Why loan waiver is a Bad Idea for India?

There is no doubt that despite achieving high growth rate since post liberalization phase, agriculture sector remained lack luster. The growth rate in agricultural sector not only saw a variable pattern, but during some years it displayed a negative growth. Our coutry is still heavily dependent on agriculture. Nearly 58% of the population is directly or indirectly dependent on it, yet the contribution of agri-sector is just around 15% of the GDP. This means more than 58% of the population generates 15% revenue year on year.

Credit: GettyImage

This is not good for economy.

Since their income is less, hence they are from the most vulnerable section of society. If 58% of the population will be vulnerable than nation will itself be vulnerable. Every year we listen the news of farmers’ suicide. When a person doesn’t find any ray of hope for survival, he takes such an extreme steps.

Reasons of farms distress in India.

Too many people involved in this activity which is less remunerative than service and manufacturing sector.

Dependence on monsoon which is simply unpredictable even for scientists.

Low productivity per hectare compared to other big agricultural producer countries. For example USA produces double quantity of Paddy from the same field size. We have 2.4% of the total land area of the world but more than 17% of the population.

Low level of technological awareness in agricultural field.

Poor irrigation system.

Poor and informal credit system. Since farming is a risky business in India and Farmers are predominantly poor in our nation, so they need credit before each sowing season for seeds, fertilizers and pesticides. But many of them are unbanked and away beyond the reach of formal credit system. Hence they take loan from Moneylenders at exorbitant rates and even in slightest of variations in their expenditure pattern such as any marriage ceremony, illness etc. they are web trapped.

The list goes on and on. Even though the problem persists for many decades, the government did not perform well in addressing their issues permanently. Only band aid solution was provided and that too at the time of election.

Waving of farmers’ loan is one such example. Farm loan waiver means government pays the loan taken by the farmer back to the Banks in case if the farmer is unable to repay it.

No doubt majority of  Indian farmers are cash strapped but waving of farmers loan only for the sake of winning the election is not good for the nation’s economy.

Some of the reasons could be:

It destroys the formal credit system of the nation.

Every time government wave off the loans, the burden falls on the government. Indian economy has always seen a high Debt to GDP ratio. This additional burden worsens the condition.

Fixed Capital Formation gets severely impacted because of the loan waivers. For example in Uttar Pradesh nearly Rs. 36,000 crore was waived off. This could have been utilized in building infrastructure such as rail, road educational institutions, hospitals etc.

It impacts farmers’ behavior and in anticipation of loan waiver before elections, they become willful defaulters and they shy away from paying it

India is already struggling with Non Performing Assets. These unpaid loans also have a role to play in it.

Loan waiver can’t help the all the famers as India still lacks financial inclusion in credit system. Many of the farmer takes loan from money lenders and loan waiver is only helpful for those who have taken loan from formal credit agencies.

So instead of giving loan waiver government should make effort for the permanent solution to the permanent problem. Some of the measures in right direction could be increase in investment in farm technology, increasing the formal credit system among farmers, interest subvention, increase in irrigation facility, better remunerative price and procurement policies.  

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Contesting Election and EDUCATION

India boasts itself as one of the largest democracies of the world. We have achieved remarkable feet by remaining a democratic country even after more than 70 years post independence. The country which was separated from us never saw a prime minister for full term. Dictatorship remained a constant feature of our eastern neighbor.

We cherish our democracy. One of our main features of our democracy is that we remained a vibrant republic. There are various experiments done in our system of governance. Some are, giving universal adult franchise to every citizen above certain age, treating women equal to men since inception, at least, in political realm, three tier system of governance etc. These innovations have helped us to become mature in our form of governance.

Few years back Rajasthan government also made some innovation. It barred people from contesting election in Urban and Local Bodies Bodiesn  (ULB i.e. Gram Panchayat and Municipality) who didn’t had certain educational qualification. One more reason for their denial to contest elections was unavailability of toilets in their homes. This simply means that only those people who posses certain minimum educational qualification (10th or 12th in some cases) can contest an election and can become representative of the common mass.

At first it sounds awesome. Rationale behind electing an educated person can be many. Some of them would be:

**There is direct relationship between education and development. More educated person can introduce more reform and in turn, more development
**Educated leaders can handle the complex bureaucratic system much better.
** He would be aware of various initiatives which is benefitting people around the world and he can use it for development of its subject
**Running an institution involves following many rules, regulations and procedures. Educated people can perform this initiative much better
**India is still struggling with many prejudices, such as caste, creed, gender etc. Educated representative can bring reform in the society.
**Those who are educated at the helm would know the importance of education better and hence can make necessary condition for education of the society.

