- With the arrival of the on-call taxi and mobile-taxi services, they can even think of not buying cars
- Dedicate 15-minutes to half an hour for a family meet-up and switch-off their mobile phones to make sure they are in touch with every member of their family. A similar meet-up could be planned for friends per week or per month
- To counter the impact of pollution, try using some air-purifiers and also engage in some breathing yoga techniques
- Instead of spending money in malls and watching movies, save them for tri-monthly or six-monthly travel to better places to compensate for the pollution and over-charge. You can even think about attending some retreats or workshops etc.
If you would like to share any suggestions, please do write to us through the comment section!