UPA’s Cash transfer policy

(Dr. krishan Bir Chaudhary)

The mainstream media has hailed ‘CASH TRANSFER’ as a brilliant move by Dr. Man Mohan Singh and his economists. Is it a new type of Vote Gathering Machine? Stuff the poor with cash to win their votes.

Who gets the sops? What are the criteria?

How many landless and migrant labourers have identification papers or Adhar card? How many of the truly indigent have a bank account? What is the basis of allocation? How many BPL card holders own land? The banking system facilities are not available in the large number of villages.

The age old proven dictum of ‘train a man to catch fish instead of giving him a fish’ does not enter the desiccated heads of the planners in the government. Why is government adopting Non Productive Development Model when the nation needs Productive Growth Development Model both in industry and agriculture? Since past two decades irrigation facilities have not increased and the soil health is declining.

Water mismanagement is seriously hurting agricultural productivity and employment small and cottage industries in the agro-processing sectors. There is no proper planning by the planners in these most crucial sectors.

The present model of development of Airports, Highways and Real Estate is the need of MNC’s and 15% Indians only. What about the 85% Asli Bharat? The share market, import & real estate are the bases of present GDP growth, not real growth and unemployment and under-employment is increasing in the country.

The same policies were adopted by Sub Saharan African Countries and now they have became perpetually dependent on Food Aid from rich countries. That actually is the agenda of United Nations Framework Team for India and South Asia.

In India 85% farmers are small and marginal and they have less than two acres of land to grow food and yet they feed this nation of 1.2 billion souls. Majority do not have BPL card. How will these farmers and farm hands get the fertilizer subsidy? The government said that only BPL card holders are entitled to benefit from direct cash transfer.

Is the government covertly planning to eliminate fertilizers subsidy? Will it not increase the cost of agriculture production in the country? Will it not destroy the viability of small and marginal farmers’ economic basis? Is government planning to stop the Public Distribution System and in future stop the procurement of agriculture produce from farmers at minimum support price? Analysts say that this is precisely the agenda of the United Nations Framework Team which is covertly influencing India’s economic policy to eventually destroy its agricultural base.

This Government proposes to transfer 3.2 lakh crore to 10 crore households which comes to Rs 3,200 rupees per household per month. Various surveys across the country strongly indicate that if a household fails to earn Rs 8,000 per month it can’t insure three meals for the family, proper education, social obligations and medical care. Rupees eight thousand multiplied by twelve months in a Gregorian calendar adds up to rupees 96,000.

The Rs. 3200 per month or 38,400 per year of cash transfers to BPL households promised by the UPA-II government falls short of actual cash needs of a typical rural household while destroying a complex food production system. Since majority of BPL households are landless labourers, who will get the cash for votes?

The Sengupta, Saxena and Tendulkar committees, respectively, estimated 77%, 50% and 37% percent of our population as poor, respectively. That roughly works out to be 90, 60 and 45 crore Indians, respectively for each method of assessment, as one analyst says.

The Rs 3,200 transfer does not even match the so called economists’ estimate that Rupees 28 per day per capita consumption expenditure means that person is not poor. Rs. 28 per capita per day comes to Rs 10,220 per person per annum; for a family of five, Rs. 51,100 per annum. UPA-II is fooling the nation’s voters and this looks like a plan for slow death of the poor people of India.

The government wants to eliminate subsidies on PDS, fuel, fertilizer, and wage support programme like MGNREGA. A recent report says Rs. 500,000 crore was given to private corporations as subsidy. Has the UPA any scheme to reduce that subsidy? Actually the government has forgotten economics and is towing the line adopted by Western Governments to impoverish the 99% and enrich the 1%.


(Editorial : Kisan Ki Awaaz Magazine)