Benefits of educated person in leadership position can be long and unending. So it seems right to prevent the uneducated from ruling the society.

But recently a new Party has occupied the majority (with outside support from Independents and some small players) in Rajasthan assembly. They have issued Notification and scraped the law of this educational criteria. Now even an illiterate can Run and win election.

For many of the common citizens, this decision is baffling. Yet, those who scraped the previous law has some healthy arguments in favour for doing away with the previous law which disenfranchised uneducated members for contesting election. They gave the rationality that why uneducated people should not be debarred from contesting election

It’s against the spirit of democracy. Our constitution guarantees political equality. But, if we set criteria for contesting election based on educational qualification, then this will be a type of Discrimination.

It also takes away the right of people to elect representative according to their own will.

To run a government political and administrative acumen is more needed than educational qualification.

In many parts of rural areas more than 50% of the people are uneducated or not meeting the criteria set by the law. So they will be left out of the process.

It is discriminating against the marginalized section of society especially against women and backward section of society because the lack of education is much  prevalent among them.

The purpose of Panchayti Raj Institution (PRIs) was to involve the general public directly in administrative process, because they know the ground reality more than other forms of government, hence they can reach to solution more effectively. But this disenfranchisement will defeat the purpose.

Last, but very significant argument was that if the people remained uneducated for more than 70 years even after the independence, it is not the failure of people, it’s the failure of the state. Hence why people should be punished for the failure of the state.

So, I presented the both aspects of the disenfranchising uneducated people from contesting election. At times, it seems both arguments hold their fort according to Perspective from which we see. But it is equally true that at one time only one set of law can be applied on any state or region.
I would like to know your opinion on this subject matter. What do you feel about “Should uneducated person be our leader”?
Shoot your valuable comments below and give your perspective in this regard.

 

Farmer’s Day

Today is farmer’s day. On twitter #FarmersDay and #ThankYouFarmers were trending. I don’t know how many of them were accepting their thanks on Twitter. According to 2011 census, 68.3 % of the Indian population was living in village.  Majority of them is directly or indirectly involved in agriculture. Though they are approx 70% of the population, they are not considered as a vote bank as some of the communities. I don’t know why? So, when they are not vote bank, their economic stature in India is abysmally low and they are only remembered by the politicians only during the time of elections.

I love being close to nature. Today was Sunday, so I had the opportunity to escape from the city. I picked my bike and went for a long ride. I finally reached to a profession which is closest to nature “agriculture.” Spent some time with a farmer or two. Life of them were not financially sound, yet they had most precious asset with them. “Hope and contentment”

Sharing the images clicked in today’s trip

Ye Public Hai, Sab Janti hai?

Since past few months we were hearing high-pitched allegations that “Pradhanmantri Chor hai”. Whole election campaign for recently held elections were primarily made against BJP on this ground. Among other factors, these allegations resulted in the loss of BJP in three Hindi Heartlands.

Now Honorable Supreme Court came up a verdict that there were no case of corruption in this deal and there is no substantial evidence of favoritism, Which Rahul Gandhi and his congress party were labeling against the government.

I think this is a prime example of a popular cliché “Justice Delayed is Justice Denied.” Now Congress government will rule for five years in these states. What about people those who believed in those allegations and voted for Congress (or against BJP)? What about those leaders who made false allegations and tarnished the image of Prime Minister and his party? Should they be go unpunished? If it would be the case, then labeling false allegations will rampant, as we already have since the arrival a political party in Delhi. You know what I mean? Don’t You?

I have heard a song, and probably you all would have listened it “Ye public hai sab janti hai” (This is Public, that knows everything). I vehemently disagree with this.

Ye Public hai aur ye kuch bhi nahi Janti hai, sirf murkh banti hai aur banayi jatti hai.

Pass it on..

A good leader is one, who doesn’t always leads from the front, but when the time demands he is ready to operate from the back as well. Those leaders, who are insecure about their position never wants to relinquish his frontal space, as they always have a doubt in back of their mind that if they will give up the position now, then they will never be able to regain it in future. Robert Mugabe, present president of Zimbabwe could fall in this category. He was the one of the chief architect of the independence of Zimbabwe from British Rule. Yet, when England freed Zimbabwe in 1980 to till now, he is holding the office, just as a dictator. I can give the example of “power grip” from Indian domestic politics also, but that would have made this post political. Anyway you all know it, Won’t you?

One more special quality of the bet of the leaders is that they never take credit to the achievements rather they pass it on to those who worked under their guidance. Now I would like to give a very fresh and recent example of this.

India has just secured a spectacular diplomatic achievement by sending its one of the Jurist, Dalveer Bhandari to International Court of Justice (ICJ). The International Court is the prime judicial branch of the United Nations (UN) which settles the legal disputes between the various states. Such as the case of Kulbhushan Jadhav. The victory is sweet because India wrestled the seat from one of the P5 member i.e. Britain, who once colonized it for more than 150 years or so.

Social Media was on buzz. Everyone congratulated each other. But what made me feel good is the response of three personality which were directly or indirectly involved in the process. One is Prime Minister, other was the External Affairs Minister and the last  but most important was the Permanent Representative of India at United Nations.

When the result became evident Prime Minister gave credit to the External Affairs Minister and each and every staff to MEA.

Then what did External Affairs minister do, she pass the credit to Syed Akbaruddin by  mentioning special reference of him

And lastly the permanent representative shared a tweet along with his team who tirelessly worked to achieve this feet.

This is how team should be lead where each and every one should feel that they are part of the story.

What Say…?

The Cost of Sunday

Today, it’s neither 15th of August nor 26th of January. Yesterday, India also hasn’t registered any spectacular victory in a Cricket match over its arch rival, western neighbor. More than one year has been passed, when Indian Armed Force conducted a Surgical Strike in terrorists’ safe heaven. Can I discuss something patriotic today?

Good Morning friends, I have asked above question based on my two experiences. One, my experience suggests me that Patriotic zeal in our nation remains/remained full on display on the specific occasions which I have mentioned and on other days it remain lukewarm, if not absent. Two, in recent time whenever someone raises the topic of patriotism there is a tendency in public discourse to label him as Hyper-Nationalist/Ultra-Nationalist. Be it, advocating the position of standing for 52 seconds when national Anthem is played or singing Vande Matram, a song which inspired the generations of freedom fighter. I just don’t want to be dragged in that controversy hence I have asked a simple question, can I discuss something patriotic today?

Since it’s one way traffic, I can’t take the permission from all of you as long as my article will not be published. Hence, I drew the inspiration to publish my view, from article 19(a) from the Indian Constitution but at the same time when it will be in public domain you can let me know your views.

Okay enough of the background now coming directly to the topic.

Do you know Madan Lal Dhingra? Many of you would surely know him, at least the name, isn’t it? I enquired from you just because the name is not so familiar in the echelon of conspicuous Freedom Fighters. This fact is can easily be gauged as we have seldom heard “Madan Lal Dhingra amar rahe”, even on the special occasions which I have discussed earlier.

Embed from Getty Images

Recently, I was reading a book and came across a touching quote from him and from there I drew the inspiration to share it to my WordPress Friends.

Let me very briefly introduce Him, before introducing his quote.

  • Madan Lal Dhingra (8 February 1883 – 17 August 1909) was a revolutionary activist.
  • He assassinated a British Official named Sir William Hutt Curzon Wyllie, in England where he went on to study Mechanical Engineering in University College, London.
  • This was the first revolutionary act of 20th centaury and that too in the home of the colonizer.
  • His father, who was a civil surgeon and Chief Medical Officer of Amritsar at that time, had disowned him for his revolutionary activity and he was so furious of his son’s decision that he went on to advertise this decision in local newspaper.
  • For his act of assassination the British Official, he was sentenced to death by British Court, and on 17th of August 1909 he was hanged.

Now the quote of him which prompted me to write this piece:

“….Neither rich nor able, a poor son like myself can offer nothing but his blood on the altar of mother’s deliverance…may I be reborn of the same mother and may I re-die in the same sacred cause, till my mission is done and she stand free for the good of humanity and to the glory of the God….”

Have a great Sunday Friends, the best day of the week. A day when we can enjoy our FREEDOM most without bothering the price of it, as for the price, it has already been paid by someone else.

 

P.S. – If you have time, It’s my humble request to read Wikipedia page on Madan Lal Dhingra, especially the section where he presented his view point in the Court during his trial, I found it very inspirational. You find appealing, don’t restrict it to yourself, rather share it to others as some story of history needs to be propagated by the citizens as the government in power may have vested interests in writing History.